2012 Round Four :: Rabbitohs v Panthers

Discussion in 'Forum Sevens Matches' started by joshie, Jul 21, 2012.

  1. joshie

    joshie Live Update Team

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    [​IMG] -V- [​IMG]

    Match Preview: The ever improving South Sydney are coming off their first successful Willow cup campaign and they want to insert that into the regular season. Geared up for a charge to the finals, the Redfern players need to negate a always strong Penrith, but, key injuries to key positions could see the Panthers fall apart.

    Game Thread:
    * This is a game thread only. Only game posts can be made here - team lists, substitutions, and articles.
    * Any other posts may result in loss of points and is at the discretion of the referee.
    * Only original articles, not used in previous games, will be marked by referees.

    Naming Teams:
    * 5 -V- 5 (+ 3 reserves for home sides; + 2 for away)
    * No 'TBA' or changing players named
    * Captains must stick with original teams named

    Rules: http://f7s.leagueunlimited.com/rules.php
    Official Word Counter: http://f7s.leagueunlimited.com/wordcount.php

    Kick Off: Monday 19th July 2012 (6:00pm AEDT)
    Full Time: Sunday 29th July 2012 (Fulltime is at midnight)
    Referee: Drew-Sta
    Venue: Redfern Oval
    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jul 31, 2012
  2. Big Mick

    Big Mick Referee

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    Penrith team to take on Souths:

    1. Big Mick
    2. Madunit
    3. Leaguenut
    4. Broncoman
    5. Panfas

    RES:
    6. Abpanther
    7. Didgi
     
  3. Monk

    Monk Referee

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    The Rabbits decide to keep it casual and all drive their own cars to the game. Let's hope they all make it on time!

    [​IMG]

    Monk (c)
    Bubbles
    eloquentEEL
    Marshall_magic
    Lambretta

    Bench:
    byrne_rovelli_fan82
    Scott Gourley's Lovechild
    Non_Terminator
     
  4. Bubbles

    Bubbles Juniors

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    Bubbles takes the field for Souths
    __________________________________
    Recapturing the Vibe

    A few years back my husband and I went through a period of extreme financial hardship. We had uprooted our little family to chase a job opportunity in Queensland, spending everything we had (and more) to make it happen, only to discover the job failed to equate to the promises made and we were actually worse off. Sinking further into debt and the despair and desperation that go hand in hand, the rain came and didn’t stop, our kitchen flooded as the deluge breached the window frame and our mobile phones fell victim. Two nights later, having waited until 9 pm for my husband’s pay to hit our bank account before we could buy food for dinner, he disappeared into the night only to return in the blackest, foulest mood I have ever seen him in. Seems the Queensland Police didn’t appreciate the one second pause he made at a stop sign, pulling him over and laying a hefty fine on him for those pesky two seconds for which he didn’t. I will never forget the sight and sounds of my spouse sitting on our deck in the pouring rain, a beer in one hand, his other hand clenched into a fist of fury, railing and cursing everything Queensland. The following morning I awoke with the familiar pit of dread in my stomach, which on this day was quickly replaced by anger and obstinacy. Out of pique and defiance I scribbled a quick message on a post-it and stuck it to the fridge; it simply read “February 24th 2010 is rock bottom – the only way is up.”

    Within half an hour, my phone miraculously started working again and within two days we received a text message with a high-paying opportunity back in our local area of Lake Macquarie. Within a week we were back home in New South Wales and have not looked back since.

    Now, what is the point of all this, I hear you ask? Well, just that I experienced my very own football rock bottom a few weeks back, watching the Roosters lose the unlosable game for the second time this season, each against a club I loathe, in Saints and Rabbits respectively. Talk about the straw that broke the camel’s back! Week after week of watching performances ranging from mediocre to crap and then on to abominable beyond words and until this horror of a game against Souths I was still heading into every game day, hope alive within me even as every bit of logic, intellect and common sense screamed obscenities at me for my foolishness. Two minutes was all it took to run a dagger straight through the heart of hope... again and again, until hope lay in a bloody, pulpy puddle at my feet. I knew, without a doubt, the problems within my club were beyond the power of the post-it.

    Ever since then I have struggled to muster enthusiasm, feel excitement or even feign interest in footy. I, like most diehard fans, watch every game of every weekend, if able. The Friday night after that game I turned the television over at 7.30 pm as I do every week. Two minutes was all it took to realise that I had absolutely zero interest in watching the game; could not have cared less.

    Since then I have watched some games, including my own team’s continuing lacklustre, disheartening performances, but it is with an odd detachment, void of any emotional charge. True, watching Ben Barba’s form stirs some excitement, although it is of pupae proportions. Sure, seeing Greg Inglis deck Dean Young stirred up emotion, albeit a seething hatred for a person of despicable character. Certainly, I remain a footy fan and more acutely and accurately, a Roosters’ fan (as if I have a choice in the matter!), but, just as surely, I have been starved of any football joy for such a long time. Between my team and first love, the Chooks, to my second team, the luckless Blues, it feels like I’ve been stumbling through a desert, lips parched and throat raw, my mind no longer falling into the heart-wrenching trap of believing in mirages. I am bereft of footy joy, without footy hope.

