Round 7 (2008) Warriors v Rabbitohs

Discussion in 'Forum Sevens Matches' started by Willow, Jun 22, 2008.

  1. Willow

    Willow Administrator

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    Forum 7s - Round 7 2008
    NEW ZEALAND WARRIORS v SOUTH SYDNEY RABBITOHS

    [​IMG]-v-[​IMG]

    Game Thread:
    * Please note - This is a game thread only, therefore only game posts can be made here (Teams, 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:
    * 5v5 (+ 2 reserves for visiting team, 3 reserves for home team)
    * No 'TBA' or changing players named
    * Captains must stick with original teams named​

    ALL THE RULES & REGULATIONS: http://f7s.leagueunlimited.com/rules.php

    FULL TIME: Thursday 3July 2008 at 9pm (Syd time)

    REFEREE: Steel Dragon
    Venue: Mt Smart Stadium​

    **The Referee Blows Game On!**
    [​IMG]

     
    Last edited: Jul 1, 2008
  2. Jesbass

    Jesbass First Grade

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    [​IMG]

    Jesbass runs onto the field and throws down the gauntlet, not realising that the family heirloom is made of clay...or, rather, was made of clay...

    Run On Team:
    2. sportsthought
    3. JonB

    7. Jesbass (c)
    9. Misanthrope
    11. rayroxon

    Bench:
    6. byrne_rovelli_fan82
    An overweight trainer :crazy:
    A plush cushion for the captain... :lol:

    (Please note that those last two subs aren't actual players... ;-))
     
  3. Jesbass

    Jesbass First Grade

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    For no apparent reason, Jesbass lets out a primal scream as he takes to the field. As a result of his self-inflicted distraction, he misses the kick off, and nonchalantly stretches as he is thrown a hospital pass with a team of South Sydney's finest bearing down on him...

    ***

    Money Bill Williams? (741 words including title between the stars)

    On June 11th 2008, after a late night meeting with Bulldogs club bosses, Sonny Bill Williams declared that he would honour his contract with the organisation with which he won an NRL Premiership in his debut season. This brought to an end an embarrassingly drawn out negotiation period that got saturated through the media, with fans labelling Williams “egocentric”, “disloyal”, and “a spoilt brat”.

    But what was it that caused such unrest for the Belmore club’s marquee player just one year into a five year contract, which was reportedly worth A$2 million?

    The media have said their piece, as have the fans, but a source close to the situation – referred to as “Jason” for the purposes of anonymity – reveals the motivating factors behind Williams’ recent discussions…


    The Context

    “Sonny was part of a core group of close mates,” explains Jason, a close associate of Williams for the better part of a decade.

    This group, comprising of Roy Asotasi, Mark O’Meley, Willie Tonga, Reni Maitua, Braith Anasta, Nate Myles, and, of course, Willie Mason, was what Williams hoped to preserve when he re-signed in 2004. It was, Jason says, “with the ambition of playing footy with his best mates, with each other and for each other, for the best part of their careers”.

    But towards the end of 2005, Anasta signed with the Roosters, and a year later, Myles did likewise, while Asotasi left to join the Rabbitohs.

    Amidst all of this, Sonny received a lucrative offer from ESL club
    St Helens worth A$1.2 million over three years. It was enough to make him seriously consider leaving the 2004 Premiers.

    “He was talked into staying at the Bulldogs by remaining members of his tight crew,” says Jason. “(They were) led by Willie Mason.”

    The group of eight friends had become five, and by the time Sonny’s contract came up for negotiation, Mark O’Meley was in discussions with a number of clubs. But he assured Williams and the rest of the group that he wanted to stay at Belmore to keep them together. Mason, having just re-signed himself, insisted that Williams do likewise.

    After fielding bids from numerous other clubs, Sonny was offered a three year contract extension worth A$1.5 million.

    “Sonny marched into the Dog's offices telling them he wanted a pay cut to help keep O'Meley at the club,” Jason explains. “He also wanted a five year deal to declare to the boys how serious he was about keeping the group together.”

    This drop in pay, however, (from A$500,000 to an estimated A$350,000), was not enough, with O’Meley joining the Roosters just weeks later, and Mason following a few months after that due to a dispute with Bulldogs management.

    “Sonny was stuck with a decreased pay and extended contract, all for nothing.”

    Before long, Willie Tonga had signed with the Cowboys, and Reni Maitua was also considering leaving. Shortly thereafter, Williams, feeling betrayed, fired his manager “for reasons only Sonny knows”.

    The Contract

    Outside of simply taking a pay cut, there were issues surrounding the actual structure of the contract itself.

    The exact details of Williams’ contract are confidential, (“even his brothers and sisters don’t know how much he’s earning”), but some of the basic terms are known.

    “His current contract includes his leave pay – not actual holiday time – in his weekly salary as well as his superannuation.”

