I guess I'm anticipating a round-robin structure to the NPC part of the competition, with no play-offs until you reach the knock-out stage that involves the other countries.
You're right that club rugby doesn't earn money for the province, but people seem concerned that the grassroots oif the game in NZ, which is the clubs, don't get enough contact with the top players. This might help that happen. And those players, as they would be contracted to the province, could be put to use with, say, coaching in schools.
BTW I have no idea where the Ranfurly Shield fits into this, but maybe it could be run as a secondary competition during my playoff scenario?
The problem with some sort of 'top X teams from the domestic competition going on to some further competition' is that you instantly exclude a heap of your players, and at least half your country from any interest in it.
I mean, if Auckland, Waikato and Canterbury make the knockout, you've just shut out over 2 million potential audience members.
So you're saying that no-one other than Man U and Barcelona fans are going to watch the Champions League final?
And why would Wellington contract players to the end of the season if they don't know at the beginning if there would be games for them.
Why do they contract players now, not knowing whether they will make the playoffs or not? Their players that they contracted would miss out on the same amount of rugby as they do now, more or less. And with this approach, maybe they could play some club rugby to help raise the standards there.
You're right that Oz doesn't have a domestic comp, but it could surely run one involving Queensland, NSW, Western and ACT, and add teams from Victoria and South Australia or perhaps on the central/gold coast under this scheme.
How about a season like this: NZ, SA and Oz all run their NPC equivalent in what is now the Super 14 time (maybe starting a bit later....). Top 3 NZ, top 3 SA and top 2 Oz go into a knockout round, played home and away until the final which would be a one-off game at a venue that was decided earlier in the year. This would take 5 weeks, with international matches coming after that. This pushes the internationals later in the year probably, but wouldn't we rather see the All Blacks play in NZ when there's more chance of some sunshine? And wouldn't the European teams be more likely to send their stronger teams at the start of their season rather than at the end?
Each country has a salary cap for each team in its domestic comp. This is used for base salaries, with match fees being separate. Sanzar tops up the monies for each team in the finals tournament to pay for these match fees, meaning that the players would have to play if they wanted to earn the cash.
along with all the other ghastly music my parents used to subject me
I must be younger, because I got all that folk music from the 60's, like the Chad Mitchell Trio. As so brilliantly stated in A Mighty Wind there was abuse in my family but it was mostly musical in nature
Wow, I'm so slow. Well done Alan!
Nice to find another fan. I have all the albums, which makes me a somewhat irrational geek when it comes to TMBG. But that particular song (*warning: true geekiness coming up) is actually an old 1950's song. And they used to do it all the time in the old british show Terry and June whenever they wanted to escape a situation. Still a brilliant band though!
I went and saw Maeve Higgins at Bats and she was awesome. A bit awkward at the start when she did some stuff that the majority of the audience had seen on TV a couple of nights previously, but once past that she really flew.
Having done some stand-up I can say that the hard thing is the lack of audience. I used to be part of regular Sunday night gig at the old Bodega, and the problem was that you generally saw the same peope in the crowd. So you constantly felt like you had to have some new material every week so you didn't get the chance to really hone the stuff you had. That's where songs were useful - people don't seem to mind hearing the same song more than once.
Unfortunately I'm goign to miss Ben Hurley this time around but if you get the chance go and see him. Not only is he fantastic but he works incredibly hard not just on his own stuff but on helping other comedians, so he is well worthy of your support.
Also, seeing other people mentioned Theatreview, I'd be remiss not to link to this review but I am biased!
I don't count Morre Wilson's as a "local" - while it has excellent stuff shopping there is not a leisurely, pleasant experience.
If you're in Welli take a trip south and go to the Island Bay butcher. Especially if you want a terrific sausage. The supermarket across the road has a an excellent range of beer, as you'd expect given that the owner is the guy who makes Bennett's!
And I just splashed out and bought a suit at Mandatory. Totally worth it just to have the help of their staff.
And when cyclists or pedestrians are in a tunnel they have no easy escape route from crazed drivers who delight in driving into them, or even from potential kidnappers or molesters.
Sorry I'm late, I was just playing Grand Theft Auto.....
You're so right about the shoes Haydn. You'd think Adidas wouldn't let the netballers step out in anything other than their own product.
And I like the white too. If you can't have black go for its diametric opposite!