New teams, new broadcasters, a new format, a new finance model, new promoters and a new vision for how you sell the game – has the United Rugby Championship’s (URC) partnership with South African rugby, with Roc Nation and with the private equity firm CVC shown the sport a new way to do things, or are they simply out of touch with reality?


We chat to our man in South Africa Craig Ray about this new/false dawn, the face of rugby’s expansion plans, Siya Kolisi, if promoting players ahead of the clubs they’re with is a template rugby can take from the NBA, if marketing guff is a necessary evil and if the new SA franchises will pose much of a threat to Munster and Leinster this weekend.

©INPHO/Morgan Treacy

Ken is worried about Jay Z’s plans for rugby to throw open its doors to everyone, Murph finds himself watching Ryder Cup Tv on a Tuesday and Eoin mourns the demise of the Border Reivers.

©INPHO/Oisin Keniry

Plus there’s NZ V SA (the battle for rugby’s soul) success for the Irish Women’s team on the field, Europe’s war cry, and Liverpool V Ireland.

©INPHO/James Crombie

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