So how do you suggest that rugby moves forward? Leave it up to the home nations to show us The One True Way? Given that they weren't even interested in trialling the ELV's it looks like we'll be seeing their mind-numbing rugby for years to come. I'm not saying the ELV's are perfect, but they certainly make for a game which at least has some excitement and could even make an Aussie Rules fan convert.
Arguably, even the most tradition-bound of games, Cricket, is moving forward, finding new ways to widen its appeal. WG Grace I'm sure would be excited to see where Cricket is today but I doubt the young William Webb Ellis would be so proud of rugby.
If the game is so mind-numbing in the north, how come its doing so well with crowds growing everywhere at all levels. Barely a week goes by without crowds of 80,000
Laws cant be changed just to lure interest from some AFL´ers, just like soccer doesnt double the size of the goal because som new followers might prefer scores of 9-7
I think most people would agree rugby could work better at the breakdown but it doesnt mean its in huge trouble or that all change is great.
The aim should be to draw defenders out of the line. The best solution is no doubt too technical for me, but the IRB have launched a multi-year study into the workings of the scrum, probably for safety reasons, and I suggest they do the same for evertyhing about the breakdown.
They should look at the NFL, that has lots of complicated specific rules and disciplined players who understand them. Rugby needs the same. There is too much confusion, interpretation or relying on conventions from the amateur era, that dont work well and then gets banned without alternatives found such as letting a player taste studs if he was killing the ball on the ground.
But still the game is great and as its outgrowing RL ever more, why take the game in that direction ? It makes no sense.