AFL and Australian Football
- A RESURGENT Richmond is leading a booming season of AFL attendances — without a single Friday night fixture. The Tigers have pulled crowds of 705,459 to 14 matches, ahead of Collingwood on 696,944. Richmond’s home game average of 60,920 is the highest in the club’s history — up 48 per cent on last year when the Tigers bombed out of finals contention.
- If Tasmania are ever to get their own footy team, AFL icon Kevin Sheedy believes its people have to start selling their state better. Sheedy is concerned that he doesn’t see the same energy being put into tourism advertising in the Apple Isle as he has seen in Queensland, which now boasts two AFL teams.
NRL and Rugby League
- Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson has hit out at the NRL over their management of this year’s draw, accusing them of letting down their rivalry with South Sydney. The lead up to the match has also been dwarfed by Origin build up, with much of the focus this week centred around the Blues and Maroons’ camps.
- The Rugby League Players’ Association has written off hundreds of millions of dollars worth of revenue streams in its demand for a fixed share of the game’s spoils, but the concession has done nothing to progress a collective bargaining agreement with the NRL.
- Jarryd Hayne says NRL players are 10 to 15 years behind the NFL in demanding a fair pay deal from their governing body but are borrowing from the approach taken by his former colleagues by sticking together
- A new contracting system limiting mid-season player movement has been brokered in the first breakthrough in rugby league’s pay dispute, but it’s not enough to placate furious NRL stars from again hinting at industrial action.
- NRL players are preparing to take their wage war with the governing body onto the field with plans to demonstrate their angst during premiership matches. It is understood players will consider scribbling messages of unity on strapping tape on their wrists and may wear something either during or before games.
- The integrity of the NRL is under a cloud with players from several clubs being investigated for taking secret benefits or cash payments in a likely breach of salary cap rules.
- POLICE have uncovered what they believe could be a raft of spot fixing, money laundering and illegal third party payments during their investigation into alleged NRL match fixing. One of the cash payments being investigated is as much as $300,000 and involves an NRL player.
- Manly have denied breaching the NRL’s salary cap after a report landed them at the centre of the game’s latest scandal.
- All 30 of NSWRL’s women’s Origin pathways players will now have official contracts with the organisation, which includes match payments for the interstate challenge as well as a daily allowance when in camps
- The NRL is on the verge of selling the struggling Newcastle Knights in a multi-million dollar deal that will ensure the club becomes a long-term rugby league powerhouse. The Daily Telegraph understands the purchasers — the thriving Wests Leagues club group which made a $23 million profit last year — will commit up to $10 million to new centre of excellence and a cash injection into grassroots football in the Hunter as part of the agreement.
A-league and other football
- FIFA has rejected Football Federation Australia’s proposed new congress model and will send a joint FIFA/AFC delegation to try and end FFA’s impasse with stakeholders. FIFA has given FFA until November 30 to have a new congress in place before it steps in and establishes a normalisation committee.
- AUSTRALIA’S most important World Cup qualifier in four years will be held at AAMI Park. The Socceroos will play Thailand at Melbourne’s 30,000-seat rectangular stadium on Tuesday, September 5.
- FOOTBALL Federation Australia has defended its decision to slash all Futsalroos funding for the next year, calling the unpopular move a “necessary short-term measure” amid wider cost-cutting.
- SBS picks up a steal as FFA fails to sell the TV rights for Arsenal tour
- The Sydney Cricket and Sports Ground Trust has raised concerns about the safety of Allianz Stadium with the NSW government in a move that could prompt a renewed examination of the feasibility of a total rebuild of the ageing venue.