Taranaki keen for Super Rugby …

Interesting little snippet of info that came my way today …

The Taranaki Rugby Football Union will be submitting an expression of interest to the New Zealand Rugby Union with regard to ownership of a Super Rugby franchise.

They stress that careful consideration has been given and that Taranaki Rugby only does so with the best interests of New Zealand rugby at heart. However Taranaki Rugby has ambitions to host a Super Rugby franchise, and has the business model, as well as the financial and public support to do so.

Taranaki Rugby’s first preference for entry into Super Rugby is by way of expansion of the competition and believes that with the right competition structures in place, this is a realistic opportunity.

Taranaki Rugby also understands the broad rationale under-pinning the current geographical arrangements are in the interests of New Zealand rugby. That said, if any existing franchise host was unable to promote a model that was acceptable to the NZRU, then Taranaki is ready and able to be considered.

Taranaki Rugby believes the current model of 19 professional and semi-professional teams is unsustainable. We believe there should be an expansion in the number of Super teams, balanced by a significant reduction in the salary cap for payments to players in the current ITM Cup. This would allow an ambitious Union like Taranaki to become a franchise host, while reducing the overall costs to New Zealand rugby, and hopefully eliminating the problems currently being experienced by the Otago Rugby Union.

Taranaki Rugby will be positioned to host a franchise should an opportunity arise in 2013, or at some point beyond.

So clearly …

Taranaki have spotted the goings on in SA, and should the competition expand to a traumatic Super 18, then they would be ready to pounce …

Taranaki have seen the light re the liquidation of the Otago Rugby Union, and their suggestion of a  salary cap for payments to players in the current ITM Cup along with an increase in Super Rugby franchises is an interesting one. It makes more sense with central contracting, but were something similar to happen in SA, a model consisting of just 8 “Super” franchises could emerge with the smaller unions being amalgamated into these franchises … Either that or the smaller unions become semi pro with a salary cap …




  1. Don’t know why the Heineken Cup model continues to be overlooked. Small ‘champions league’ pools which play throughout the domestic season with the best performing teams qualifying.

    You could include Japanese and Argentine teams.

    They won’t because Aussies don’t have domestic rugby. But their five could eff around on their own in between – we all hate Aussie derbies anyway.

    You could have up to 30 teams in the competition and once knock-out happens there would be Cup, Plate and so on. So the minnows could still battle it out.

    Currie Cup and NPC could continue and everyone is happy.


    1. @Primate … Completely agree. I have said the same thing (i.e. Heineken Cup model) time and again on my own blog. The solution is actually fairly simply if people were willing to put their egos aside. With that said, IT WILL NEVER HAPPEN!

    2. Has potential, just hate that MASSIVE gap between pool games and the quarter finals for the HC … But one could work that out. I do find it incredibly complex to follow as well. Still a BIG fan of the old Super12 …

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