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Thread: We're on telly this Saturday...

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    Very interesting to look at the crowds for those games especially Wire and dont forget Workington always brought a few for a day out. Also a comparison between Salford and Wakey in the division below, that new stadium hammered Salford.

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    Looking back to the 70's-80's at some of those games just shows how the game has changed. What a fabulous game the 1985 cup final was, despite it involving Wigan, an iconic sport occasion that is probably up in the top 10 of sporting occasions anywhere and of any sport. But many of the finals from that era were at least very good games and it wasnt just the challenge cup finals.

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    I glad that the cuttings went down well and brought back some happy memories

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    Quote Originally Posted by Cyprus View Post
    Very interesting to look at the crowds for those games especially Wire and dont forget Workington always brought a few for a day out. Also a comparison between Salford and Wakey in the division below, that new stadium hammered Salford.
    It shows how despite the lies/hype from some of the powers that be crowds have dwindled in many cases. If you look at that cutting there are strong attendances in relative terms through all divisions. Rochdale would be pleased with half of that attendance these days. Similarly Dewsbury and Hunslet would be unlikely to draw up nearly as many as below. Even Barrow in that division. Then you gave London there - nearly 10k when they were riding in the wave of moderate success and publicity.

    Despite many teams giving season tickets away in the recent past for a blue peter badge and 100 Tesco points, the game has suffered through atrocious management by the RFL and Sky taking advantage of this and making our game play the court jester.

    Small wonder the gravy train for Wood and Rimmer and their mouthpiece scumbag Hetherington was derailed in the hardest sense by practical and sound minded men such as Mr. McManus.

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    Would a return to semi professional status eventually return the style of the game to the one that we want to see ie more attack minded without the emphasis on defence? Would the crowds then return to the game?


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    Quote Originally Posted by eddiewaringsflatcap View Post
    It shows how despite the lies/hype from some of the powers that be crowds have dwindled in many cases. If you look at that cutting there are strong attendances in relative terms through all divisions. Rochdale would be pleased with half of that attendance these days. Similarly Dewsbury and Hunslet would be unlikely to draw up nearly as many as below. Even Barrow in that division. Then you gave London there - nearly 10k when they were riding in the wave of moderate success and publicity.
    There'll always be winners and losers in the attendance game, 46000 total attendance on a bank holiday weekend which includes Wigan Saints I'd say was quite poor, and to be fair there was a fair few tickets given out in them days too!

    Saints, Wire, Wigan, Leeds, Hull, Cas all have bigger crowds to name a few, however that appears to be at the demise of many lower league clubs

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    Quote Originally Posted by Greengrass View Post
    76 was hot I worked with a bloke who had to work on the Saturday morning he jumped on his motorbike (something like a 1000cc Vincent) and set off to Wembley disregarding speed limits he got there in time for the game. He said it was that hot the gap on his wrists between his sleeves and his gloves was burnt to a crisp.

    87 was a bit of a contrast; our coach set off in a shower of hail & snow.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Travelvocation View Post
    Would a return to semi professional status eventually return the style of the game to the one that we want to see ie more attack minded without the emphasis on defence? Would the crowds then return to the game?


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    But were crowds better then? Attendances have dipped a bit over the last couple of seasons but they're still miles better overall than they were at any point in the '70s, '80s or '90s (Cup Finals excepted).

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dux View Post
    But were crowds better then? Attendances have dipped a bit over the last couple of seasons but they're still miles better overall than they were at any point in the '70s, '80s or '90s (Cup Finals excepted).
    It's a strange one, I can't see any reason why cup attendences have fallen, it doesn't really matter Sky's agenda against it if people still want to go then just go. What I will say is I can see a reason why lower league attendances have fallen away as most teams have next to no chance of ever making SL let alone competing plus there's much more choice of things to do so who wants to watch crappy RL, played in a dump of a ground with a few hundred others watching? I can't imagine it's great for the players either to be honest but at least they have something to aspire to.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Dave View Post
    It's a strange one, I can't see any reason why cup attendences have fallen, it doesn't really matter Sky's agenda against it if people still want to go then just go. What I will say is I can see a reason why lower league attendances have fallen away as most teams have next to no chance of ever making SL let alone competing plus there's much more choice of things to do so who wants to watch crappy RL, played in a dump of a ground with a few hundred others watching? I can't imagine it's great for the players either to be honest but at least they have something to aspire to.
    I think years ago not as many people could afford season tickets and didn't go to every game. So they could afford the finals, in addition there was no play offs and GF making the cup a bigger draw.
    It's a pity that some of the great names of the past have fallen so low, I remember Swinton being one of the games we all waited for, they were scattered with international players.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Dave View Post
    It's a strange one, I can't see any reason why cup attendences have fallen, it doesn't really matter Sky's agenda against it if people still want to go then just go. What I will say is I can see a reason why lower league attendances have fallen away as most teams have next to no chance of ever making SL let alone competing plus there's much more choice of things to do so who wants to watch crappy RL, played in a dump of a ground with a few hundred others watching? I can't imagine it's great for the players either to be honest but at least they have something to aspire to.

