5 April 2007

Moving the Brumbies

| johnboy
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It seems the Brumbies aren’t successful enough.

The Daily Terror is somewhat bizarrely featuring a second story about a Canberra team in the one day, this time quoting “senior” officials who think the very future of rugby in Australia is reliant on shifting the Brumbies just that little bit further south to Melbourne.

This despite the ACT already being the most successful Australian rugby province in the last decade and streets ahead of NSW and Queensland this year.

Apparently a couple of big corporate backers are much more important than 15,000 fans.

The mechanics of moving the Brumbies are still tricky though, the local stakeholder clubs would need to vote for it, something the big swinging dicks constantly ignore in their grand strategising.

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The success of the Brumbies can be linked strongly to two thinkgs – the support of the rugby going public in the region and initially the underdog status – being formed predomniantly of “leftovers”. I’m sure that they could probably larger corporate support in Melbourne and maybe even bigger gate takings. But how souless would it make them to relocate simply for money?

PS I was at the Mudchooks game – it was a great spectacle and a fantastic show of community spirit. The Mudchooks were coached throughout the match and at half time by the legends of the game and will be a better team for the experience. For more info see mudchooks.com.au

Don’t just call them the Brumbies, call them the ACT Brumbies!!!
The ARU won’t like it – but the region (ACT and surrounds) know how strong Rugby is here. A lot of places just outside the ACT love sticking it to the “big states” more than we do! They hate the Tahs, and are quite happy when the ACT team flog ’em! How many players come into rugby from regional areas? The ACT is a prime example! But somehow the ACT has to justify its existence? Buggered if I can understand that.
Anyone who knows rugby knows the ACT has a LONG rugby tradition outside “town”…something Rugby used to focus on very strongly. Don’t be ashamed of it…embrace your ACT Brubyism!

PS – anyone who got to the Mudchooks fundraiser on 14/4 – please give me a report!

The talent pool from the current crop of ACT schools is deplorable at best. For the last few years there have been very few local players pushing through the ranks and many of our top prospects get lured to Sydney with scholarships to Kings, Joeys etc. This city will not be able to support a local team for much longer and I tip a Melbourne Brumbies team by 2009. I don’t like to say it because I love the Brumbies, but unfortunately sport is now a business.

If your cold calculus was valid NSW would be the winningest province.

As the facts don’t support your thesis perhaps you need to revisit it?

George Gregan and Steve Larkham didn’t spring fully formed as hardened troopers you know.

There will be more great talent out of the ACT’s schools don’t you worry about that.

I think you’re barking up the wrong tree on this issue guys. The reason the Brumbies will more than likely be moved to Melbourne has nothing to do with the opinions of the NSW based beuracracy, it’s all to do with finance.

If the Brumbies were able to source from major backers to retain the services of Matt Giteau, do you think he would have moved to Perth? Unlikely. The fact is that there is more money in Melbourne than there is in Canberra and therefore more chance of a Melbourne Brumbies outfit securing higher profile players and attracting more sponsors.

I am a massive Brumbies fan and I’d hate to see them moved from Canberra, but business is business. Just look to the old Canberra Cannons as proof of that.

Now with George Gregan and Steven Larkham confirmed as retiring at the end of this season, how are we going to replace them? Huxley isn’t good enough, Ashley-Cooper isn’t either and many of our younger players simply don’t have the experience. If The Brumbies could have attracted the same sort of corporate backing that the Western Force did, then we definitly would have kept Giteau. Now the Australian Rugby Union has made it even harder for players to source outside finances by making it illegal for the clubs to talk to potential sponsors. Canberra, compared to Melbourne has a much lower percentage of major companies calling it home and therefore the sponsorship deals available and much smaller as well. Maybe someone could ask Mr. Stanhope to set aside a few million in the next budget to keep the Brumbies in Canberra, just like he did with the Summernats. I don’t like the chances.

Until next time folks, that’s my 2 cents…

emd, you would be surprised, AFL is very popular in Canberra, no doubt due to the imports from south and west. I would put it at the same as league and union. Its also very popular in the south of NSW, Wagga Wagga down.

As for moving the Brumbies the whole problem is the Brumbies have upset the likes of NSW by actually performing. Look what happened when we were in the finals where did the establishment of NSW want the final, yep the SFS or what ever its called.

NSW Rugby hates ACT rugby with a passion, look at what happened when we had a the ‘burra’s in the NSW comp. They got all scared because again we actually did well, so they kicked us out. We then started playing in the QLD league as the vikings. Maybe they think moving to Melbourne will effect their performance, I doubt it, maybe move the the ‘tahs to Melbourne, or even The Reds!!!

Where shall we start with what’s wrong with that Daily T article?

Obviously they haven’t noticed that AFL and Union are very different games. AFL doesn’t do well here because the local population prefers a different game.

Perhaps they’re following the theory that if you spread a rumour far and wide, eventually it becomes fact. I have been trying this for years at work, but still my work section remains in Canberra instead of being relocated to the South Coast.

Maybe they should move the Pansies down south. See if that helps them in their cause to win their first title.

They will be going. They will be forced by the invisible hand.

Idle speculation.
Just a way to fill column space.

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