    My final act of faith for this horrible season is that come finals time, my atrophied heart will once again be filled with the palpitating excitement that comes with sudden death, quality football and that I can and will recapture the vibe.

    ______________________________________________
    Word count: 748
     
  5. eloquentEEL

    eloquentEEL First Grade

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    eloquentEEL for the Rabbits
    _____

    Putting the Cult back into Culture

    “A successful team starts with a well managed front office” – Jack Gibson.

    These may not be the exact words used by Big Jack, but it is one of his well documented philosophies. It doesn’t mean that every team with a well managed front office will be successful, but it does mean that the club has to go well in the front office before it can go well on the field. Think of it as a prerequisite. The coach of the century also suggested a couple of other prerequisites: “To win a championship, you've got to have a nucleus of five or six real tough, hard competitors. To win anything, the team's got to think tough and that infiltrates into the individual. You've got to have a tough leader.”
    ________

    KEY MATCHUP

    [​IMG]
    Club: Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
    Front Office: Led by Damian Irvine, the directors turn up for the love of the team. They don’t take home a pay packet.
    Nucleus of real tough, hard competitors: Gallen, Smith, Graham, De Gois, Pomeroy, Gardner
    Tough leader: Paul Gallen, proven tough guy and leader of club and state.


    [​IMG]
    Club: Parramatta Eels
    Front Office: Led by Roy Spagnolo (caught hiding from the media during the Kearney resignation press conference) and Bob Bentley (who splits his time as CEO of the Leagues club and Footy club in the absence of Paul Osbourne). No dedicated football CEO or manager.
    Nucleus of real tough, hard competitors: 0 rows returned.
    Tough leader: Nathan Hindmarsh, puts his body through a hammering every week and can fire up on occasion, but too much of a clean skin.
    ________

    Just a few short years ago, Cronulla was faced with some serious adversity on and off the field. The future looked bleak and they looked like certainties for the scrap heap. Last week’s capitulation to Canberra representing a one-off aberration, the performance of the 2012 Sharks bears little resemblance to the team of 2010. So what happened to turn it all around? Chairman Irvine took a firm grip of the reigns, supported by a passionate and unpretentious board. Flanagan and Mooney were installed as manager and coach. They recruited heavily for 2012 but this didn’t include any marquee players and media reports suggest that they have plenty of room left under the salary cap. The highest profile player brought to the club was Carney and the Sharks were possibly one of the few clubs that could afford to take the gamble because they treat all the players the same. They treat them like humans. The attitude of the board has filtered through and down to the playing group and this was demonstrated by new recruit Andrew Fifita: “Compared to the Tigers, everyone is so tight. We have the same dressing rooms, it's just more of a friendship. We're all just brothers and it's no split groups, no nothing, it's who we are.”


    The Sharks now have a strong culture. No “ifs”, “ands” or “buts”. They play for each other, not for money. They have put the “cult” back into “culture” and it is paying dividends on and off the field. The Sharks will be playing finals football this year, they have sponsorships sorted out and their finances look secured with the State Government recently approving their property development proposal.

    Of course, every rule has an exception. Manly won the title despite their boardroom spats and in the absence of a particularly tough leader. Perhaps it was a hangover of Grant Mayer’s work. Perhaps Hasler was that good a coach and shielded his players. Perhaps they had more real tough, hard competitors than the opposition. Who knows? Who cares? They’ve already looked shaky in several games and begun their downhill slide. The past is in the past and there’s no room for exceptions when looking to the future. If you want to earmark the teams that will be successful over the next few years, have a look at the culture that they’re building. Look at what their front office is doing right now. Look at the core of the playing roster. Do they have that nucleus of really tough competitors? Have a look at their captain. Does he instil a cult-like atmosphere?

    Most importantly, take a look at your own team, on and off the field. If you’re not happy with what you see and your club has an elected board, then become a voting member. Do something about it. Put the cult back into your team’s culture.
    _____

    749 words between the lines

    References:

    http://en.wikiquote.org/wiki/Jack_Gibson

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cronulla-Sutherland_Sharks

    http://www.sharks.com.au/news-display/sharks/55524

    http://www.theaustralian.com.au/spo...lopment-proposal/story-fnca0von-1226416143122

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/sport/nrl/sharks-doing-it-on-the-cheap/story-e6frfgbo-1226344119545

    http://www.smh.com.au/rugby-league/...a-for-pulling-tigers-tail-20120412-1wwn1.html

    http://www.news.com.au/sport/nrl/pa...eys-gig-as-coach/story-fndujljl-1226431223416

    http://www.heraldsun.com.au/sport/n...es-board-meeting/story-e6frfgbo-1226412666495
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2012
  6. broncoman

    broncoman Juniors

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    Broncoman
    Panthers

    Maturing Like a Fine Wine

    Like in many professions in life the career span of a rugby league player is little over a decade long and the earning capability of the players is maximised during a three to four year window for 90% of players. This period is where these players will set themselves up for life after the game, not everyone can be like Jarryd Hayne, Josh Dugan or Brett Stewart and come into the game and be one of the stars from day dot, today I'll look at a few unlikely players who in the next twelve months who I feel can make the step up and be more than the player they have shown so far in their career.