    As the Macquarie National News stated: “The terms of the contract mean Williams will be paid the same amount in 2012 that he was paid in 2007, regardless of inflation or his own performances. (He) is effectively earning about A$200,000 a season after tax.”

    The Conclusion

    And so, with Sonny eventually reaffirming his commitment to his contract, the saga appears to be over – for the time being, anyway.

    Despite what many fans have felt, and the numerous unfounded rumours upon which media stories have been based, Williams was not being disloyal or self-centred. In fact, it was the precise opposite that found him in such an awkward position.

    If there was one thing he was guilty of, it was being naïve. The “fantasy”, as Jason defines it, of enduring the remainder of his career alongside his best mates was simply not to be.

    There is a tragic air of innocence lost in this tale. Sonny Bill Williams is much more likely to put his own needs first when he next reaches the negotiation table.


    ***

    Sources:
    "Jason" - thank you, kind sir!
    Macquarie National News
    www.news.com.au
    www.nzherald.co.nz
    www.smh.com.au - an insight into the ESL deal Sonny turned down: http://www.smh.com.au/ffxmedia/2005/03/09/1003sonnybill.jpg
    www.wikipedia.org
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  4. Bumble

    Bumble First Grade

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    ...and Souths are here

    Bumble (c)
    Dogs of War
    Marshall_magic
    skeepe
    rabs

    Master Vippo
    nqboy
     
  5. Dogs Of War

    Dogs Of War First Grade

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    Dogs of Wars takes up the first hitup of the game for the Rabbitohs and runs for an amazing 750 words....


    ***


    Building the foundations for the future.


    The NRL has been stealing ideas for the game from their American cousins in the NFL for years, things such as the video referee where introduced over there first, before being brought to the NRL, so why stop there?

    One of the best things about the NFL, is the conference system, which sees you grouped with local teams (well as local as it can get in America), building rivalries amongst these teams. These matchups tend to be the most anticipated matchups of the season, and the NRL should be looking to take a leaf out of there book, to help revitalise the game, not just in Sydney, but around Australia.

    Currently the NRL has a de facto conference system, it is just that it changes every year as it is based on the finishing position from the previous year, so what is needs to happen is to set these groups in stone to maximise crowds and minimise travelling where possible. As well the current NRL system, can be farcical already, with well performing teams the previous year (ie Bulldogs and Cowboys), turning around and become the easy beats the next year. A conference system would provide some much needed transparency to the draw.

    For starters, I would probably suggest groups of 4 for conferences. Each conference could play home and away internally (6 games), and also all the other conferences once (12 games), with a rotating system that sees them play one of the other conferences twice in a season (for 4 more games). Which means clubs will have 22 matches a season.

    As far as conferences go, I would suggest something like this.

    Northern Conference
    North Queensland
    Brisbane
    Gold Coast
    New Zealand

    Western Conference
    Wests
    Penrith
    Parramatta
    Canterbury

    Southern Conference
    Canberra
    St George
    Melbourne
    Cronulla

    Eastern Conference
    Sydney City
    Newcastle
    Souths Sydney
    Manly

    The other bonus is that like the NFL, clubs would then be able to call themselves champ of the local rivalries by being the best team within the division championship. As well you have a team from each region qualifying for the finals, which nearly guarantees a team from QLD is involved in the finals, one from West Sydney etc. And if the NRL ever expands, new teams can be placed within a conference (or the conferences readjusted, to maximise local rivalries). Not to mention that teams like Melbourne, would suddenly have traditional rivals, and I believe there supporters would find this appealing, and look forward to the matches against teams within there conference knowing that a guaranteed finals spot is on the line every time they face these teams. And on the other side of the equation, you get matchups like Bulldogs vs Parramatta, which will bring a huge amount of support when these teams are playing for a chance at a wildcard spot.

    As far as the finals would go, the finalists would be the 4 conference winners, plus the next best 4 teams based on win loss record. The intricacies of that could be worked out later.

    Another bonus is that you can make the intra division games near the start of the season (so within the first 6 rounds), and towards the end of the season (last 6 games), so that these clashes draw huge crowds as the contenders and pretenders are sorted out, and it guarantees that these games at the end of season are teams playing off for a finals position, something that isn't guaranteed at the moment.

    Other possibilities include new income streams for the NRL, via selling off naming rights for the Divisions (do I hear a Harvey Norman Western Conference anyone?), as well as once Origin is starting to lose it’s appeal (which is unlikely in the short term), a move to an all star Conference game, where the best players within each conference represent the conference.

    I am sure that there are plenty of other things that have been missed, but putting in place the framework of something like this, which places the local rivalries as the most important element of the game, and in doing so, maximises the value of the game within Sydney, as well as the rest of the county, would see the NRL with a much more marketable product, and one that brings that tribal feel back to the NRL. So come on NRL, it’s time to build the foundations for the game that will take it to the next level. Conferences can be that foundation.


