Future Rugby World Cups could use a wild card system.

Future Rugby World Cups could use a wild card system.

There are calls to capitalize on the 2023 Rugby World Cup’s rightful reputation as the most unpredictable in history by expanding the competition to include more of the top nations in the world.

From a logistical standpoint, increasing each pool by one team would logically result in a longer tournament overall and pool play.

The expansion of the game and fan engagement are more important than logistics, and both would probably be boosted by the addition of more nations, particularly if they were to be significant markets like the United States.

The Rugby World Cup has always provided top talent with more opportunities to play, and less established rugby nations are constantly looking for ways to expand their access to top talent.
Providing these nations with additional growth opportunities is a good idea.

The Aotearoa Rugby Pod proposed a change to the Rugby World Cup format that would allow for the inclusion of the new teams and increase the drama of knockout rugby.
The Aotearoa Rugby Pod argued that it is important to consider both what you do and how you do it.

The wildcard system was described by podcast host Ross Karl and was submitted by a listener.

The winning team would receive a bye following pool play and would automatically advance to the quarterfinals, he said.
“To advance to a quarterfinal, the second and third-placed teams in each pool would play in a wildcard round.

“This would increase the number of meaningful matches and aid in the growth of the teams vying for top-tier rugby.

Without the wildcard system, 16 of the 24 teams would leave after the pool stages, while the wildcard system would allow four more of those teams’ World Cup campaigns to continue.

If used, the proposal could have had interesting repercussions on the composition of the pool this year.
It could have helped balance out any imbalance in the draw.

Former All Black James Parsons praised the suggestion, saying, “I really love what he’s suggested.”.

Therefore, teams like Scotland are probably deserving of a quarterfinal but are probably out.
A team like Australia might get a second chance if Samoa, Argentina, or Japan get a second chance, and whoever wins gets rewarded.
This would create an intriguing story for fans.

In terms of the wildcard (concept), I suppose it’s very American, but I think it’s fantastic.

“It adds another game, lengthening the tournament.
With all due respect, it’s probably better for the sport of rugby, the story, and the excitement than simply adding four more teams that get pumped by 90.

The wildcard system, which is present in each of the national sports leagues in a different configuration, has proven to be very successful for American sports leagues.

The NBA recently implemented a “play-in” tournament where the six-through-ten ranked seeds in each division have a chance to advance to the eight-team playoffs.

In the pivotal one-off games, the system continues to favor the higher-ranked teams with home-court advantage and a quicker path to the playoffs.

It’s unclear how or if the higher-ranked team at a Rugby World Cup would be rewarded for their superior record if home-field advantage didn’t exist – other than by playing a lower seed from a different pool.

The USA, Spain, Canada, and Hong Kong China are the top four national men’s teams that aren’t currently taking part in the Rugby World Cup.


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