It’s Magic Round, baby! I am very excited to be attending seven out of the eight games (please just make it eight games in three days next year, preferably aligning with the Labour Day weekend) and we found out this week on NRL.com that Magic Round is staying in Queensland for at least the next two years. Despite protestations for the kind of people who have to be quoted in AlTeRnAtiNg CaPs, this is a good thing.
The idea is for the NRL to sell the event to the highest bidder moving forward, as a diverse revenue stream, but they need to establish the concept in Australia first. Holding it in Brisbane does this because it is an established rugby league market and placates the Queensland government somewhat for not getting the hosting rights to the NRL grand final at any point before the end of time. Attendances are not that important to the overall success of the event because the state government is paying the NRL and the NRL in turn pays the teams for giving up their home games. Nonetheless, 125,000 people are expected, which is roughly 20% more than the eight “host” clubs would normally draw in aggregate.
It’s not being held in Sydney for a couple of obvious reasons:
- Why would the Queensland government pay to host an event in Sydney?
- Sydney already gets around 100+ NRL games and these are poorly attended compared to non-Sydney matches.
- Seriously, shut the fuck up. Sometimes things happen outside of Sydney.
On to the tipping, given that this weekend’s games are being played at one venue, I’ve taken the unprecedented step of manually removing home ground advantage from the tipping systems (even for the Broncos, who technically have an away fixture). The net result is that the team on the left would normally be handed an advantage of 40 to 60 Elo rating points, which translates to about 4% winning percentage for Archimedes and about 6% for Eratosthenes. I made some smaller modifications for Poseidon but did not completely remove the home ground advantage because it would have been too difficult to do for a one-off. xPPG remains unaffected.
Here are the tips for this weekend’s action:
National Rugby League
Intrust Super Cup
No Queensland Cup action this weekend with a break taking place for a representative weekend. The Queensland Residents (selected under the old, pre-Origin rules for interstate matches) will take on New South Wales at Redcliffe’s Dolphin Stadium at 1PM on Sunday.
If you’re not going to Magic Round, maybe give this some thought.