    ***
     
    Last edited: Jul 2, 2008
  6. rayroxon

    rayroxon Juniors

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    Rayroxon hits the ball up for the Warriors and clears his ears after his skippers screams. Not cool man, not cool...

    *****​

    Will He Mason?

    Drunk: “Mate, what happened to the dunny?”
    Barman: “Massive fight last night. Some bloke threw another through the cubicle.”
    “Where’s your manager?”
    “What?”
    “The manager. I’m a stonemason.”
    “Ok…”
    “I can fix it. I’ve been cleaning the sandstone out front.”
    “….”
    “Have you noticed it’s cleaner?” (Leaves to check it’s still clean)
    “You seen it?”
    “Mate, to be honest, I haven’t.”
    “Well it’s cleaner. Go out and look at it….and I can fix your dunny. Tell your boss I’ll be in tomorrow.” (Leaves)
    “….”

    League gives you access to humanity at its finest. It grants access to conversations you could never have dreamed of and Sunday was no exception.

    We had a big touring party with us as everyone seems to become a Tigers fan when they play at Leichardt. We had chosen our spot in front of the screen, in line with the 20-30 metre section and set up for the afternoon. We were well stocked with the Steak bars that some bloke was handing out at the hill entrance. It was sunny and the beer was cheap. Life was very good.

    In front of us sat the oldest twenty-something Raiders supporter ever. If time had been good to Ruben Wiki it had not been good to this bloke. Damaged by the ravages of alcohol, tobacco and supporting a team from our nation’s capital, he was only held together by his Super League edition Raiders Jersey. “Wiki, I love ya”, and the more imaginative “WIKI”, were his mantras for the afternoon and it brought a bit of colour to the hill. The Warriors jumped out to a 16-0 lead early in the first half and our Raiders friend was in raptures. He puffed like a chimney and swore like a sailor all for the love of one man who was now our man. The silence of the hill helped him preach his message.

    The Tigers hit back with a try reminiscent of “That 2005 Grand Final Try” and it was to be applauded. You go to games to watch your team and the star players at work and it was a worthwhile show. What wasn’t worthwhile, however, was the nature in which the Tigers got back into the match, and soon after half time it was 16 all.

    The Warriors claimed the lead through Sam Rapira. The hill yelled “Knock his head off!” We replied on behalf of Sam “Leave it on, please” and fortunately the game continued with no decapitations. The home fans were kind enough to show the visitors which way the exits were as they sadly filed out with 15 on the clock. Two tries in the last three minutes saw the home fans rue their early departures and a conversion miss from the sideline sealed a memorable day for all.

    I embraced the fragrant Raiders fan and we both shed a tear as we watched Tim Sheens present Ruben with a Tigers jersey and the great man walked off with our collective hearts through a players’ guard of honour.

    We headed towards the bus and got on just before an unsuspecting guy in a Maroon jersey. He got to the back of the bus only to cop a foul spray from a seemingly normal and reserved female fan who called him every type of Arsehole under the sun. From the xenophobic “Get the f**k out of my state”, to the always clever “Queenslanders are homos”, it ensured an entertaining bus ride for all.

    With our ears ringing, we got off the bus at Central. We decided that we would have a celebratory drink or two and wandered into a pub. I went downstairs to relieve myself of the built up excitement and noticed that the toilet seemed to have collapsed in on itself. Chunks of plaster lay strewn around the fallen walls. It was a mess.

    I went to the bar and just before I could ask what the last guy had eaten, a bloke staggered in from the street and started chatting to the barman.

    “Mate, what happened to the dunny?”

    And you now know the rest. Could another code have gotten me to that point in my life? Probably not. League is an education. Who knew stonemasons could fix toilets? It's a social solvent and the anthropological snapshot of our times. That last one might be a bit of a stretch but it makes for a good anecdote. It even offers up some footy and, heaven knows I love mine.
    *****​
    (749 words between the stars)​
     
  7. Marshall_magic

    Marshall_magic Coach

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    Marshall Magic makes the break and throws the hail Mary, looking for anyone

    *********************
    How Ben destroyed his team and damaged his future.
    Ben Te’o is not the biggest name in the NRL, but he was one of the best kids coming through the ranks. Late in season 07 Wests Tigers coach Tim Sheens used him as his X-factor off the bench, to come on and turn the game on its head. Whilst he wouldn’t have much of an effect on the result (due to his sides poor form), he would make a considerable impact; with one of his first hit ups breaking the line. Of course like all rookies, he made some rookie mistakes, but it was clear, the talent was there.

    Season 08 came around, this was a contract year for him, and his first one at that. After starting the year in solid form for a month or so, Ben hit top form, and started scoring loads of tries, putting him equal with speedster Chris Lawrence as the clubs top try scorer for the season. When he was set to ink a deal for 3 more seasons at the club, he had a fall out with his player manager. They split, and Ben was left to sort out his contract for 2009 and beyond by himself.

