Player ratings are a tricky thing to get right. Rating guys on a scale of 1-10 always seemed overly specific to me; after all, what’s the big difference between awarding someone a 5 or a 6? Or a 3 and a 4? I mean, what’s the difference, in practical terms, between a 9 rating and a 10?
My theory is that most performances in a professional rugby match fall on a bell curve in that most of them are pretty average with only a few outliers reaching what we would call “good” or even “very good” so my standard rating for most players is ★★★. This changes up and down based on the context of their position and role. Are they a ball-dominant carrying midfielder? If so, I will rate them on their work in this role rather than, say, demanding they become a ball-handling second-five who can all of a sudden kick for the corners and rating them down as a result.
So that’s why TRK uses the Five Star System to rate individual performances.
Past TRK Rating systems made it hard to get a good form baseline for the season on only three possible scores so, with that in mind, a five-star system is the best way to track form over the course of the season, which will be viewable over the course of the season.
The “Awed Paulie” is an old rating I gave for an excellent performance. These are relatively rare.
Players are rated based on their time on the pitch (no rating if on less than 15 minutes bar extraordinary circumstances) if they were playing notably out of position, their relative experience at the level of the game and on the overall curve of the team performance.
Games are rated on a curve relative to the importance of the game, the stakes involved and the conditions that the game is played in.
Test games are rated highest, closely followed by a knockout game in the Champions Cup or PRO14. Vital ECC pool games and important regular-season PRO14 games rated just below.
As a standard disclaimer, David Wallace is not, and has never been, involved in the creation of these rankings in any way, shape or form.