Columnist Claims National Rugby League Concerned Over Business, Not Product
It appears National Rugby League CEO Dave Smith and the independent commission "are more concerned about making money and the business side of the game rather than the actual football product," according to Phil Rothfield of the Sydney DAILY TELEGRAPH. Rothfield opined that the emphasis today "is on the bottom line, higher prices for tickets, selling more memberships and moving to the bigger stadiums to improve the financial stability of the clubs." There is "nothing wrong with that as the long as the product you are trying to flog is in good shape." Rothfield noted that last season "both crowds and TV ratings were way down on previous seasons." The big question "is why." He asked, "Was it the quality of football? A poor marketing campaign?" More importantly, "what has been done over the off-season to: Get more live games on free to air television. Make sure State of Origin doesn't ruin the premiership for nine weeks" (DAILY TELEGRAPH, 12/15).