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What can new league learn from the Australian NRL?

by Staff Writer
23 Apr 2019 at 13:33hrs | Views
February 2019 opened a new chapter in the history of Zimbabwean Rugby League, with four teams competing against one another for two spots in a planned six-team NRL league. Its purpose is obvious, in that it will put Zimbabwe firmly on the map, ensuring that the nation can enjoy a presence in Rugby League World Cups that are presently dominated by the Oceanic nations.

Once seeing its revival stalled by a lack of sponsorship, the planned Zimbabwean NRL could also have a positive knock-on effect for the union form if it becomes the success its lobbyists expect it to be, with neighbouring mortal rivals South Africa enjoying international plaudits generation after generation.  That alone provides Zimbabwe the perfect incentive to adapt to the Australian system as closely as possible, and use that as a foundation on which to nurture future talents.

The first steps towards a successful emulation of the Australian NRL's ideals are already in evidence. By holding the entry playoffs in the first place, those who ply their trade for Zimbabwe's biggest Rugby League teams will know exactly what it takes to fight for something.

The success of the 'All Blacks' is a prime example of this.

This mindset is a common element of success at all levels. However, the potential positive effects an expanded league could have on Zimbabwe's international presence are nothing, without also using some Australian NRL clubs as an example of how to structure a youth system and coach a team to glory.

For a prime example of how to dominate, teams need look no further than 2018 playoff winners, ladder leaders and (at 5/2 across the board) current NRL betting favourites Sydney Roosters.

Though they have admittedly possess vast resources and a history of success at the highest level, the Roosters are the same as any other outfit, in that they use a reliable captain as the nucleus of the team - with the Roosters' captain himself enjoying a strong start to 2019 – and play with unconditional aggression alongside a tireless work ethic.

2018: Sydney Roosters get their most accomplished Grand Final win yet.

While a competitive league is ideal for the sake of sportsmanship, the presence of one dominant team in a newly-expanded Zimbabwean tournament – and key figures within such a club – can inspire future generations to play, grow and approach life in the same way as their heroes.

This, ultimately, can only breathe new life into rugby league culture within a nation that is, for now, utterly eclipsed by its neighbours on the international rugby scene.

As is the case for all well-renowned leagues in the league form, finishing top of the ladder is not enough to become the greatest rugby league team in a single country. The playoff finals are the all-decisive element, and this is an obvious staple for the Zimbabwean system to continue honouring.

As is the case in competitions that are league only, such as the English Premier League, any would-be champion can have the occasional blunder, but there is no hiding place in playoffs. Again, this can only redouble whatever winning mentality exists in the next 'inspirational' Zimbabwean NRL team.

Source - Byo24News