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Round 4: Newtown Vs Sharks


Newtown Vs Sharks

Game Thread

Please note - This is a game thread only, therefore only game posts can be made here (Teams, Articles). Any other posts will result in loss of points.

**Referee Blows Game On!**

Full Time: Wednesday 18th June, 2003. 9:00PM AEST

Referee: Penelope Pittstop


Bags Team

Moffo (c)
Hass (vc)


Travelling Reserve - Roopy


Jono Russell

yo guys does sharks even have a side, if not can i take over captaincy and bring sharks to a sevens gf ;)


somethingwithjohn said:
yo guys does sharks even have a side, if not can i take over captaincy and bring sharks to a sevens gf ;)
You have to take it up with Tamazoid who is the Sharks captain. This is a comp thread only. There is a Sharks thread in the F7s Central forum. I'm sure they're looking for players. Thanks.


Moffo posting for the Mighty Bags

Raiders v Broncos – A trip through the time warp

Depending on when you read this, you may already know the result of the much anticipated game between the Raiders and the Brisbane Broncos. The result is insignificant though. The point is, the 15th of June 2003 marks the return of the national rugby league, replaced the much maligned notional rugby league.

The early 90s was a time of impressive growth for rugby league. Teams arose out of ‘frontier areas’, such as Perth, Adelaide and Townsville. Years of hard work paid off in 1995 when the rugby league season kicked off with a 20 teams, covering the length and breadth of our great nation (not to forget Auckland). It must be noted however, that much of this hard work arose from years of ‘development’, starting when the NSWRL made a firm decision to expand outside of Sydney. The year was 1982, when Illawarra and Canberra were admitted into the competition. Expansion plans continued across the border in 1988 when teams from Brisbane and the Gold Coast joined the fold, as well as the Newcastle Knights, who returned after almost 80 years out of the domestic comp.

For me growing up as a league fan in the early 90s, there was always one clash that stood out.

Canberra v Brisbane

Unfortunately, the teams never clashed in a grand final. On several occasions, the teams came close, but never did they compete in a season decider. Sometimes the draw conspired against them, at other times injury; who could forget Ricky Stuart going down to injury in a game against Parramatta in 1993. The clashes were mouth watering, be it at ANZ Stadium, Lang Park or Bruce Stadium

Mullins against Renouf – Two of the finest running players to ever grace the field. The mind flashes forward to 2003, where a young Phil Graham lines up against Brent Tate. Graham is definitely the reincarnation of Mullins, and Tate is every bit as dangerous in open field as Renouf was

Alfie v Sticky – Two ultra competitive players. Battled against each other for club and state and contested the halfback spot on many times for country. Their games couldn’t have been more contrasting in nature, Sticky had the long kicking game and Alfie was the master of the grubber. Flashing forward to 2003, Drew and Berrigan are just as different, but in many ways, just as interesting to watch

Bro v Bro – Boxhead Walters up against Kerrod. Another two guys who battled for an elusive spot in the Australian team. Both were brilliant rakes that never took a backward step. Not to different from their reincarnations in 2003, Swain and Woolford.

The clashes go on. One could sit here all day reminisce. However the restrictions of 750 words prohibit such an indulgence.

What makes this game more special is the fact that it is a genuine top of the table clash. The best two performed teams of the year up against each other. One has lived up to reputations; the other has given it to their knockers for three months straight. The two best fullbacks in the game up against each other. ‘Schif’ is the rock at the back, and will need to direct his young backline to mark up against the dangers of Tate and Devere. Lockyer will face a barrage of pace, as the exciting Graham and Monoghan work their magic.

It is much like everything old being new again. People are excited about a game that doesn’t involve a Sydney team. Perhaps rugby league is finally picking up on an idea that was so savagely crippled back in 1995 by the super league war. The notion of taking the game across the country and making it a viable product. The game should draw in excess of 20,000, it will be huge. Personally, I cannot wait, and there is not a blue or white jersey in sight. Bring it on I say. Bring it on the punters say.

Should be a great contest. Let’s just hope that this is the beginning of something big.

One can only hope that the 15th of June 2003 heralds the beginning of the national rugby league, with the word national going beyond the limitations of the marketing concept that it has exclusively been used for thus far



GBT posting for the Bluebags

The Salary Cap, an imperfect but vital rule.

Recent events in the UK have shown once again how problematic a salary cap is.

What is the idea of a salary cap, to protect the weak clubs from overspending, to even out the competition, or both?

The Super League salary cap rules state that no club is allowed to spend more than 50% of it's income on wages, or no more than £1.8 million.

