Australian Rugby League

Topics: Rupert Murdoch, National Rugby League, Kerry Packer Pages: 8 (2307 words) Published: January 23, 2000
This report investigates the epic battle
between the Australian Rugby League which has been
around for 87 years and the Super League concept for the
control of Rugby League in Australia. One man, Mr Rupert
Murdoch, is trying to take over and run a rebel Super
League to enhance his power and for financial gain. This
Super League is proposed to run in 1996 with a 10 team
competition as its prospectus. This report reviews the
history of the Australian Rugby League, the battle between
Mr.Murdoch and Mr.Packer, the battle of who controls
pay television, the players future and junior development.
This conflict is mainly based on power, greed and money.
The two protagonist's are prepared to go to any lengths to
achieve supremacy. I have researched archives,
newspapers, pamphlets and watched television to
accumulate information of this divisive conflict. 2. The
History of the A.R.L. The Australian Rugby League
originated in 1908 which was then known as the N.S.W.
Rugby League. The game of Rugby League was born long
ago and faraway, on the 29th of August 1895 in the stately
George Hotel Huddersfield Yorkshire, England. Originally
15 a side teams were reduced to 13 in 1906 and Rugby
League's trademark the play the ball was introduced. The
changes large and small laid the foundations for the fast
moving thrilling game that Rugby League has become. On
the evening of August 8 the N.S.W Rugby League was
formed with a secret meeting at Sydney's Batemans Hotel.
The men driving the new game were: The entrepreneur
James Joseph Giltinan, the great cricketer Victor Trumper,
the influential politician Henry Clammond Hoyle. The
supreme master stroke being the signing of Rugby Unions
champion Herbert Henry Dally Messenger at a fee of 180
pounds. In the summer of 1907-08 more meetings resulting
in the formation of 9 clubs: Glebe, Newtown, South
Sydney, Eastern Suburbs, Western Suburbs, Balmain,
North Sydney, Newcastle which only lasted until 1909,
and Cumberland. However Cumberland had trouble
enticing sufficient players and was forced to amalgamate
with Western Suburbs the following season. Rugby
League's first season began on Easter Monday 1908 on a
wave of unrivalled enthusiasm. To South Sydney went the
honour of being Rugby Leagues first champions 14-12
victors over Eastern Suburbs in the premiership final. Over
the years more teams have been introduced to make an
expanded competition, to strengthen and promote the game
locally, nationally and at this present time internationally. The teams that have joined since the inaugural competition
include: 1910 Annandale which folded in 1920. 1920
University which folded in 1937. 1921 St George. 1935
Canterbury. 1947 Manly and Parramatta. 1967 Cronulla
and Penrith. 1982 Canberra and Illawarra. 1983 Newtown
were expelled due to financial problems. 1988 Brisbane,
Gold Coast and Newcastle. During the 1994 Rugby
League season the N.S.W. Rugby League passed a motion
to expand the 16 team competition to a 20 team
competition incorporating a team from Western Australia, 2
more teams from Queensland and a team from New
Zealand. It was also agreed to change the name from the
N.S.W Rugby League to the Australian Rugby League also
known as the A.R.L as a true reflection of what it
represents. The 1995 season promised to be the pinnacle
of the league's endeavours with the expanded 20 teams
which included 4 new teams namely: Auckland Warriors
from New Zealand. North Queensland Cowboy's based in
Townsville. South Queensland Crushers located in
Brisbane. Western Reds from the far west Perth. Rugby
League as a truly Australian story is abound with wonderful
characters such as - Messenger, Horder, Stehr, Churchill,
Gasnier, Raper, Reddy, Fulton, Lewis, Sterling. The
Immortals are recognised as Rugby League's finest
post-war exponents, Clive Churchill, Reg Gasnier, John
Raper and Bob Fulton had a creative excellence that
comes along all to rarely. 3....

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