    Being a young bloke in top form, he was keen to cash in. He personally contacted 15 rival NRL clubs to see if they would put forward an offer for him. Receiving several replies, he then had to make his own decision, and like all young players, he had a decline in on field form. The tries dried up, and he turned from a weapon to a liability.

    With the decrease in form, the offers were slowly withdrawn by the clubs, leaving him with fewer options for his future. The Tigers consistently gave him deadlines if he wished to stay, which he never met. The issue dragged on and on and his form got worse and worse. After conceding a soft try against the Warriors (one of many during the whole fiasco), Wests Tigers team leader Chris Heighington gave him an on field serve, and coach Tim Sheens (who previously held the bloke in high regard) gave him an early shower, only half an hour into the game.

    Not only was Ben’s form declining, but his side was gradually sliding down the premiership table, slowly out of finals contention. Ben eventually received a tap on the shoulder and was told the club would not be re-signing him. Whilst Ben was breaking every deadline the club gave him, halfback Matthew Head was begging the club to re-sign him but receiving nothing. With his lack of a contract offer, his form also was dropping off, and reports suggested that team mates were not happy with the situation.

    Matthew was not the only one to receive little love from the club, club captain Brett Hodgson was also seeking a 3 year contract, which would see out his NRL career. The club would only offer him 1, and so he signed a contract with English club Huddersfield. Whilst Brett is still playing excellent football for his club, losing a captain who is loyal, and prepared to overlook the big coin from overseas clubs and stay with his side, for a disloyal kid who will ask every NRL club what they have to offer before putting pen to paper would really frustrate the younger players.

    As the club gradually slips out of the top 8 race, Ben’s market value is gradually decreasing. Whilst he claims to have finally made a decision, it is clearly not with the Tigers as he is the most heartless player to ever put on a black, gold and white jersey. Going back to the days of Terry Lamb as coach and floundering around the bottom 4 every year, with players that have a lack of talent and ability, you will find players who still had heart and passion. Ben has neither of these attributes, and despite having more skill that any other back rower at the club, his laziness has had fans calling for his head, With the events that occurred during the Tigers vs Warriors game on Sunday, it looks like we will see exactly that.

    Ben had the world at his feet, but his greed and arrogance has cost him a long term contract with the Wests Tigers, and forced many of his team mates to turn on him. Whilst he has the skills he lacks passion, a major part of today’s game.

    *********************
    750 words between the stars
     
  8. JonB

    JonB Juniors

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    TheWarriors JonB is tearing down the sideline at an alarming rate! But he does not have the ball.........

    ****************
    Boned!

    Over the last two years I have been plunged into a world that revolves around biomedical sciences. It has been a focus of my life simply because it has been my occupation to study them.

    Because of this, the scope of what I feel I can write about effectively in a Forum Sevens match is somewhat limited, especially considering other parts of my life have taken me away from the great game of Rugby League and sports in general.

    Therefore, the intention of this article is to hopefully clearly explain and discuss the spiral fracture that occurred in round 7 this year to Manu Vatuvei’s left tibia.

    One thing I have come to appreciate is how incredible and complex the human body is. There are many aspects that make bones amazing; they make blood cells, protect vital organs, and allow for movement. One very cool aspect of bones is the strength that they have. There are two key components to bone strength. The first component is collagen fibers, which are everywhere throughout the body, hair, skin, nails, and bone – the bodies utility so to speak. Collagen fibers give tissues strength to resist bending forces. As an example, try to snap your hair.

    The second part of bone that provides strength is calcium phosphate. This is a 'salt' and gives our bones great strength to resist forces that come from impact or compression.

    Overall, bone has a greater strength than reinforced concrete.

    It is a combination of both these factors that allow our boys to catch a ball and run at each other at full throttle and get up and do it for another 79 minutes and 50 seconds after kick off.


    So this sort of begs the question: how come Manu broke his leg in a tackle that did not have a great deal of force behind it?


    Usually fractures occur when either multiple forces are put on the bone or a twisting force is applied. So the moral of the story is to get smashed, but not twisted around and about in a tackle.


    This is especially consistent with what Manu was diagnosed with, a spiral fracture.


    Moving on, the more bone that is broken the longer it takes to heal, unsurprisingly. This is evident by Stacey Jones’ forearm break or the cyst that was cut out of Ali Lauti’iti’s arm in 2003.

    Depending on the severity of the break, it can take between 6 and 8 weeks for a regular fracture to return to a functional level, while the healing process is not usually complete for around 3 to 4 months after the injury.

    The healing process itself can be described in four steps. Firstly, the forming of a ‘fracture hematoma’ occurs. This happens because blood vessels inside the bone are ruptured. This is fully formed after about 6 to 8 hours, and because of this rupture bone cells nearby to the fracture die off. All this dead material needs to be removed this takes several weeks to accomplish.

