|Rugby League: Farewell to Edinburgh
||[May. 5th, 2010|12:30 pm]
So farewell to Edinburgh....|
Sadly, I don't expect to be back there on rugby league business for quite some time.
Even though the RFL brazenly described a 7000 fall in attendances as a success, the real situation is that Murrayfield has run its course.
Sure, those who went enjoyed it, but even those who seemed to be enjoying it most said, when I asked them, that they would rather be in Cardiff.
The selling point of the Millenium Stadium is its city-centre location. People just like that and the only other example I can think of is Newcastle. It wouldn't surprise me to be in either of those cities next year.
Of course, we'd all be feeling a lot more chipper about Edinburgh if the rugby had been memorable. You can't legislate for these things, but one out-and-out good contest out of seven is a poor return.
Okay, it was good to see Crusaders and Harlequins get well publicised victories, but too many teams just didn't turn up - notably Salford and the Hull clubs.
Perhaps some clubs and some players didn't quite buy into the concept and, if they don't, the paying public can hardly be expected to.
The basic idea of a big weekend away for everyone in mid-season is still a good one. We just haven't got the formula right yet.
Cardiff was fantastic, stadium just across the road from the pub/club/restaurant/hotel area. Great atmosphere from the town centre to the stadium.
Edinburgh, the stadium is a long walk from the city centre, the refreshment choices: "fanzone" of junk food and overpriced beer or the few pubs and many overpriced B&B's down the road.
Now many more people in South Wales have an appreciation of the 13-man game, why not go back there and keep pushing?
As for Newcatle, not a chance, why go there? The whole of the North East is soccer crazy.
Last point. We've been very lucky with the weather. Imagine a weekend of rain in an open stadium.