Super Rugby lost its ‘super’ many years ago
cannot realistically say the motivation level is the same, after having to lift yourself for not-so-Super campaign, after not-so-Super campaign.
You can tell the competition is in ICU because even traditional spectator strongholds like New Zealand have started mushrooming empty seats. Back in the day, a semi-final between the Crusaders and the Hurricanes would have been filled to the rafters. Yesterday, it was just another fixture, another step closer to the end of another slog.
You wonder what it would take for someone to get the North and the South to sit down, and negotiate a global game of domestic thrones. The Kings and the Cheetahs have already tested the waters, and found them agreeable. The travel is not so bad, and the crowds are quite tickled by the prospect of new names, new destinations, and new cultures to get accustomed to.
Imagine, if you dare, Racing Metro bringing their euros and their French flair to Christchurch every year, and then the Stormers popping up somewhere in Ireland on a wet and windy Friday night. We can but dream, because those flights of fancy are a lot more tantalising than the prospect of yet another Kiwi triumph.
As much as New Zealand and their people love rugby, they too must be bored of their domestic dictatorship, which then leads onto the Rugby Championship. Let them hear some different accents on a regular basis, and even see some of their former stars in different jumpers.
Somewhere, out there, rugby’s equivalent of Lalit Modi must be plotting, carefully assembling the expensive pieces of this puzzle.
If only they could hurry the process along, and take us all out of our collective misery. One more week, for that final between God Knows Who, against Who Even Cares…