    Secondly, there is the formation of the ‘fibrocatilaginous callus’. This is a bit of a mouthful but it’s not overly complicated. This callus is essentially a bit of connective tissue that is eventually turned into bone. Its role in recovery is to bridge the gap between the two sides of the fracture in the bone.

    The third step is the bony callus formation. This is when the callus is turned into bone.

    And the final part of the recovery process is called ‘bone remodeling’. This is when the bony callus is turned into compact bone from spongy bone, making it extremely strong. This last part of healing also corrects the shape of the damaged bone and takes around 3 to 4 months to complete.

    All fractures are different from each other to some extent. Most are comparatively mild while others can be potentially fatal. As long as you don't hear a large snap or see bone poking out of the skin, fractures will heal naturally, sometimes after a painful reduction. More often than not though, the fact there was an injury is not noticeable and a full recovery can be anticipated and expected.

    So, unless there were some unpublished complications Warrior nation can expect a fully fit and rampaging Manu Vatuvei back in action very soon, and back to his beastly best, something I feel can not happen soon enough.

    **********

    733 words between the stars

    EDITED: A few grammatical fixations took place. second edit, same sort of stuff.
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  9. rabs

    rabs Moderator Staff Member

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    rabs for the bunnies latches onto Marshall Magic's hail mary and sets sail for the line...


    The Club

    Everyone wants it all these days and they want it now. Patience seems to be an extinct quality in today’s fast paced world. Fast food, mobile internet, buy now pay later, high disposable incomes and must have McMansions resulting in babies in child care at 3 months. Who takes the time to smell the roses these days? Certainly not rugby league fans it seems.

    The game I grew up with on was based on the club. The club consisted of at least the first and reserve grade, sometimes the under 18’s as well. In the NSWRL we had the under 23’s as the third match and later it became a not age restricted third grade. I can’t recall ever deliberately going to the game with the intention of watching the first grade only. Unless other commitments imposed, we always turned up to see all the grades play and it was always a great day out. The lower grades in the big time have been a bit of a dogs breakfast for a while now, with some teams having lower grade teams and others not, and the club related teams were not always scheduled at the same venue or even on the same day. In my opinion this was a situation that has attributed to the NRL only interest from many of today’s supporters.

    Enter the National Youth Cup for under 20’s in 2008. When I first heard about this concept I was greatly excited as it signalled a return to the good times of my youth when a day out at the footy guaranteed more than one game; on the same day, at the same ground, for my club. I have attended a fiver of matches this year, each time arriving before the under 20’s game to ensure I get to see the up and coming players who may well be future first graders or even stars in the making.

    We are always hearing complaints of how expensive tickets to the footy are, my question is do these whingers make the most of their ticket and arrive for the early game? Based on what I have seen so far this season the answer would be a big no. Now we have the correlated club games there’s no reason to not turn up early. Every game I’ve attended has seen minnow crowds turning up for the under 20’s, and when I’ve seen it on television it’s the same every time. Just the handful of diehards who are willing to take the time to smell the roses.

    Watching the youth comp games has enabled me to be familiar with guys like Chris Sandow and Luke Capewell when they arrived in first grade. When Lachlan Coote and Wade Graham debuted for Penrith I wasn’t just interested because they were young guys getting a run in the big time; I had already been watching them so there was an increased interest and excitement, same with Justin Carney for the Raiders, Tony Williams for Parramatta and the list goes on. At a Gold Coast versus Warriors game I saw a kid named Shannon Walker bamboozle the opposition defence with his silky footwork and deception. We have all these super young players graduating and it’s just the first season of the under 20’s comp. Last count I heard it was something like 20 or more players coming up into NRL. Sure the junior reps have been around since day dot and they continue to be there but it’s the elevation in exposure of this under 20’s comp that has given more punters access to the stars of the future.

    For most of us the first time we ever saw Israel Folau or Greg Inglis would have been in Melbourne’s first grade team. Now with the National Youth competition the masses will get to see their youngsters on the way up and at the same time enjoy a great day out at the footy watching their ‘club’ in action. The Youth Cup is self promoting itself with several exciting graduates already so I hope that in the coming season or two all fans recognise the value of watching the early game.

    ***696 words by the counter
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  10. Jesbass

    Jesbass First Grade

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    After fisticuffs break out between the referee and the two touch judges, Warriors hooker Misanthrope takes a wayward punch to the chest and is carried from the field. Diagnosis: broken heart.

    OUT: Misanthrope
    IN: byrne_rovelli_fan82
     
  11. byrne_rovelli_fan82

    byrne_rovelli_fan82 First Grade

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    byrne_rovelli_fan82 for the Warriors dances with the defense

    ~~~~

    Super Boot


    [​IMG]

    The NRL is lucky that over the years it has seen some wonderful goal kickers in its time. In a game as tough and fast as rugby league, sometimes it’s not always the big hits or try scoring heroics that count the most. Instead it is those vital penalties and conversions or a big drop out that can make all the difference.

