With the start of the new Super Rugby competition only weeks away, rugby is headed far a massive year. The new format and Australia’s extra team has had its critics and admirers.

Patstick, The Roar

Many eager Roarers have even debated the merits of expanding the Super Rugby conferences further from five to six clubs and more. Some believe that there is not enough quality Australian rugby players to go around, some say the overseas based players will come back given the chance, others maintain that our quality club players can make the step up.

I am a firm believer in the continual expansion of Super Rugby, with more teams in each conference. And I believe the best solution for Australia’s shortfall in quality players also solves another problem in the southern hemisphere – the Pacific Islands.

Australia needs quality and exciting rugby players, while the Pacific Islands need a professional competition. Perhaps a quota system should be in place; three players from each of the three Pacific Islands teams to be included in the squad, not the run on team.

The effect of this is as follows:

1. More Australian rugby teams, which will lead to a national competition.
2. Australian teams are competitive and attractive to watch.
3. More Pacific Island players are playing professional rugby, which means a stronger Samoa, Tonga and Fiji national teams.

All win in my book.

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  1. All a bit non plus in my book… I do not want to see another side from any SANZAR team now… it’s saturate so let’s make the most of it with a more refined version of this years format…

    Rugby is a pro game… and like in the NH there should be fokal problem with buying international players in… let’s face it… if infinite queue list of Brits, Japies, South Americans etc etc trying to get into Aus is anything to go by… why wouldn’t many international players both capped and not want to play Super rugby here if they could…

    Australia are the second ranked side in the world… their club rugby is as strong as ever and they now have a 5th team that is a very good mix of young and experienced, Aussie and international…

    Australian rugby has never looked stronger…

  2. One thing that has become evident with this Melbourne side for me this season albeit in practice games… they have more ‘quality’ depth for a long super season in many positions than all the Japie sides have… starting at 10 for example…

  3. Reply to bryce_in_oz @ 2:20 am:

    We’ll see once the comp kicks off though… But agreed

    The haemorrage of good quality players northwards is now starting to have a telling effect on our rugby… but that is out and out SARU’s fault….

    It has, since the days of Van Ruin, failed to provide the small unions with anything like a competitive cash structure to assist in player development on a professional level and our rugby has effectively deteriorated into five more or less decent teams and a bunch of bonus point victories.

    And the B section teams cannot hold onto any professionals and I doubt Piet Poephol has ever even see a B section game…

    Then we had Oregan Hoskins the Big Unions man elected as representative voice of command for the Big Unions who has duly ignored the small unions and then only started development of ONE small rugby region after close on 6 years in power and then only halfheartedly because the ANC’s Xhosa Nostra wants the cash (doesn’t it always) and has concentrated all development funds on their region.

    I’m sorry

    Given the strength we were able to concentrate in something like 30 provinces in the days of my youth, the so-called concentration of rugby power has lead to a dilution of our talent to other climes…

    SARU MUST carry the can for the death of small union rugby…

  4. Reply to Timeo Danaos et dona ferentes @ 3:50 pm:

    Nie regtig nie

    Dis eintlik jy wat weier om te sien as ‘n man reg is.

    Gerhard Manz
    Ray Mordt
    Des Van Jaarsveldt
    Johan Claasen
    Dick Lockyear
    John Gainsford
    Basil Kenyon
    Jan Ellis
    Dawie De Villiers
    Piet Visagie
    Hannes Marais
    Mannetjies Roux
    Joggie Viljoen

    Myns insien wyd die name juis dat Boer reg is en jy…

  5. No lack of depth here…


    1 Rodney Blake
    2 Heath Tessman (Frieir my first choice when fit)
    3 Greg Somerville
    4 Kevin O’Neil
    5 Al Campbell
    6 Jarrod Saffy
    7 Tom Chamberlain
    8 Gareth Delve
    9 Nick Phipps
    10 James Hilgendorf
    11 Lachlan Mitchell
    12 Cooper Vuna
    13 Stirling Mortlock
    14 Afusipa Taumoepeau
    15 Danny Cipriani

    16 Laurie Weeks
    17 Ged Robinson
    18 Hugh Pyle
    19 Michael Lipman
    20 Richard Kingi
    21 JP Joubert
    22 Mark Gerrard

    Bench alternates for Saders trial
    23 Nic Henderson
    24 Haoni McDonald
    25 Tim Davidson
    26 Sam Cordingley
    27 Peter Betham
    28 Luke Rooney (Huxley)

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