    Peter Wallace
    Strange call I know for a guy who has already played Origin football and is now arguably in the worst form of career, however I compare him to a guy like Brent Sherwin. The Bulldogs half himself never progressed beyond club football but was one of the top number sevens in the game in the mid 2000's. Wallace in 2013 will be in his second year of being the leading player at the Broncos; he has shown enough in the past 18 months that he has the ability to be a dominant player in the NRL. The Darren Lockyer days will be long gone and Wallace should be able to produce enough consistency to go with his so far untapped ability.

    Lewis Brown
    It's hard to believe Brown has been around for five years already. Signed by the Warriors as a hooker he has had the task of being the club's mister fix it man, while he has done an admiral job of shifting between centre, backrow and hooker it has most likely cost him a permanent spot in the New Zealand national team. Playing for the Warriors Brown has been a bit out of sight out of mind, when he moves the Panthers next year and gets his preferred spot in the back row I genuinely believe we will see Brown become one of the premier forwards in the NRL.

    Blake Ferguson
    An absolute genuine match winner on his day and also just as likely to lose you one when it's not. Ferguson has been one of the Raiders best in 2012 and it's no surprise his form has been its best since moving into the centres. As he learns more about playing a bit further in and gets a full off season under his belt in the position he should develop into one of the games premier outside backs. I expect that the more ball he gets in 2013 the more tries he will likely score and I wouldn't be shocked to see him finish with a total of around 20 next year.

    Tim Mannah
    Another of these young guys that's been around longer than you think, with Nathan Hindmarsh retiring Mannah is a front runner of the Eels captaincy and should he get it I believe we will see a new dimension to his game. Another former Origin player who has fallen down the pecking order a little Mannah has time on his side, most forwards don't mature until their mid to late twenties and I wouldn't be surprised to see him back in the NSW side in 2013 as well as a Kangaroo come the end of the year as well.

    Jarrod Mullen
    Surely it's now or never for the next Andrew Johns? Year after year we hear that Mullen has had a huge off season and is now ready to become the player we all thought he was going to be. He's another one who is younger than you think and has time on his side. However he's had enough chances, second year under master coach Wayne Bennett and leading around a side capable of winning a premiership if it's not 2013 it will never happen for him. He's definitely good enough and I feel the only thing that has held him back has been small deficiencies in his game, I think Bennett can get that extra 5% of performance and 5% of consistency out of Mullen and he will something close to the player he should be.

    Most of these guys are player's we've all heard of, seen play and fail. I'm certainly no prophet of rugby league but I trust my judgement enough to say all will produce better football in the coming two years than they have previously.

    750 words
     
  7. Monk

    Monk Referee

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    Sub In: byrne_rovelli_fan82
    Subbed Out: Lambretta
     
  8. byrne_rovelli_fan82

    byrne_rovelli_fan82 First Grade

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    byrne_rovelli_fan82 for the Rabbitohs

    ~~~

    It’s a psychological game.

    The NZ Warriors have once again let a game slip through their fingers, after leading the Sea Eagles last night 18-0, and eventually getting to 22-10 they managed to give the game away and lose 24-22.

    Like them I’ve been scratching my head desperately trying to find what is going on, this has been one of the most unusual displays from the team I’ve seen in a long time.

    Now I’ve done a bit of thinking I have begun to wonder if perhaps they are a team who prefers to chase points rather then set the pace. We saw, earlier in the season even when a few games didn’t go their way, for the most part of it as soon as the other team got in front, its like a switch has been flicked on and they realize it’s time to get a move on.

    Two examples I can think of are from the two finals games’ they played the first vs the West Tigers and the second vs the Storm.

    In the second week of the finals the Tigers got the early jump on the Warriors 12-0, possession, territory and penalties were in massive favor to the Tigers. However after taking a bit of time to settle down they saw an opportunity and grabbed hold of it with a try; and just like that things began to even up with the Warriors getting better and better chances.

    Where the Tigers lost the game was after the ‘cheap’ penalty. As soon as they got the extra points they relaxed, and instead of focusing on the game at hand they relied on the clock countdown to get them to safety and it was when the Warriors sneaked up from behind shocking the world in the final seconds.

    In the following game against the Storm there was a similar mistake by the Melbourne team. They are one of the teams to beat every year; they’ve set the benchmark for a long period of time. The Storm though aren’t invincible they’ll make mistakes too. Melbourne scored the first try of the game early and the way they celebrated that one try was indicative of their attitude. It was as though they had this thinking: ‘Once we get the early points they will feel deflated and we’ll be fine’ Warriors pressed hard and came away with two tries 1 conversion and 1 penalty to lead at half time. In the 2nd half the Storm pressed hard at every chance but failed to land the killer blow and they started to panic causing them to come up with plays they rarely commit when games go their way.

    Let me take you back further when these teams met in the qualifying final back in 2008. From a mental point of view everyone dismissed the Warriors they had no respect because the public perception was; the Storm would be far too good for everyone and would easily account for the Warriors. What happened in the end was the total opposite of the predicted view.