    Current Warriors five-eighth Michael Witt is a shining light and his kicking skills in 2007 showcased just that.

    Round 14, Sharks v Warriors at Toyota Park - The game Witt came of age.

    With the rain pelting down and mistakes aplenty from both sides, the Warriors entered the second half with a narrow 6-2 lead. The wind picked up causing further problems with handling which also made kicking for field position that much harder. The Warriors fought long into the second half having messed up two great opportunities before finally scoring in the last few minutes. Witt was up to take the kick, having already converted a try in the first half from an easier angle. Unfortunately for him, this conversion was at a wide angle. If the kick missed, it was understandable as the Warriors had wrapped the game up and the strong winds would make it tough even for the best kickers. However, Witt struck the ball sweetly and it swung with the wind first to the left and then back to the posts and over the black dot. It was the icing on the cake. The kick stressed two points. Firstly, it emphasised that the Warriors were back in business. After suffering that painful 6 game losing streak they were back and ready to rock. Secondly, in the previous week Witt only had two shots at goal before handing the goal kicking duties back to first choice kicker Tony Martin. In the space of two weeks Witt’s goal kicking underscored what the Warriors had been missing in a goal kicker - accuracy. Since current coach and former Warriors goal kicker Ivan Cleary retired, goal kicking was usually abysmal for the club. But, thanks to that goal they had found the perfect replacement in Witt

    Round 19, Warriors v Dragons at Mt Smart Stadium - Witt has a kicking Masterclass.

    The Dragons came to town not exactly playing their best football in 2007 and the Warriors wasted little time in getting down to business. Following their red hot form against cellar dwellers the Penrith Panthers, the Warriors piled on the points and Witt made it extra special with his goal kicking. Every try was a guaranteed six points, which just hammered the nail deeper into the Dragons’ coffin. Any semblance of a fight back was effectively snuffed out early and the extra points Witt added also aided the for-and-against tally for the Warriors. With a handy lead the fans and even the players could relax and enjoy the day. Over the next few weeks for the Warriors four point tries were to become certain six pointers because of Witt's radar boot. The streak was eventually broken on the road against the Tigers at Leichardt Oval, and the most disappointed person the streak was over was Witt – the sign of a true professional.

    Round 21, Roosters v Warriors at Aussie Stadium - Witt’s going the distance.

    It was a game that was later referred to as “one of the best games in 2007”, “a modern classic”. The Roosters jumped out to an early lead then momentum swung and the Warriors piled on the points as Witt was back to his goal kicking best. He slotted over the conversions as the Warriors clawed their way back into the match. While general field kicking was terrible, Witt more than made up for it with two great kicks in general play. The Roosters were up by one with less than a minute to go. Hot on attack but still some distance out, Witt gets the ball and kicks a field goal to tie the game. Then, in golden point extra time with time ticking away, Witt kicks a magnificent drop out going 70 meters getting the Warriors out of jail and allowing them to defend the last few seconds outside their red zone.

    It's fast approaching the business end of the 2008 season, and I have a feeling that Michael Witt will feature with another clutch conversion or long distance drop out. Even if he doesn’t, it’s still a joy to watch a true master at his craft.
    ~~~

    747 words between the '~' according to the official word counter
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  12. skeepe

    skeepe Immortal

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    skeepe runs out for his first appearance in 4 years.

    Keep it Simple, Stupid!

    Over the years, we as rugby league fans have long derided those that follow the other rugby code as being fans of a game that was far too complicated that even the players didn’t know what was going on half the time. And we’ve been right. But can we really claim that now? It dawned on me, as I heard the commentators using words like “separation” and “key performance indicators” for the umpteenth time, that rugby league has gone down exactly the same path.

    The game is, quite simply, becoming too confusing. In years past, the game was easy to follow. If the referee thought a bloke knocked it on, he bloody well knocked it on. Decisions were easy to follow, and you weren’t left scratching your head wondering how the referee saw it differently to everyone else watching the game. Well, that’s how it seemed anyway. There are, as with anything, some notable exceptions to the rule. Just ask Balmain fans.

    How many times, as a fan, can you honestly say you have no idea how a decision was reached? How many times do you think the referee got it wrong, only to be told by the powers that be that it was the correct decision because of some obscure law that nobody has ever heard of makes it so? It borders on the ridiculous at times. Many a time I have often wondered what it must be like to be a player. Most occasions, it was because I idolised them, and wanted to be just like them. Now, I often pity them, for they too seem none the wiser as to which particular long-forgotten law will be over-zealously enforced this week.

    One of the most confusing things that players, club administrators, fans and commentators all talk about is the interpretations of the video referee. How much doubt is too much doubt to give the benefit to the attacking team? When is a seemingly legitimate try not a try? Is what appears to be a one man tackle really a one man tackle, or has a defender or two dropped off? I could go on and on. Several commentators, most notably among them Phil Gould, already have.

