Should Australia Have Five Super Rugby Teams?

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I have just read about another young New Zealand rugby player heading to the Western Force with young Tasman winger Mitchell Scott grabbing a two year deal.  It is great for him, but surely it is a bit strange seeing all of these New Zealand and South African players needed to bolster Australian Super Rugby teams.  Should New Zealand be allowed a sixth team, like South Africa?  Surely, we are now widely aware of the lack of depth of Australian rugby, but you could probably make a team out of the New Zealanders or South Africans playing in Australia.  Is it really good for Australia to have so many teams when they need players from other countries to remain competitive?


It has provided some players from New Zealand and South Africa with an overseas experience without leaving the Southern Hemisphere and it has given some players a Super Rugby lifeline, but is it really helping the depth of Australian rugby or not, when they rely on getting leftover players from other countries?  Mind you, it has worked with players like Henry Speight and Clyde Rathbone in the past.

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It is borderline to know if New Zealand could sustain a sixth team or if New Zealand should host a Pacific Islands team in Auckland?


Should Australia only have five Super Rugby teams?  Or is it alright that they use players from South Africa and New Zealand to bolster their teams?  Is it also alright that they usually have a team or two struggling in Super Rugby?


Players like Alby Matthewson, and Jason Woodward have helped the Australian teams out, but unless these players can then play for the Wallabies, you wonder if there is much point picking them?  Daniel Braid and Adam Thomson are two All Blacks who have played for the Reds in recent seasons, but are they blocking the path for local players or is there simply not enough depth?

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3 comments

  1. Dreadful article – How can you make the claim that it’s a bad thing that Australian teams are bringing in foreign players..? Every team will do what they can to find the best possible options to better their squad. The entire point of Super 15 in Australia isn’t to find players for the Wallabies, it’s to provide quality rugby for fans in each respective franchise’s city. “Is it also alright that they usually have a team or two struggling in super rugby”? Sorry but what conference on the planet doesn’t have “a team or two struggling”. In fact, the only Aussie S15 franchise that has consistently finished poorly over the past few years has been, go figure, the most recent expansion team. All 3 conferences have had “struggling” sides over the past year, with South African teams having a dreadful couple of years, the worst being this one. Pointless article by someone with little understanding of the workings of professional sport.

  2. I am simply looking for a reason why the Wallabies are struggling so much and have slipped to 5th in the World Rugby rankings. Could it be something similar to what has happened with the English Premier League? With all due respect “guest”, the New Zealand conference doesn’t have struggling teams, with the Blues finishing a respectable 10th last season. Maybe do some homework first before shooting from the hip! Even the Blues have won Super Rugby titles and won plenty of games last season, yet why does Australia deserve five teams?

    Does the ARU not have the overuling power of authority in Australian franchises? I know in NZ the NZRU rules over the franchises, although they are looking to make the NZ franchises private. But having good players in Super Rugby that are elligible for international rugby makes for a better international team doesn’t it?

    One could argue the same thing for the South African conference too as you have Australian teams in 13th and 15th place and South African teams in 11th, 12th and 14th.

    Thanks for such a positive comment. Please do your homework first before swinging wildly from the hip.

  3. Hi Scott, very popular topic that has been largely talked about recent years.
    I think we have to consider that this is a pro rugby where any player can play for any team that they wish to.
    This is actually to aid the rugby union as a sport by providing higher interest and entertainment. Just like the EPL and NRL etc.
    Also if you want to have 6 NZ teams, which I think is perfectly fine idea. It is probably best to add another team rather than taking away a team from Australia.
    Since the idea of taking away a team from Australia will simply never happen and shouldn’t since Australia has larger population and have better gross profit which normally attract more people and help the best sport in the world, bigger.
    Also, there will always be a struggling team and that is how competition works.
    This should not always be looked at as a conference battle but individual team like the NBA, where there are teams who constantly come last in their conference or division however, no one brings up the idea of taking them out or replacing them with another team.
    At the end of the day, Super rugby is just a competition to make profit, of course other great things come along as well such as attracting new rugby fans, providing players with more experience and intense season.

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