If you’re anything like me, you’ve spent the last month watching the world cup pretending the entire time that Australia won’t win it. The highest league is in Australia, Australia has pretty much won every world cup (except 2008 where we made the Grand Final) and we once beat Russia 110-4. The highest competition is set in Australia, and the highest honour is a game between two Australian states. As Australians, we dominate rugby league. Yet, we clamour onto the idea of a World Cup. Why?
World Cup’s are meant to be a battle, a competition of proving who is the greatest nation in particular sports. We have them for cricket, rugby union…and of course, football. In these instances, they work. They work because they have surprises, upsets, and you generally don’t know who will win at the start. Sure, you’ll have an idea, but you also expect an upset here and there.
Yet, if someone were to predict that a country other than Australia were to win the rugby league world cup, you’d think they were mental. And now, we sit back and reflect on the World Cup with Australia hoisting the trophy high above their heads.
Australian’s love to win. Yet the world cup doesn’t elicit a sense of pride. When we won, my first reaction was “shocker” and quickly turned the TV to another channel. My sporting love couldn’t get wrapped up in the excitement of the World Cup as at the end of the day, it didn’t feel like a real world cup. It was a kickaround, a training for the national squad.
It’s time to ditch it. There isn’t a reason to have it. It benefits no-one, it doesn’t expand the game. Even the idea of seeing the best of the best go at it is quickly drained when you realise that Australia dominates everyone. Our only real competition is Englan, yet as evident in the Grand Final, Australia dispatched them with ease.
Unlike other World Cups, the RLWC doesn’t help the game: it hinders it.