John Kear has taken a stab at explaining why rugby union seems to excel in areas that rugby league doesn’t despite the fact “our game is twice as good as rugby union.”
Kear has of course been in the game a long time and has won the Challenge Cup with Sheffield Eagles and Hull FC.
Now at the Widnes Vikings, Kear is also Wales coach and he has had his say on the struggles of international rugby.
Speaking on BBC 5 Live recently, Kear said:
“Our game is twice as good as rugby union, there’s no doubt about that. But what they have got is this nailed down Six Nations, autumn internationals, World Cup. I know they’re centrally contracted but they have nailed the international game.
“Their international fixtures are booked for years in advance so people can book hotels and travel and it makes for a greater occasion. It becomes very very difficult for players and fans to plan for the future in our game in regard to internationals.”
International rugby is certainly something IMG have targeted.
However, it is still unclear who England will face this autumn after a clash with France in April though Jenna Brooks recently revealed on Sky Sports that it looks like being Kristian Woolf’s Tonga.
Samoa were another option after defeating England in the semi-finals of the World Cup last year.
England RU players are no longer fully centrally contracted the rugby premiership took back this central control after England won the World Cup .. in Ireland they are centrally contracted , number of games a player can play is contracted so it is to the benefit to the national side . This is why they have such an incredible system from grass roots through regional to international the IRU have control.
Rugby league isn’t a superior game it’s essentially a different game both are great games and RL desperately needs to take a leaf out of Rugby Union’s book in terms of international fixtures and even a return of a lions tour every 2-4 yrs . International Rugby League draws in TV & therefore sponsorship and thus money which can be utilised for grassroots or lower league teams to develop talent
I’d agree with that summary