    The Warriors can fix their errors of giving up leads and losing games. It is a matter of taking out the question of getting the lead and sitting back on their heels. Imagine, they are in a game where they are trailing and have huge points to make up, put the seed of doubt into their minds by telling them they don’t have the ability to fight back. It could back fire in a bad way of course; but a little bit of negativity can work wonders in the long-term. No game is ever out of their reach it never has been and even the 2011 grand final wasn’t as they showed the latter stages of it through a mini-fight back with two tries. They need to stop worrying about the other team is doing, whether the other team is coming up with plans of their own. As we all saw with the Sea Eagles last night they never panicked they kept pressing forwards and had the belief to come back. This is, the attitude the Warriors must take into the game no matter what the final outcome is. If they win, if they lose, it doesn’t matter what the score says but what maters is they overcome their fear of being run down and just take no fear, stand up and say:

    ‘We got this game lets grab the bull by the horns and ram it up them!’
    ~~~

    750 words between '~' according to the official word counter.
     
  9. LeagueNut

    LeagueNut First Grade

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    LeagueNut apologises in advance for this one...

    [​IMG]
    LeagueNut (Panthers)

    Fifty shades of grey (NRL abridged version)

    *Due to the nature of this story, names have been “changed” to protect the innocent.


    The shrill blast of the whistle pierced the air, the jarring sound contrasting well against a feeling of final relief. Once again they had been solidly beaten and “Chris” was feeling the pressure – the high-profile recruit with the sizable pay packet wasn’t living up to expectations. As his masculine and sweaty team-mates left the field they were gently squeezed together as they made their way up the players tunnel, their combined writhing mass producing a veritable hotbed of pheromones. Chris’s shorts danced against his skin like a satin sheet in an Arabian desert, gently grazing a gently curving buttockular slope.

    Chris knew “Steve”, his coach, wouldn’t be pleased with his performance – and it didn’t take long before Steve had pulled Chris aside. “Chris, you didn’t own that game,” said Steve, his velvet voice dripping with a mix of disappointment and arousal. “You teased it … threatening to take firm control before softly relinquishing your grasp, releasing the pressure, and being forced to start again.”

    “Come with me for a minute.”

    “Aww coach, do we have to?”

    “Now now Chrissy, the reluctance was cute at first, but it’s lost its charm now. Let’s get on with it, aye? It’s obvious you need another refresher lesson on taking control.”

    As they walked into the next room, Chris immediately looked up at the whips hanging from the wall – limp and flaccid as they always are, yet somehow harbouring the secret memories of a thousand previous visitors. Steve had already put on his mask, and motioned towards Chris to do the same.

    “Chris, you’ve been a bad boy.”

    -=-=-=-=-

    “Sean” had already begun to pack up for the afternoon. He was happy with his performance today and allowed himself a cheerful whistle while he tidied, the sort air gently brushing his taut lips with an enchanting melody that reminded him of a bygone time.

    Suddenly he heard “Billy” coming up the stairs. Sean froze, his heart-rate steadily increasing as beads of sweat began to form on his quivering upper lip.

    “Sean, what the hell was that last call mate? It should have been a try. Now I know it didn’t make a difference to the result but geez mate, we’ve gotta get these things right! Let’s sit down and look at it, OK?”

    Billy flicked on the monitor and immediately brought up a replay. Sean marvelled at the speed of his fingers, they seemed to dance as if by magic across the keys with a gentle touch that belied their firm roundness.

    “See mate, look at this. He clearly gets the ball down. Now I know it was a bit of a dogs breakfast with everyone lying around but let’s look at this freeze-frame here.”

    Sean’s jaw dropped. Did Billy really freeze-frame this unusually erotic snapshot of time? Was this finally the opening he’d been looking for?

    “Look mate, just between that players legs there, you can see his hand is clearly forcing the ball – yes it’s a bit gentle but it’s enough to get the job done, isn’t it?”

    Billy began flicking between half a dozen frames. He may have been focusing on the ball, but Sean saw a whole different angle – he saw hands being brushed against thighs, shorts being ever-so-gently gripped and carelessly pulled aside, and the look of joy and ecstasy as contact was made between the crisp firm skin of the ball against the soft lush surface of the wispy grass below.

    Sean suddenly realised what he’d seen. “Aww yeah, I guess it was a try then.”

    “Geez mate, sort it out. I don’t want to have to put you on the rack again.”

    “Maybe … maybe it’d be for the best Billy, you know, maybe it’d help me learn?”

    The awkward pause seemed to last forever – Sean slowly lifted his eyes from Billy’s belt buckle and started to look up, pausing to drink in every visual pleasure he could on the way. He stopped for a second to admire the curvaceous nature of Billy’s lips before gently letting himself fall into Billy’s dreamy gaze.

    Billy had a wicked smile starting to curl at the corners of his mouth. His eyes had already answered the question by now, and Sean’s heart rate soared to dangerous levels.

    “Billy – can you bring your whistle this time?”

    “Just you try and stop me.”

    -=-=-=-=-

    740 sensuous words
     
  10. Big Mick

    Big Mick Referee

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    Big Mick runs out onto the field for the Panthers

    [​IMG]

    Played Strong, Done Fine

    In May 2008, the Rugby League fraternity suffered one of its greatest losses in its 100 history. Prior to what was meant to be a celebration of rugby league between rivals Australia and New Zealand the world was informed that Super coach Jack Gibson had lost his long battle with illness. Jack Gibson was a man of great influence on all whom had the privilege to engage with him. He is the reason the game exists in the way it does today.

