Thursday, September 24, 2015

TBT - I've solved the RWC turnaround problem! (from Sep 2011)

Been meaning to start a regular “Throwback Thursday” slot for a while now - we have a lot of posts from other sites (like the old “Harpin2) we’d like to transfer over here and this seems the best way to do it.

 

These will mostly involve contributions from guest posters, but to kick off we’ll go with this one I penned during the last World Cup in 2011.  It was quite an important post as you can see, for not only did I solve the World Cup turnaround problem, but also the game’s blazers clearly stood up and paid attention ;-)

 

PS - I updated the “pretend” draw to reflect the current World Rugby rankings

 

PPS - It won’t surprise you to know EFS is still tweeting on this issue!


 

Throwback Thursday


I've solved the World Cup problem! 

OK maybe I haven't.

 

BUT...I have discarded the stupid comments and taken the valid ones from Eliota Fuimaono-Sapolu's tweets and tried to make them into a decent solution.

 

Here's an idea how to change the World Cup.

  • Expand to 24 countries
  • Adopt the “cross-pool” fixture format currently used in the LV= Cup.
  • Still have quarterfinals as playoffs using Rugby Champions Cup method (6 pool winners plus 2 best runners up)
  • Offer automatic qualification for next RWC for, say, the best 16 overall to keep more matches relevant.

What I believe this format will achieve :


    1. It means every team plays in every round so no need for midweek matches and thus more equal turnaround times. (12 matches in each round could be played 3 each Thu, Fri, Sat & Sun)

    2. It brings the bonus point into play a lot more than it does with the current format

    3. It prevents situations like one where a team might “prefer” to lose to get an “easier route” to the final, because you should never be sure who plays who in the quarters until all the pool matches are played.

    4. It allows four more “lower tier” nations to get top tournament experience, plus this way they should play one match against a team ranked near them.

    5. The top seeds can be scheduled to play their opponents in order from worst to best so, theoretically anyway, the matches should get more exciting as the tournament progresses (ie less chance of an 87-0 blowout around the halfway stage).

 

I've taken the current rankings and come up with a fictional draw by way of an example...


 

POOL A

POOL B

POOL C

POOL D

POOL E

POOL F

NZL

AUS

ENG

WAL

IRE

RSA

SCO

JPN

SAM

FJI

ARG

FRA

GEO

TGA

ITA

USA

ROM

CAN

HKG

CHI

RUS

SPA

NAM

URU

 

I think the cross-pools should go  AvF  BvE  CvD

 

This means that Ireland's four matches would be against Australia, Japan (yes, I know!!!!), Tonga and Chile and everyone else in our pool would also have to play them.  So although our main pool rivals would be our old World Cup buddies Argentina, we wouldn't actually play them BUT we'd be under pressure to get bonus points in all our matches to be sure and not only stay ahead of them, but also remain in contention for a "best runners-up" slot just in case we need it. 

 

And what's more the format only adds 8 extra matches to the tournament, so it should be manageable.

 

Not suggesting this is a sure-fire system, just trying to get a ball rolling.   Does the process need tinkering with at all?  Have you a better idea? Let's be 'avin em then! JLP

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ABOUT THE TBT AVATAR

 

Found the picture on a now-defunct (appropriately I suppose) site called Rugby-Pioneers.


Apparently it is a postcard with a photo taken from a match between France and Wales in 1911.

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