The Cronulla Sharks announced a few weeks ago that they would play one game a year for the next three years in Adelaide. The move was seen as a move by the NRL to get a small foothold in Adelaide ahead of possible expansion and a chance for the Sharks to make some much needed money.
So yesterday when the Canterbury Bulldogs announced they would play two games a year in Adelaide, the Sharks blew up…..after all….how dare they!
The Sharks believe that the Bulldogs are underminning them but considering that next year South Australia will host a grand total of three NRL matches, its a pretty hard argument to make. Still, the NRL hasn’t given the same support to the Bulldogs as they did to the Sharks move, which seems utterly ridiculous.
There are simply to many teams in Sydney and with the Sharks struggling financially, surrounded by other NRL clubs and with poor crowds, they Sharks need to look at relocation.
Playing one game a year in Adelaide is not relocation!
The Bulldogs had a terrible season in 2008 all round and I can understand them looking to play a few games away from home over the next few years until they get back on track. The Bulldogs easily have the biggest supporter base in Sydney and in even a decent season can attract close on 20,000 on average to home games.
I think its laughable that the Sharks felt they could play one game in Adelaide and claim exclusivity over the city.
Still, all this talk is just glossing over the fact that there are too many teams in Sydney, too much self intrest ruling the game, and at the end of the day its just a token measure to play one or two games in Perth or Adelaide.
There is no doubt we need teams in Perth and Adelaide. Its a must of the game expect to get more money from broadcasters, especially in these tough economic times we are having.
You have to wonder at what point a struggling club would actually decide to make the move….I can’t imagine what it would take!
The West Tigers have moved all around Sydney trying to find a home. The Sydney Roosters have stopped playing in the junior competitions to cut costs, teams are willing to play in terrible stadiums if they can get good money and yet no teams have decided to bite the bullet and move.
What ever the case, the Sharks don’t own Cronulla these days, let alone Adelaide!