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Are the Sharks moving in on the Illawarra?

1992 final series - Saints beat Newcastle 3-2 and Saints backed up the following week to beat Steelers 4-0. I remember f**k all from 1992, except being at those 2 games.
I was right behind the Dragons that year. Mainly due to their coach Brian Smith. Still regard him as the best RL pundit we've ever had on UK TV. Admittedly that`s a desperately low bar in a milieu where an ability to speak basic English in anything other than platitudes marks you out as suspiciously intellectual. Nonetheless he was instrumental in helping me see the game in greater depth.

Brian was in England after a tough few years at the Steelers in the mid 80s. On the back of his coaching at Hull FC a number of their players made the G.B. team for the 1990 Kangaroos test series.

If the 1992 Winfield Cup finals series is indicative of the level of scoring in the regular season, it`s worth noting that this period was just before we moved to a 10m offside line.

Illawarra narrowly lost the final of the Panasonic Cup to the Broncos in 1989. Among the highlights at Parramatta Stadium were some heart-warming exchanges between Steelers fans and everyone's favourite Queenslander. I once had the pleasure of seeing this bloke at close quarters earlier that decade when he was over here playing on a short-term contract with Wakefield Trinity. Even joined in with the choruses of "Wally's a W####r". Happy days.
They’ve kind of expanded recently. A bit.
This ties in with your eulogy to the Cronulla junior league model.

Societal attitudes towards the dangers of playing contact sports militate against a revival in areas where demographic trends are challenging. Rugby League's traditionally crass soi-disant claims to be the final word in blood-soaked collision brutality puts us at heightened risk of grass roots decline. Leagues can no longer afford to offer Tackle RL as the only option.

When Monarch Blues Tag launched in 2019, 89 of the initial 116 teams were in the Shire. My understanding is that the NSWRL chose to concentrate the bulk of the investment there due to the high participation rates in Touch and Oztag. Success breeds success.

Same lesson applies to international development. Non-contact forms could play a productive role in building a club and social network to underpin the game. But still, the world over, attempts to grow the game take the tired old route of persuading a few RU players to give Tackle RL a go. Hopeless ventures in various parts of North America are especially risible. These perennial fantasists seem to think a pro comp can magically spring up out of nothing.
..& afl will move right into all of Sutherland
How favourable are the demographics of the Sutherland Shire to Fumble expansion?

Other than RL-related insights, my only knowledge of the area comes from the Sylvania Waters TV show.

Plus the Cronulla riot which, on the face of it, looked like it could have been the spill over from a Sharks v Bulldogs game. Bit like Chelsea v Millwall with sand and sunshine.

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