Elstone to leave SL

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jaws1
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Elstone to leave SL

Post by jaws1 » Tue Feb 09, 2021 6:37 pm

https://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/rugby-league/55985119

Robert Elstone is set to stand down as executive chairman of Super League after tendering his resignation.

His decision to step down comes just 44 days before the start of the new 2021 season, and two and a half years after his appointment in June 2018.

Elstone, 57, came back to rugby league after 13 years as chief executive at Premier League side Everton.

Super League's board have said they will discuss the decision before making comment.

Having worked at the game's governing body the Rugby Football League, aligned to his work as a chartered accountant at Deloitte and his experience running a top-flight elite football club, Elstone was handed the reins at Super League to drive a new era.

As part of his remit, Elstone was tasked with pushing Super League away from the RFL to a more autonomous position, attracting new investment and negotiating television rights - with the current Sky deal due to expire in 2021.

Clubs rejected a private equity offer which was worth a reported £60m from Novalpina Capital, while the new TV deal is also expected to come with a reduction in income.

Last year's season was heavily affected by Covid-19, halting the campaign in March and putting additional financial pressure on the league's clubs, which was aided by the RFL's securing of government loan support.

Newcomers Toronto Wolfpack had to withdraw from the competition in July citing financial problems as they were unable to draw on the government support, central funding or income from home fixtures in order to help their finances, as per the agreement of them joining the competition.

The knock-on effect of the latter was the vote against the Wolfpack returning, which Elstone had said "would not be right for the development of the competition", and the decision by an independent panel to admit Leigh Centurions in their place for 2021.

fozzieskem
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by fozzieskem » Tue Feb 09, 2021 7:41 pm

Was he any worse than Big Nige?

Truth is our sport is governed by self interest and not much more whole I don’t think Elstone was the right man is debatable of course but let’s be fair is there anyone better ?

widdenoldboy
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by widdenoldboy » Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:12 pm

I hadn't heard about this "Clubs rejected a private equity offer which was worth a reported £60m from Novalpina Capital, " ?

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EagleEyePie
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by EagleEyePie » Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:28 pm

I'm not sure Elstone was the right man but then I'm not sure anyone else could have done much in the circumstances. The owners created the role of SL chairman and then gave themselves the same amount of power. What could have been a role for a leader who represented all of Super League just became an additional voice among the other 12. The owners then proceeded to continue arguing amongst themselves, voted against Elstone on certain issues, some even tabled a vote of no confidence. While he didn't seem to be the forward thinking person Super League needed it's also true that anyone else would have come up agains the same issues. Unless the role of chairman is a single unified voice representing the whole of Super League it's hard to see what the point is.

Now when Elstone leaves we're right back to square one. If Super League clubs just go cap in hand back to the RFL and unify as things were before the split we're just going back to the bad old days of the RFL old boys club will little hope of progressing the game. What it would solve is the embarrassing power structure the game currently has, but at what cost? At the same time Super League can't really justify the expense of another chairman. Plus who would be foolish to take on that role having seen how toothless the position really is.

If Super League and the RFL unify but the Super League clubs have greater influence than before (which seems a likely scenario) then the structure of power is still an issue. There's still a conflict of interest and it would seem like the onus would be on the owners to increase the commercial value of Super League and that's not an ideal situation. It also seems like that would just intensify the squabbles and disputes that seem to be bubbling under the surface.

The fact that Elstone seems to be offering his resignation before a new TV deal has been agreed also seems worrying. It's potentially another destabilising event when the sport is already on shaky ground.

nathan_rugby
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by nathan_rugby » Tue Feb 09, 2021 9:07 pm

EagleEyePie wrote:
Tue Feb 09, 2021 8:28 pm
I'm not sure Elstone was the right man but then I'm not sure anyone else could have done much in the circumstances. The owners created the role of SL chairman and then gave themselves the same amount of power. What could have been a role for a leader who represented all of Super League just became an additional voice among the other 12. The owners then proceeded to continue arguing amongst themselves, voted against Elstone on certain issues, some even tabled a vote of no confidence. While he didn't seem to be the forward thinking person Super League needed it's also true that anyone else would have come up agains the same issues. Unless the role of chairman is a single unified voice representing the whole of Super League it's hard to see what the point is.

Now when Elstone leaves we're right back to square one. If Super League clubs just go cap in hand back to the RFL and unify as things were before the split we're just going back to the bad old days of the RFL old boys club will little hope of progressing the game. What it would solve is the embarrassing power structure the game currently has, but at what cost? At the same time Super League can't really justify the expense of another chairman. Plus who would be foolish to take on that role having seen how toothless the position really is.

If Super League and the RFL unify but the Super League clubs have greater influence than before (which seems a likely scenario) then the structure of power is still an issue. There's still a conflict of interest and it would seem like the onus would be on the owners to increase the commercial value of Super League and that's not an ideal situation. It also seems like that would just intensify the squabbles and disputes that seem to be bubbling under the surface.

The fact that Elstone seems to be offering his resignation before a new TV deal has been agreed also seems worrying. It's potentially another destabilising event when the sport is already on shaky ground.
Good post, agree with your points abs concerns.

Very worrying.
Bomhead - "Lockers to prop."

DaveO
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by DaveO » Tue Feb 09, 2021 10:13 pm

I think EagleEye sums it up pretty well. The position was toothless and it’s no wonder he gave up.

You can bet your house Hethrington will be angling for getting back with the RFL but they are a spectacularly useless organisation.

They want to treat a sport that to survive as a top sport can support a maximum of 12 full time clubs as if it’s got around 60 “professional” clubs.

Nezza Faz
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by Nezza Faz » Tue Feb 09, 2021 11:22 pm

And if the game is to progress, and not stand still or go backwards, we have to get rid of the "tail wagging the dog" thinking. That has been proved not to work over heaven knows how many years/decades.
I think the Salary Cap is another project that needs revisiting, it reduces the top level to the bottom pile, takes out any incentive to invest in the future and encourages the drain to the NRL (who's next, Gildart ?).
Need to think very, very carefully the direction we now head.

The booze hound
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by The booze hound » Wed Feb 10, 2021 6:33 am

Rugby League needs more participants. Grassroots is where it all grows from. There are more people in Poland participating in Rugby Union than the the whole of Europe have participating in Rugby League.

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Wigan_forever1985
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by Wigan_forever1985 » Wed Feb 10, 2021 11:09 am

The problem ive always seen is it suits the owners of the clubs for the sport to remain poor. No one liked it when the good Dr came along and started wanting to plough money in the sport because the bigger clubs like Wigan/Leeds/Stains can survive from youngsters and already have established fan bases, the smaller clubs cant afford to complete if money does come in and its not with them.
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure

nathan_rugby
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Re: Elstone to leave SL

Post by nathan_rugby » Wed Feb 10, 2021 12:29 pm

Wigan_forever1985 wrote:
Wed Feb 10, 2021 11:09 am
The problem ive always seen is it suits the owners of the clubs for the sport to remain poor. No one liked it when the good Dr came along and started wanting to plough money in the sport because the bigger clubs like Wigan/Leeds/Stains can survive from youngsters and already have established fan bases, the smaller clubs cant afford to complete if money does come in and its not with them.
Exactly. Salary cap was brought in to even the playing field which it did to some extent. But when you look at who has won the grand final it hasn’t achieved what it set out.

Teams like Wakefield and Cas would never vote to remove it. Why would they?
Bomhead - "Lockers to prop."

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