To introduce sevens rugby, or not introduce sevens rugby?
Surely the answer now, after Central West took out the NSW Country Championship crown, is to roll out a ticket-tape parade and welcome the format with open arms.
Make it happen.
Women’s rugby, more to the point what type of structure the central west competition should take on, has been a long debate in the area.
For a long time, 15-a-side has been preferred.
But where necessary to ensure teams take the field the Central West Rugby Union (CWRU) has allowed clubs to play 10s, which has worked.
But now, without a shadow of a doubt, surely the CWRU has to look at introducing a sevens competition for its Blowes Clothing Cup sides.
The success of the Australian women’s side at Rio can’t be ignored. Those girls shone a light brighter than anyone can imagine on the game after winning Olympic gold.
Considering the state of Australian rugby at present, the rugby sevens girls are the best thing to happen to the sport in a long time.
Now, after Amanda Ferguson’s outfit claimed a 19-10 win in the final over Hunter, the success of the Central West girls has to be embraced too.
It’d be hard to run a weekly, 18-round regular season competition that follows the same format as the men’s Blowes Clothing Cup.
Let’s face it, making a rugby sevens side travel from Bathurst to Dubbo to play a 14-minute game of rugby isn’t really time well spent.
So, start the season in April, run a gala day once a month and then bring the competition’s finals into line with the top five format run in the CWRU’s top tier.
Rugby sevens can’t be ignored. It’s that simple.
Implementing a competition for 2018 has to be on the agenda for the CWRU, running a gala day once a month seems simple – you might even jag a few of the league tag girls across from rugby league.
Lask week, I think we were saying the Group 10 competition was blown wide open after Orange Hawks took down defending premiers Mudgee.
Scrap that. The two blues have a long way to go yet.
Willie Heta’s outfit was taught a lesson by a serious premiership contender, Bathurst Panthers winning 72-12 at Pride Park.
Panthers’ only loss of the season has been against Orange CYMS – the green and golds’ one of two undefeated sides after the opening month of the 2017 season. Oberon is the other.
Realistically, you can reduce the race to three; Panthers, Oberon, CYMS.