    As a player Jack was tough and uncompromising. As a coach he was innovative and professional. But his greatest victory was as a man who devoted his love to his family and his life to charity.

    Soon after his death, former Parramatta legend Peter Sterling, who had played under Jack in Parramatta’s three premierships, was clearly emotional at the loss of a friend and mentor

    "He loved his players, he cared about his players. And I think the great thing about being coached by Jack Gibson is he was more concerned about you off the field than he ever was on.

    "He made wonderful footballers, but he also made wonderful people and I thank Jack Gibson eternally for being a part of my life and I know I speak on behalf of every rugby league player and every rugby league supporter who was lucky enough to see Jack in action."

    His love and devotion to his players was never more evident than after the 1982 Grand Final when his players voted him Man of the Match. Testimonies such as Sterling’s above started flooding in from around the world with friends, families and ex-players all devastated and sharing their love for Jack. One of the greatest second rowers the game has seen in Peter Wynn attributed so much to Gibson

    "I owe him so much of what I have achieved in life and feel privileged to be his friend, as much as having been a player under him. I don't know anyone who has had such widespread respect," Wynn said.

    Jack Gibson was a coach who took the art of coaching from a hobby for those ex-players who need a job to what it is known as today. His influence on the game is beyond question. He had a thirst for innovation introducing new coaching and training methods into a sport that was played on a semi-professional basis. He was the first to bring in the use of video technology, the art of science and nutrition as well as specific and specialised weight’s training. His philosophy of coaching was preparation, confidence and hard work.

    As Wayne Bennett stated

    "He's the most influential coach the game has ever had. He changed the face of our game in how coaches were perceived and how the game was played, and approached.

    "That's his greatest legacy; he brought us out of the dark ages in to a credible place in sport.”

    Jack Gibson’s coaching record of five grand final victories earned him the selection of Coach of the Century at the Centenary Team announcement only a number of days prior to his death. No greater honour could have been awarded and no greater man deserved it. Gibson’s influence as a coach stemmed to the modern day with great coaches of today in Bob Fulton and Wayne Bennett attributed their success to the great man.

    Gibson was also known, and most famous for, his one-liners he delivered to the media, fans and players. While most of his inspirational quotes were directly out of a Vince Lombardi promotional video, Gibson still had some great ones of his own, such as “waiting for Cronulla to win a premiership is like leaving the porch light on for Harold Holt”, Gibson definitely wasn’t wrong, even to this day.

    While this piece has only scratched the surface of the great man’s influence, it is safe to say that no man could have been greater, and no man could have done better. We all owe a great debt to Jack Gibson for giving us the game we know and love today. He deserves the right to be remembered and celebrated as the greatest influence on our game since Dally Messenger.

    In an age where the right coach is so vital, Jack Gibson was a trailblazer who directly influenced some of the great coaches of today. The rugby league world suffered a great loss in 2008, but will continue to grow due to Gibson’s influence.

    748 words (owc)

    Ref:
    * Andrews, Malcolm (2006) The ABC of Rugby League Austn Broadcasting Corpn, Sydney
    * Jack Gibson (with Ian Heads) The Last Word ABC Books
    * Neil Cadigan, Tribute Article, Sydney Daily Telegraph 10 May 2008
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2012
  11. Panfas

    Panfas Juniors

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    Panfas runs onto the field for the Mighty Panthers

    -----

    Why Penrith will win

    Speed, power and football smarts, these are some of the things that the Panthers have lacked over the last few years. In comes a new coach, and a new attitude, a new desire. Well that was the plan when new General Manager Phil Gould recruited Ivan Cleary late last year. While it is fair to say that things have not quite gone to plan this year there is a lot of movement behind the scenes.

    I have spoken to quite a few Panther fans over the last few weeks and they all say the same thing, ‘Why release Luke Lewis?’ Well the answer is simple; do you want an employee working for your company that does not want to be there? The real question is why does Luke not want to be there? That is a hard one. From a fans perspective, it appears that Luke has simply had enough of the changing. He clearly wants to play with his teammates, but he may not want to play for his new management. This situation happens quite often, a new coach and in comes the new players and out goes the old players. To an extent, I agree with the releasing of Luke Lewis. I agree that it is best for player and club that he leaves on good terms. Luke has said that he wants to play in a winning team, and to win the premiership in the next few years. After signing a 4 year deal with the Cronulla Sharks, it appears that he has high hopes of Cronulla winning the premiership in that time. I have huge doubts they can achieve that.

    Penrith are on the way up, a recruitment drive for the 2013 season is well under way. Players including Sika Manu, Lewis Brown, Dean Whare, James Segeyaro and Wes Naiqama have signed on, while Luke Lewis and Michael Gordon are the notable exitee’s. Penrith have also found their new 5/8 in Lachlan Coote. He has started at 5/8 in the last 2 games resulting in consecutive wins, and 3 tries. Lachlan is a great support player, but with him moving up into the line he has to now create the plays. A play that sticks in my mind is Lachlan attacking the Sydney Roosters line at the 10 metre mark. Running to the outside into the line, an inside ball to new fullback Josh Mansour running at full pace. Unfortunately this was unsuccessful but it shows that he has knowledge of the game, and knows what to do and when.