    RL has slipped out of 'cultural relevance' in many places. As you say, a lot of this is down to people having other stuff to do and societal changes reducing the attractiveness of the sport, not least the breakdown of a sense of community and associating this in part with the local rugby league club. The only spectator sports that have blossomed have been those with blanket media coverage, which are perceived to be 'in'.

    Our top clubs still maintain decent crowds because their chance of success has people wanting to be associated with that celebratory feeling. But clubs lower down the ladder don't have this attraction.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Dave View Post
    It's a strange one, I can't see any reason why cup attendences have fallen...
    My own theory on this, for the final at least, is that it used to be RL's 'big day out' to the capital. Lot's of neutrals attending just for the fun of it.
    Now we have the MW, the Grand Final with similar (some say bigger) status, plus a handful of club games way beyond the traditional heartlands, including two teams in London for some.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angry Dave View Post
    It's a strange one, I can't see any reason why cup attendences have fallen, it doesn't really matter Sky's agenda against it if people still want to go then just go. What I will say is I can see a reason why lower league attendances have fallen away as most teams have next to no chance of ever making SL let alone competing plus there's much more choice of things to do so who wants to watch crappy RL, played in a dump of a ground with a few hundred others watching? I can't imagine it's great for the players either to be honest but at least they have something to aspire to.
    I can't prove this at all, but I think Cup attendances have fallen for the same two reasons that play-off crowds are also a bit crap in comparison to the weekly rounds. Namely, a) season ticket culture is a far bigger thing in the sport than it used to be, and b) nearly all big games are on TV.

    People give their clubs their annual wedge at the start of the year for a season ticket and it gets them 13 guaranteed games. It's a decent wedge especially if you are buying a couple in a household or more if you take the kids etc. Anything over and above that lay out is now being deemed to be a luxury, and so Cup and play off games are the things people are opting out of. The luxury extras are now a Grand Final if you get there, or Magic Weekend. They are the big extras that will entice fans to pay that extra bit over their season ticket lay out, not a Cup QF at home.

    I remember back in the day less people had STs and you could see that people would pick and choose games more, so the Wigan, Widnes and big Cup games were the big crowds of the season, with everything else at a lower average level than today. We had thousands of 'non regulars' that didn't go (or couldn't afford to go) every week but would go to the bigger games, Cup SFs etc. We don't seem to have that number of floating fans anymore because season ticket and TV culture has meant that some of those types of people now have a season ticket or don't have to go to the glamour games because they can watch them on TV.

    Wigan on Good Friday or Boxing Day was either 'go the game or miss it' when I was a kid. Nowadays it's 'spend 30 or watch it in the pub or at home on Sky'. It's a big difference. And the Cup is worse in a way because the option is 'spend 30 or watch it on free TV'. The type of fan that 25 years ago had to pick games and therefore chose to go to the Wigan game and the home Cup QF because they were too big to miss doesn't have to go now because it's on TV.

    We probably had about 7k regulars back when I was a kid and about the same number of non regulars who would bolster the crowd for Wigan, a big Cup game and would travel to a Cup SF. We now have about 10-11k regulars and thousands of fans that don't go hardly ever. I think the club is happier with 10-11k regulars than 7k, but apart from Good Friday our home crowds tend to sit within quite a narrow band nowadays because we don't have non regulars pitching up 4 or 5 times a year, and the 10-11k regulars contain about 4-5k who think that their outlay of a ST is enough and don't wish to go to other games.

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    Some good points above, the season ticket culture is massive now, you either pay it monthly or at the start of the season and don't really think of the money again..

    Imagine if games were postponed if you'd paid 25 a fortnight at the moment, you'd be going mad, but the monetary value is forgotten.. that's why I think a lot of people miss quite a few games a year and are happy to.