    Then there’s the confused meaning of downward pressure. If a player has no control, can he be said to have downward pressure on the ball or not? No matter who you talk to, you seem to get a different answer. Tries that have been awarded this year would have been disallowed not even 12 months ago, such is the looseness of the definition today.

    Things have become even worse this year, with the introduction of using the video referee to rule on knock ons. This wouldn’t normally be such a big issue, however it has become apparent that this is more a lottery, with the decisions not always conforming to a common sense view.

    There is evidence to suggest that the fans, rather than embrace this brave new world, have decided to halve the aspirin bill and not give themselves the headache. Indeed, the situation has become so severe – at least if you believe the press – that the dreaded “r” word – rationalisation – has been mentioned. We only need ask North Sydney fans how successful and game-growing that was last time around.

    There’s an easy solution, but one that the powers that be at the NRL do not appear to have the gumption to implement. Keep it simple! Do away with the unnecessary video interference. Do away with the buzzwords and key performance indicators. If it looks like a knock on, chances are it’s a knock on. An obstruction should only be an obstruction if a player is actually obstructed. There should only be one type of tackle, not three. Do away with the passive offside (where a player in an offside position doesn’t take any part in the play). Do away with the inconsistency.

    As a general rule, people love rugby league. What they love about it, however, is the skill, the excitement, the big hits and the amazing tries, not the agonising wait for the 500th replay to be shown, not the 3rd repacking of the same scrum (when we all know what the result is going to be anyway), and definitely not the bizarre rules that nobody understands. Keep it simple NRL. Just keep it simple.

    734 words including title
     
  13. sportsthought

    sportsthought Juniors

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    sportsthought on for the Warriors.

    **************
    Poster Child


    Are you a useful forum poster?

    Have you settled for following the forums, instead of making up your own mind? Do you make ‘useful’ posts that are actually useless?

    Unsure?

    If the below describes your typical week, then sadly the answer is yes.

    Pre Game - You’re ready to rock. Your team, playing poorly for most of the season is about to run out against a top 4 side...



    Post game - You log onto your favourite forum for the post match debate. 

There is of course the ‘playmaker’ thread. It seems different each week, but actually it's always the same.

    Last week the playmaker was useless and had about as much chance of setting up a try as he does of pulling Paris Hilton. Your contribution comes in the form of a useful post about how it is unbelievable that our coach keeps selecting the #7, despite the fact that he's useless and we could get better from the Jim Beam or NYC squads.

    You think about repeating this in this week’s ‘utility back should start’ thread, but then remember that you bagged the hell out of him five days ago, following his dropped bomb that cost the team victory last week.

 Someone then agrees with you in the playmaker thread, only confirming what you and every other fan have known for two years now. You wonder why coaching staff and management don’t listen to us – the fans. We’re the ones who sacrifice other stuff so we can buy season tickets or Pay TV subscriptions. All those passionate fans can’t be wrong?

    You put these thoughts down as another useful post.

    Oh hello, the ‘ageing second rower’ thread has started. Some fool reckons he had a great game - perhaps he missed the intercept pass that led to a try? The fool gets shot down soon enough; the weight of numbers sees to that.

    Tired, you head to bed, frustrated at the team, and frustrated for your fellow fans - week in week out we have to put up with this crap. But at least the guy posting about our second row has now been educated.

    Sunday - You join in the chorus of fans calling for some of the NYC young guns to be promoted to the senior side for their next game. They are ready now! There is no reason to hold them back. You re-iterate this, and remind everyone about our former development squad winger – now established at another club and thriving.

    We keep letting our great young talent go, while we keep picking veterans.

In the ‘team for the next round’ thread you cleverly pick most of the young guns, including the fullback with the X factor. Bring him in now! He’s good enough! You go one better by leaving out a certain youngster as he’s “too raw”.

    Monday – the team announce they have lured yet another one cap Origin player to join the ones already here – fantastic. The bloke has played Origin and will stiffen the team’s defence no end. Strangely someone starts a re-hash of an old thread about the coach holding back young local talent in favour of discards. This could not be a truer statement and you post accordingly.


    Tuesday Afternoon and WTF???? It’s the same halfback! Surely last week was the last straw. WTF is the coach doing? The #7 must be blowing the coach right?? Several wise forum users agree with you. Fuming!



    Wednesday - You decide to add to the ‘this week’s tipping’ thread. Although you wrongly picked the Eels over the Dragons last round, you suspected deep down that actually the Dragons would beat them. Gutted!

    Never mind, you’ll tip with your heart next time. On the ladder, you’re still in touch with the leaders, a few good rounds and you’ll be top 10 again, like you were after round 3. Thankfully, it’s still early days.



    Thursday - Some idiot reckons that the injured prop might be back early in time for the last few rounds. You respond swiftly with a useful post about how there is no need to rush players back from knee injuries like that.



    Friday - You slip in one more post to increase your overall post count, changing your Forum status from “Legend’ to “Immortal”. Feeling pretty good about things, you head into the weekend, ready to rock.

