In an ironic move by the New Zealand Rugby League considering the name of the Test is the ANZAC Test, the NZRL has said that the 2008 game will be their last mid season test against Australia because they are unable to compete with the World Champions in the fixture.
Despite the fact the game draws big crowds, is a ratings success and put quite a bit of money into the game in New Zealand, the powers that be have made the decision to do away with it.
Its quote typical of the NZRL really.
Take a look at the results of the ANZAC Test matches played since 1998:
2007 Australia def. New Zealand 30-6
2006 Australia def. New Zealand 50-12
2005 Australia def. New Zealand 32-16
2004 Australia def. New Zealand 37-10
2000 Australia def. New Zealand 56-0
1999 Australia def. New Zealand 20-14
1998 New Zealand def. Australia 22-16
Of course, this is all Australia’s fault, as it always is. Due to the preparation time given (The same preparation Australia has) and the fact that Super League club don’t release players for the game (Which is the case for both sides….not that I would select any UK based New Zealanders in the side anyway), they have had enough.
So, in true ANZAC spirit (Yeah right!)…the Kiwis have taken their bat and ball and gone home.
Keep in mind, this is the same nation that refused to play Test matches after the State Of Origin series because they called it an “Ambush” when Australia trounced them.
This comes on the back of a report that the NZRL has approached a number of New Zealand rugby union players to take part in the end of year All Golds Tour.
The NZRL has always been full of stupidity and ego and these decisions just add to the long line of dreadful moves they have made. Its no wonder that in a country where “Rugby” is such a big part of every day life, Rugby League in New Zealand is in a shambolic state.
Its the reason why every single good New Zealand Rugby League player in the game today was nurtured and developed in Australia.
Just in the last few years the NZRL have come up with:
Letting Nathan Fien play for New Zealand despite the fact they KNEW he didn’t qualify. Then when found out, saying they thought the Grand Parent rule took in Great Grand Parents and I quote “because they are basically the same thing”.
No More Ambushes from Australia
When Australia played New Zealand after the State Of Origin series a few years ago, New Zealand were unmercifully smashed, as usual. The Kiwi’s blamed this on State Of Origin and now refused to play Tests after the series because, and I quote “Its an ambush”. heaven forbid a Test match is about one team wanting to beat another.
Let Kiwi’s Play State Of Origin
The head of the New Zealand Rugby League come up with the idea that New Zealand players should be allowed to take part in the State Of Origin series. This at the same time as they looked at building their own Origin style series. Effectively, they undermined their own idea.
Scrapping The ANZAC Test Despite Ratings, Crowd And Financial Success
NZRL chairman Andrew Chalmers confirmed the news, saying: “We won’t be making our decisions around the Kiwis solely on a commercial basis any more: winning is precious, and pride in the jersey is precious”. Uhhh…so to is playing games, getting exposure and making money so you can run your sport!
Offering The Places Of Rugby League Player To Union Players In The All Golds Tour
Because its not like a celebration of Rugby League and the first test match played between a New Zealand side and British side should be enjoyed by….you know….Rugby League players!
In short, stupidity is par for the course when it comes to the NZRL.