    The culture that Ivan Cleary is trying to implement with the players has been a hard fought effort, but the signs are there that things are on the improvement. The culture of hard work, discipline and success – something that the Panthers have lacked for the last 10 years. This culture is evident when you look at his time with the New Zealand Warriors. He took over as head coach in 2006 and coached for 6 years. In those 6 years they made the finals 4 times, including the miraculous defeat of Melbourne, in Melbourne from 8th place. For all and sundry the Warriors should have lost that game, but Ivan had belief in the team, the team had belief in Ivan. The 2011 season would be considered one of the team’s most successful seasons ever. They finished 6th in the regular season and made it all the way to the grand final. A red hot Manly beat them on this occasion.

    While it would have been great to keep someone like Luke Lewis it is not the end of the world, it is far from it. Phil Gould’s idea of a successful Penrith is a team with a high percentage of players from the Penrith area. This was a strong point in both the 1991 and 2003 grand finals, however the Penrith team this year the majority of players are from outside the club. Yes you always need players recruited externally; the team should not be majority external.

    So the question remains, “Why will Penrith win?” It is this youth exuberance that will be the catalyst. Youth & experience = success. This on top of a new culture of hard work and discipline.

    -----

    711 words (owc) between the lines
     
  12. Monk

    Monk Referee

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    Monk rolls into the parking lot. Dubstep wubbing through the windows of his rusty burn out automobile. But check out the rims ay bro!

    ++++++++++++++++++++

    Be careful what you wish for.

    16/07/2012: It was the beginning of the end, it was laughable really. I just sat there, head buried in my arms, it defied belief. I kept replaying the radio broadcast over and over in my head, how could they just sit there and let two tries in? They truly just stole defeat from the clutches of victory. I fell back onto my bed and just lay there. Opening my eyes to look at the ceiling for a split second before closing them again, to stare into blackness and wonder what I did wrong to have God punish me like this. It’s hard to watch your team get put to the sword every week, but it’s even harder to watch a team you hate have a successful year. It was unprecedented. Letting Souths steal a Top 4 position was unforgivable. So I did something I hadn’t done since my younger years; I knelt over my bed and prayed to God.

    “God, I know about 8 years ago I used to come to you regularly and we used to have friendly chats and all, but something is wrong with the world. People in Redfern have hope for the first time in a billion years, why is this happening? What have I done to deserve this? Actually – don’t answer that. Okay God, here it is. If you – using your almighty powers (Lightning bolts? I don’t know...) stop Souths from winning the Premiership; they can make the finals or whatever, just... I couldn’t handle it if they won. Anyone but them, even those stinking cheats the Bullscum. If you make it so Souths don’t win the Premiership, then it’s cool if the Roosters come last, I know I used to pray for you to let the Roosters win every week, but not letting Souths win in more important right now, so yeah. Love you. Say Hi to Nanna for me.”

    19/07/2012: While sitting in a Maths Lecture, I scrolled through the daily musings on facebook to see what everyone had to say. Dancing there, on the screen of my phone were the words which indicated that my prayer was coming true (I know prayers aren’t like wishes, but still!). Rumours were circulating that Kearney (Eels coach – once assumed to be their saviour) was going to resign (Sacked? That’s a story for a different time) the following day. This would surely spark the revival of the Eels. Looks like Roosters are heading for Spoonsville, Population 17.

    21/07/2012: It was all over the news, living in the Illawarra (No need to feel sorry for me), every truckie, news bulletin and Newsagency store owner felt it was there right to tell you that Inglis’ shot on Dean Young was going to put him out for the season. Souths were finished, even though they got the win, this would surely derail there season, wouldn’t it? In other news Eels had put in the performance of a lifetime and beaten the unbeatable Storm (Who were still unbeatable, despite having lost three games in a row before this one).

    22/07/2012: I’m not even surprised, we always play like arse. At this point in the season, I’ve found it’s easier just to laugh about it. No point worrying about it now. With this win, Panthers are so much closer to overtaking us on the table. Giving us the spoon and assuring that Souths won’t win the Premiership. It’s a good feeling really, knowing that Souths will have another year without a Premiership, and imagine if the Sharks won it? Wouldn’t the Bunnies look silly then!

    29/07/2012: Souths absolutely towelled the Tigers. Should I be worried? Maybe I should start praying to other Gods. Just to make sure.

    11/08/2012: It’s like staring into the future. On this date the Roosters get whipped by the Eels in what is a battle for the ever wondrous Wooden Spoon. It’s not even a curse anymore, last time the Chooks won it (2009) they made the Grand Final the following year. Roosters 2013! Get on board everyone!

    I hope God was listening to my prayer. The thought of a competition where the Roosters lose and Souths come first... Ugh I think I’m going to be sick.

    ++++++++++++++++++++

    A smooth 718 words between the +'s
     
  13. Marshall_magic

    Marshall_magic Coach

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    Marshall Magic on for Souffs.

