The ARU and NZRU are close to announcing the fourth Bledisloe Cup test will be played in Tokyo. Anyone have any ideas where the most likely venue for this match will be?
Yokohama would be the obvious choice. Hopefully the next Rugby Union World Cup is held in Japan...
Far too risky with likely poor crowds. the football world cup 2002 had many poor crowds. would rugby really do better?
I would say Italy, centred in the north, right next to the french rugby heartland. Its both safe and expansionist and with Juventus new stadium as well as genoa and the san siro in Milan the venues should be there.
some games could possibly be taken over the border to France or even northern Spain or Switzerland, which has already seen european cup rugby
Your true colours are coming through Swede. Rugby needs to expand outside its traditional strongholds - and no, the traditional rules aren't going to do that either. Just look at the state of international rugby league. I was against NZ getting the RWC in 2011, France in 2007 and even Australia in 2003 (even though I went to all the Pool games held in Perth). Give it to the unions that need the world cup to help springboard into being truly competitive international teams, especially those that don't have the access to the competitive blocks such as six nations or tri nations. Like the USA and Canada, Argentina and Urguay and Japan. They need it, we (ie the SANZAR and six-nations countries) don't.
The one good reason for NZ getting the 2011 RWC is it that it will get the financial reward it deserves for maintaining the best brand in Rugby - the All Blacks, something the NH nations have reaped the benefit from for years and returned the favour by sending south their second rate teams.
Expand, yes. Within reason. If Japan could provide financial guarantees and present a case for how reasonable attendances will be achieved, then fine. I just dont think they can, and poor crowds will devalue the brand rather than expand anything.
Italy may be member of the sixnations but rugby is not yet a major sport there. but its growing and a world cup would make a real difference while at the same time be profitable because of the geography, timezones and available stadiums. Is it not expansion if its in europe?
For who´s sake do you want to change the rules? Where is the evidence, that a dumbed-down version would do any good, especially as crowds are dropping in the places that adopted all the ELVs but growing elsewhere.
As for NZ being exploited by the north, thats just nonsense. November tests are increasingly played on a profit-sharing basis, which is why NZ want to come to Twickenham every year.
Sure, the june tests are crap, but nothing can be done about that, they should just be ditched.
It seems you under-estimate the fast-growing influence of the club game.
Here are two crowds from the stade de france in paris this season.
November: France v Australia, att: 70,000
last week : St. Francais v Clermont, att: 79,000
Rugby is not football just yet, but its going that way. Soon internationals outside of tournaments will be of little more interest than a football friendly and nothing to base the game around.