SPORT is a fickle business.
Clubs will always have a solid core of faithful supporters with season tickets, some will only attend matches when the chances of a win are strong, so a run of poor results can badly effect gate revenues.
After a poor start to the season for Warrington Wolves a draw and a win means everything in terms of improving revenue.
Rugby league is not a rich sport. The club brands are regional, not global as they are for leading football clubs, and the potential for earnings is limited.
Rugby league clubs are small businesses. The announcement over changes to salary caps is therefore significant.
A rise from £1.825m currently to £2.1m by 2020 represents a 15 per cent rise. That’s a lot of tickets and shirts extra to sell.
However, it is still less than one third of the rugby union salary cap. So how can these small businesses manage, if costs are rising?
It has to come from increased revenue.
The sport has to grow its fan base and to do that publicity and participation are key.
More teams, outside of the region at all levels being reported on.
A tough job, but women’s football has worked wonders here.
- Lawrence Bellamy is deputy provost at the University of Chester’s Padgate campus and writes a regular column.