    ------------

    [FONT=&quot]STICKY SITUATION[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]With Parramatta recently pulling off what is apparently the biggest signing for the club since Jack Gibson, signing NSW coach Ricky Stuart, everyone has their opinions on how things will work out for the club. Crystal balls everywhere have been working overdrive, some say it will be an absolute disaster and the club will plummet further into mediocrity, some say the club is a basket case and not even Hasler or Bennett could help them. There are others who say he is the saviour the Eels need and they will thrive under Sticky. I looked into my own crystal ball which is 100% correct 60% of the time, and here are the results.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]July 2012: After signing on with the Eels, Ricky claims he can’t wait to work with Chris Sandow, and says several members of the NSW team will be on his radar to bring to the club. He names James Tamou and Greg Bird as the two he really wants to bring.[/FONT]
    [FONT=&quot]
    September 2012: Parramatta collects the wooden spoon for season 2012. As of now, no Origin players have been brought to the club. Ricky states that he is negotiating with several clubs to release certain players. Ricky stands aside as NSW coach.
    [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]November 2012: After an off field misdemeanour, Greg Bird is released by the Titans. He signs on with Parramatta for 3 seasons. Ricky claims that Bird will be a great replacement for Nathan Hindmarsh. [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]March 2013: After a big offseason Ricky states he has high hopes for the club in the upcoming season. Round 1 team announcement sees Hayne shifted to 5/8 to partner Sandow in the halves. Bird is named at lock. Parramatta lose their season opener.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]May 2013: Parramatta struggle for the first 2 months of the season, winning 2 from 8. After continued form struggles Hayne misses out on NSW selection. After also seeing the origin axe, an unhappy Mitchell Pearce leaves the Roosters to join the Eels mid season. Much excitement is had by Eels fans as it is hinted that this will see Hayne move back to fullback. For their upcoming clash however, Pearce and Hayne are named in the halves with Sandow shifted to fullback.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]June 2013: After continued poor performances, Sandow is dropped to NSW Cup and never plays first grade again, Hayne is moved to the centres and Bird is shifted to 5/8. Ricky believes Bird will carry his great form from lock into the halves.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]July 2013: NSW win the state of origin series, with Greg Bird playing a starring role. However he struggles to adapt to playing in the halves at club level. Hayne sees a slight increase in form, but not enough to save the Eels’ season. They appear destined for a bottom 4 finish.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]August 2013: Ricky states there will be changes made at the club if performances do not lift. He contacts old mentor Gus Gould to enquire about signing Michael Jennings. Gus is intrigued. Ricky also wants Tim Grant causing Gus to lose it, Jennings is not released. To make matters worse, Hayne, sick of being played out of position, demands a release. He signs on with the Panthers. Ricky says big names will be brought in.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]October 2013: The Eels avoid the spoon on for and against. Ricky claims it is an improvement on the previous year. Tim Mannah filthy on the direction of the club, demands to be released, he follows Hayne to the Panthers. Ricky after 2 months of hunting players, brings in Ben Creagh from the Dragons and Beau Scott from the Knights.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]March 2014: Round 1 team is announced, notable selections include Pearce and Bird in the halves together, centre pairing is Scott and Tonga. Creagh picked in the front row with Moimoi. The club comes up against Penrith and is thrashed. Hayne at fullback is the star for Penrith. [/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]June 2014: After NSW win game 2, they take an unassailable 2-0 lead in the series. Apart from Bird no Eel is selected. Mannah and Hayne both star. Parramatta take just 3 wins from their first 14 games. Bird backing up from origin 2 does an ACL and is out for the season.[/FONT]

    [FONT=&quot]September 2014: Parramatta finish last on the ladder winning just 4 games for their second wooden spoon in three seasons. Hayne collects his second Dally M medal. Penrith win their third premiership as a club with Mannah taking home the Clive Churchill Medal. Ricky's contract is terminated.[/FONT]


    ------------------------

    748 words between the lines.
     
    Last edited: Jul 29, 2012
  14. madunit

    madunit Super Moderator Staff Member

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    madunit for the Panthers

    I Won

    Hello everyone and welcome to this museum showcasing the greats of Rugby League. My name is Tom and I will be your guide today.

    Today I shall take you on a tour of the professional career and the life of the great Australian Rugby League player, Harry Robbins, whom I sure you have all heard of.

    So, are we foregathered?

    Very well, I will begin.

    Robbins.

    Harold Arthur John Robbins.

    Robbins is a Rugby League player with whom I have always felt a special bond. Ever since our early schooling days, aged just eight, when we both took an interest in the game Rugby League. He, a burly centre who looked as big as the children three years his senior, and me, a human who resembled an anorexic pencil with the athletic ability of an old cabbage.

    In those young days, Robbins was a popular figure, even at such a young age, often informing those with lesser ability, myself included, just how superior he was, physically and verbally.

    Alas, we both persisted with the great game for a many number of years. Finally, aged just seventeen, I won a ‘best on field’ award. At the same age, Robbins was on his way to Sydney, about set to make his name in the toughest competition in the country. Robbins was almost lost to the world or Rugby League when his father demanded he join the family business, just as my father, despite my insistence demanded I take a job in a post office.