    The other thing is people would rather spend their money on other events, Magic being one, Catalans away, Toronto Away, even internationals. For me I'd much rather go see England vs Australia at Tottenham, which would be cheaper than watching, say Wigan vs Warrington at Wembley, where in all likelihood I would get some abuse in the name of 'banter'

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    Quote Originally Posted by Belgian Saint
    I think years ago not as many people could afford season tickets and didn't go to every game. So they could afford the finals, in addition there was no play offs and GF making the cup a bigger draw.
    It's a pity that some of the great names of the past have fallen so low, I remember Swinton being one of the games we all waited for, they were scattered with international players.
    Quote Originally Posted by KentishBarry View Post
    My own theory on this, for the final at least, is that it used to be RL's 'big day out' to the capital. Lot's of neutrals attending just for the fun of it.
    Now we have the MW, the Grand Final with similar (some say bigger) status, plus a handful of club games way beyond the traditional heartlands, including two teams in London for some.
    I think both of these have a lot to do with it.

    Another thing that I've wondered about, which is closely related to Kentish Barry's point, is that there was once the draw of seeing your team play an immense stadium that was unlike anything else in the country. Since the mid '90s big and modern stadia have gradually become the norm. Walking out into the stands at Wembley is still pretty special, but it's not the unique, jaw-dropping experience it once was.

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    I think there is a lot of sense in what has been written about declining cup competitions. Before the grand final concept super league and the challenge cup were seen as equals, however now the grand final seems to be so much more important. Also the cup keeps being shunted around the season with huge gaps between the rounds, it needs to a competition which gains momentum for clubs supporters and the media.

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    Quote Originally Posted by banburysaint View Post
    From my 1996 season scrap book. On the eve of the game a Wigan director was being questioned by the police according to the clipping.

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    Look at the number of points scored in the SL games that round of games!!

    Thanks for sharing those cuttings too, great memories!
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    I think part of the decline is due to less travelling supporters. Go back 20 to 25 years and I went to more or less every game, home and away. Traffic wasn't that bad. Who is going to go travel to away games on a Thursday or Friday evening now. If you leave after work you might just get to Simister Island by kick off time. The Boulevard and Craven Park are just distant memories for me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by warringtonsaint View Post
    Look at the number of points scored in the SL games that round of games!!

    Thanks for sharing those cuttings too, great memories!
    The scores were bonkers that year. I did a geeky statistical comparison between it and the 94-95 season for my Maths A-Level and the total scorelines were way up. It was as if the attacking side of the game felt the benefit of going full time before the defensive side did. It was also the first summer season at a time when there were still a lot of afternoon kick offs, and it may just be that teams took time to physically adjust to defending in hotter temperatures.

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    Quote Originally Posted by KentishBarry View Post
    My own theory on this, for the final at least, is that it used to be RL's 'big day out' to the capital. Lot's of neutrals attending just for the fun of it.
    Now we have the MW, the Grand Final with similar (some say bigger) status, plus a handful of club games way beyond the traditional heartlands, including two teams in London for some.
    Yeah, I went to University with a lad who was a big Wakefield fan. He used to go down to Wembley every year on a coach from a social club but once Magic took off, that coach now goes to Newcastle for the weekend.

    Hes 30 and never seen Wakefield in a Final but gets the big day out feel from Magic and is guaranteed to see his side at some point. Its become their Wembley and I think that attitude is probably felt across other clubs too.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dux View Post
    The scores were bonkers that year. I did a geeky statistical comparison between it and the 94-95 season for my Maths A-Level and the total scorelines were way up. It was as if the attacking side of the game felt the benefit of going full time before the defensive side did. It was also the first summer season at a time when there were still a lot of afternoon kick offs, and it may just be that teams took time to physically adjust to defending in hotter temperatures.

    I'd much rather see those kinds of scorelines. It was such an exciting era for RL. But, as usual, we squandered it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Webbo Again View Post
    I'd much rather see those kinds of scorelines. It was such an exciting era for RL. But, as usual, we squandered it.
    I'm not too keen on them myself. I find 'you score, we score' games get old pretty quick. There was some great rugby played that year, but I reckon there was a better balance between attack and defence either side of it - in the early 90s and around the turn of the millenium.

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    We are on Sky Arena (408) again this afternoon form 12am to 6pm,

    I downgraded my Sky Sports subscription but can still view it, I don't know if it is free for anyone or only viewers who normally pay for SkySports

    Maybe of interest

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    Quote Originally Posted by Infamous Grouse View Post
    We are on Sky Arena (408) again this afternoon form 12am to 6pm,

    I downgraded my Sky Sports subscription but can still view it, I don't know if it is free for anyone or only viewers who normally pay for SkySports

    Maybe of interest
    I watched (again; pretty poor from Sky Sports to show the same match this weekend as last, albeit a pretty decent game apart from the result - at least the Superleague YouTube and OurLeague matches are different ones each weekend) the Good Friday match there. I'd ask for a refund if I paid for it

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