New Zealand get another helping hand from the schedulers
are SANZAAR going to pep up their ailing tournament by bringing a little even handedness to the competition? The schedule for this year’s tournament was released earlier this week and yet again perennial winners New Zealand have been granted the ideal scenario with three of their first four games at home.
As per usual they face a short hop over the Tasman to meet Australia before three homes games on the trot, against the Aussies again, Argentina and then South Africa. By the time the teams go into the Round 5 – when the tournament could already be over – the Kiwis will have spent less than six hours in the air.
Contrast that with Argentina who will have already completed one return trip to Durban and then, after a home match against the South Africans in Mendoza, a journey to Nelson to play New Zealand followed by more travelling to Brisbane to play Australia. I make that a minimum of 60 hours in the air.
The situation for South Africa is little better and this is clearly something SANZAAR need to get to grips with.
There is no reason why every other season New Zealand and Australia should not have their schedule loaded so they are required to do most of their travelling at the front end of the tournament.