    So is this YOU?

    I challenge you to ask yourself; have I actually got anything meaningful to say?

    Or am I another ‘useful’ poster?

    *************
    Inspiration for this comes from the Gotan Raider at seoblackhatdiary.org
    745 words between the stars
     
    Last edited: Jul 3, 2008
  14. Bumble

    Bumble First Grade

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    Hey guys, I've come down with some food poisoning and really can't find the energy to do the last 100 or so words of my piece - So I'm subbing myself out for Vippo and here is his article via proxy:

    The Real Competition

    The NRL is a competition between 16 teams, but the real competition, as I see it, is between rival codes. Particularly between Australian Rules Football, Rugby League, Rugby Union and Soccer. And the question you probably think I’m going to ask is how does Rugby League win? But the real question at hand here is, have we already lost?

    Sounds a bit harsh and as a one-eyes Rugby League supporter, I can already hear the readers mind closing and the four letter words being directed at me. But is it really that harsh? Back pages in NSW newspapers are being filled with the dire straights that Sydney Rugby League clubs are in. With the poker machine tax, Sydney’s congested market for League, poor crowds, players streaming towards the UK and lack of international competition, doomsday heralds are everywhere. Of course it has nothing to do with doomsday making for great reading…

    So can League clubs survive this poker machine tax? Can they survive losing their players? And can they draw substantial crowds in a market so overloaded with teams, many of which playing at a relatively neutral venue, which is renowned for being a poor place to watch…anything? Well yes, with a few changes I presume they can. Obviously teams survive without huge amounts of money being injected by a Leagues club. And in reality, if people gambling on something totally unrelated to League, is the only thing keeping League afloat, then either those clubs are incredibly poorly run, or they aren’t popular enough to justify existence. Sounds cruel, but that’s business.

    I don’t know clubs finances intimately, and I don’t claim to have a solution, but television money would certainly help, as is reported, having owners on both side of the table doesn’t build productivity. Playing games where people actually want to see them would increase League’s popularity, which inturn is going to increase marketing sales and revenue. But whatever the solution, this isn’t the biggest challenge.

    Player’s charging to the airports to get to Britain so they can play in the Super League for game-show style money definitely doesn’t help League’s cause. Players leaving means that there are less quality (and even first grade standard) players in the NRL. Which means you team has a worse team. It also means that the games are played at a much lower quality. Obviously no matter how you look at it, its not good. So how do you fix it. Short answer, there probably isn’t one. Oh, just raise the salary cap, or just get rid of it. I mean sure it has levelled out the comp, but who wants to see games without our best players? Well as already documented, money is tight.

    Many clubs would not be able to afford much higher player payments, and obviously no team wants to get the ‘spoon, so they would run themselves out of existence trying to keep up with richer clubs. So taking that into account, is having less clubs and a higher ‘cap an option? Well before surveys to see this plans viability, I can already say, from the past that taking teams away usually means taking fans too, and League can scarcely afford to lose fans. But whatever the solution, this isn’t the biggest challenge.

    The biggest challenge starts at the so called ‘grassroots level’. Soccer is the most popular childhood sport in most areas, but this has always been so, its expected and isn’t currently hurting League. AFL however is a big ’mover and shaker’. I was recently listening to call-back radio (not by choice mind you), and I was hearing a rather well informed gent talking about how many CRL teams had folded, or been relegated to a lower group. Meanwhile AFL has been booming in the bush. New teams have been sprouting up all over the place.

    Places which used to have strong teams-Tamworth, Quirrindai, Musswellbrook now have weak teams. Meanwhile their AFL teams are charging to the top of their groups. It is most alarming and League needs to inject large amounts of money and planning into this area or it faces more than just financial difficulties. This is more scary than poker machine taxes, we can work our way around that. More scary than players leaving, we can always grow news ones…or can we?

    Be aware League fans, and put you thinking caps on. Or learn to love AFL.


    737 words
     
  15. Willow

    Willow Administrator

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  16. byrne_rovelli_fan82

    byrne_rovelli_fan82 First Grade

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    Good luck Warriors and Rabbits!
     
  17. Jesbass

    Jesbass First Grade

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    Well done to both teams, especially Souths for rallying so well and bouncing back from last round's match. :clap:

    A good, old fashioned 5v5 contest! Over to you, ref! :D

    And Bumble, get well soon! ;-)
     
  18. rayroxon

    rayroxon Juniors

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    Looks to be a nice honest hit out. Go team and well done to all for making it a contest.
     
  19. Misanthrope

    Misanthrope Moderator Staff Member

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    Good on you, lads! Sorry that my pulled heart-string saw me sidelined, but thanks to brf for subbing in!
     
  20. byrne_rovelli_fan82

    byrne_rovelli_fan82 First Grade

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    Not a problem Mis! That's what team mates are for! :)
     

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