Next years NRL All Star Game could be scrapped with concerns over player burnout and a crowded fixture list worrying clubs according to the Daily Telegraph.
A final decision will be made at a meeting of NRL CEO’s this week with the proposed Rugby League 9’s competition in Auckland expected to take priority over the All Stars Game.
I personally believe the NRL All Star concept is ready for a big of a change anyway. I would like to see the Indigenous All Stars playing against a Polynesian All Stars team.
The Rugby League 9’s tournament sounds like it could be great for the game. I worry that the NRL clubs, who are clearly fixated in the prize money on offer, will do their best to lock non NRL teams out of the tournament though.
It would be great for Rugby League 9’s to become a way for other nations to develop players. I would like to see residence sides from Pacific Islands nations as well as European nations entering teams in the competition. I’d also like to see Super League clubs and USARL clubs invited too.
That is all probably wishful thinking though. I can’t see NRL clubs wanting to see the prize money on offer diluted to that point. They will no doubt say that logistically it would be impractical.
At least Rugby League 9’s is being revisited and hopefully it will least to more 9’s tournaments played down the track.
As for the All Star Game, I don’t buy that player burnout will be an issue. Hopefully if they do decide to rest the All Star Game next year it will simply serve to build more demand for it heading into 2015.