    Robbins defied his father.

    And so it was that by the age of twenty three he had played one hundred first grade games for his club, including his first appearance for his state and was in strong contention towards earning his first test jumper, whereas I at the age of twenty three had played no Rugby League at all and was working in a post office.

    For both Robbins and myself our twenty seventh year was a decisive one. For him it was the year that he became captain of the Kangaroos thus earning him the glory of being the youngest ever Test captain at the time. For me it was the year that my post office was unexpectedly burnt to the ground in a brazen attack by disgruntled customers. The post office was rebuilt however many colleagues positions were made redundant.

    But not mine.

    I continued working in a post office.

    In his thirties, Robbins was beginning to be considered as the most prominent Australian Rugby League player of his era. In my thirties, I was beginning to be recognised by some of the more regular customers at the post office.

    In this photograph, the famous test match at Leeds known as the ‘Zulu War’, the beautiful vignette in the group on the left is thought to be Robbins’ mistress of the time, Jane Harrison, one of a string of mistresses Robbins enjoyed over the course of his life.

    I am married to Dawn. She is not one of a string of wives I have enjoyed; she is the wife I have … had.

    At the age of forty seven, Robbins had long since retired as a player and coach as well as failing to contribute any commentary on the great game for the past six years. In this at least we were precisely similar.

    Walking home from a pub late one night in Surrey Hills, it began to rain heavily. In his dishevelled and inebriated state, stumbled into a lamp post, passed out and lay in the unrelenting downpour. His life of heavy drinking and smoking coupled with the night in the rain saw Robbins quickly suffer from pneumonia. Just two weeks prior to his forty eighth birthday, he died.

    And now the tables begin to turn.

    At the age of forty eight, I was working in a post office. Robbins was buried!

    At fifty eight I was working in a post office. Robbins was a skeleton!

    Today I am sixty five years old, I have severe arthritis in my hip, I have retired from the post office and I do volunteer work every second weekend in this sports museum telling people about all of Robbins magnificent career feats as a rugby league player.

    But I am at least still here.

    When Robbins was my age the bugger wasn’t even breathing.

    So in the long run I’d like to think …

    I won!

    737 words, including title.
     
  15. joshie

    joshie Live Update Team

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    full time
     
  16. Monk

    Monk Referee

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    First the Willow Cup Final and now this cracker of a game. I think we have found our mortal F7's enemies!

    It's on Panthers! I'm so happy it's a 5v5, good luck everyone!
     
  17. Drew-Sta

    Drew-Sta Moderator Staff Member

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    I've been commissioned to referee this. Am proceeding to mark them now, so hope it will be finished by tonight.
     
  18. Big Mick

    Big Mick Referee

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    Thanks Drew-Sta much appreciated.

    To Souths, congrats on getting the 5 in. Great to see a 5 v 5 game!
     
  19. Monk

    Monk Referee

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    Cheers Drew-sta, looking forward to it :)
     
  20. Drew-Sta

    Drew-Sta Moderator Staff Member

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    Marks are as follows:

    Panthers

    Broncoman - 72
    Interesting look at the current crop of 'just-nearly-but-not-quite-superstars'. Didn't jump out of me and a number of grammar errors cost you points.

    LeagueNut - 96
    Quite simply, one of the best reads I've had in yonks. Clever, witty, toys well with current culture and rugby league issues; well done! Superb effort, despite the creepy images it gave me. You know what I mean!

    Big Mick - 82
    Solid effort on one of rugby leagues great men. Interesting bits of information melded together to craft a good article.

    Panfas - 83
    An oft-witty article with an interesting look at the success of the Panthers. Nuggets of truth were contained and some thought put in to the article. I agreed with the sentiment regarding Lewis also.

    madunit - 81
    I sense I didn't completely connect with the story itself and lacked the full understanding as to its purpose. I did see the irony of what you were saying, and was amused by the clever humour. Solid article all round though.

    Souths

    Bubbles - 86
    I resonated with this article; it's something I have felt particularly in Tonga and also at other times with my own team when they fail. I can't offer any advice, but liked your honesty and loved the rawness.

    eloquentEEL - 86
    Really well constructed article. Nicely written, made a solid point and identified what is essentially the basis for success whilst recognising the exceptions to rules. I agree wholeheartedly, although I think Cronulla are having some late season struggles; why I don't know, but it is certain their earlier success is because of what you identified.

    byrne_rovelli_fan82 - 76
    An interesting look at the Warriors fortunes in light of their loss to Manly. A difficult malaise to diagnose but a firm effort given. Grammar was a main reason for the lower mark in an otherwise insightful article.

    Monk - 84
    Good source for understanding why 'rivalry round' is so important to the game. The invoking of giant thunderbolts to stop Inglis dead in his tracks would be a most amusing thing to observe!

    Marshall Magic - 82
    Entertaining look at Sticky Ricky's fortunes at Parramatta. Enjoyable article and my type of humour.

    Souths - 414
    Panthers - 414
    Result - Draw

    POTM - LeagueNut

    Backpackers:

    3 - LeagueNut
    2 - Bubbles / eloquentEEL
    1 - Monk
     

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