The breaches by Halifax, Hull and St Helens occured during the 2002 season. It has been argued by some fans that Halifax saved themselves from relegation. I find it hard to believe that the Halifax club willfully cheated the system in the way that the Canterbury Bulldogs cheated the NRL - I don't think any recent 'Fax' administration would have been capable of such a crime.

St Helens' current management complained that his club had been penalised for a barmy accounting decision by Saints previous board. Should any club administration be responsible for fiscal failings of their predecessors?

Bradford's 'Kaizer' Chris Caisley was soon putting his opinion forward, claiming the cap is unfair and that in his opinion, the salary cap is a restraint of trade and that unless watertight, could be challenged by any club. I would disagree with his sentiments about the fairness of the cap, but agree that unless it is properly policed is of little use and just pulls the bigger clubs down to the levels of the perrenial underachievers of Super League.

In an ideal World, the salary cap would work. Unfortunately, there are always crooks willing to break rules and or, clubs already overburdened found to be technically (Fiscally speaking) wanting.

Maybe one answer would be to for all clubs to be franchised and the end of automatic promotion and relegation.

Alan Shore

First Grade
1. El Coconuto
2. Diehard
3. Tamazoid (c)
4. Keg
5. Genius Freak
6. Z
7. Booyah
8. Jimbo
9. Aries
10. Frenzy

Subject to change


Ron Roberts

League legend Ron Roberts was recently laid to rest in a Tweed Heads cemetery. Aged 87, he passed away without much media attention but had a great innings and a life-time of achievement.

A StGeorge man, Ron’s passing was marked by black arm bands as the Dragons team took the field in their match against Newcastle. His funeral on the previous Wednesday (11/06/03) was attended by friends and family from all over Australia and abroad.

In a short career which spanned 1949-1951, Ron Roberts played 51 matches for StGeorge and scored 51 tries. He was the competition’s leading try scorer in 1949 and 1950. Those statistics alone should be enough to indicate that Ron Roberts was an extraordinarily talented player.

But his career was overshadowed by a single try he scored in 1950. His effort against Great Britain won the Ashes for Australia for the first time since 1920 and won Ron Roberts sporting immortality. It was a true milestone in League history and was rated by 1980s Rugby League Week poll as the ‘single greatest moment in the game’s history’.

So heralded was this event, that it has obscured an otherwise spectacularly successful career from a winger who played just three spirited seasons with the Dragons.

A big man possessing real speed, Ron Roberts hailed from the Waratah-Mayfield club in Newcastle. He came to Saints in 1949 playing 19 games in what was to prove a sensational debut year. In that premiership winning season, Roberts scored 25 tries for Saints including two in the Grand Final. In the same year he scored eight tries in four matches for New South Wales, one for Sydney against Country, and eight more tries in five matches for Australia during a tour of New Zealand. In what must have been one of the most brilliant debut seasons on record, Ron Roberts scored no less than 42 tries.

In 1950, Ron was again selected for Australia who had the task of wresting the Ashes from the powerful Great Britain side. In the third and deciding Test, the Sydney Cricket Ground was a quagmire. But the weather didn’t dampen the spirits of the crowd who flocked to the SCG and by 10am, it was a sell-out with 47,178 people in attendance.

In atrocious conditions, both sides grafted out little territory and with 14 minutes to go, it was just 2-all. Halfback Keith Holman ignored the mud underfoot and sent the ball wide in an effort to break the deadlock. With quick hands that defied the conditions, the Australians suddenly had an overlap. Ron Roberts caught a long floating pass and set sail for the try-line, scampering 30 yards through the slosh to crash over in the corner. Roberts had just scored the only try of the match to give Clive Churchill’s Australia a 5-2 win and an Ashes victory for the first time in 30 years.

It was a sensational moment that brought the house down. There were scenes of hats and umbrellas being thrown into the air. There were men kissing the SCG mud while others made souvenirs of corner posts, flags and buckets. The pandemonium wasn’t just restricted to the mob as a touch judge claimed the ball. The father of Australian Rugby League, James Giltinan expressed his joy that he had lived long enough to see Australia win back the Ashes. Aged 84, J.J. Giltinan passed away a few weeks later. The end result was that Australia had turned around a generation of loss and Ron Roberts was elevated to legendary status.

Half a century later, in the new millennium, I sat at my computer writing a profile on the exploits of Ron Roberts. I later received an email from a young woman who claimed to be a ‘distant relative’ of Ron Roberts. She asked for any photos of Ron because she heard that he was ‘quite a good looking bloke in his day’. For a player who was all but forgotten by most, it was heartening to know that some folk were still interested enough to ask after this dashing and prolific wing three-quarter. I obliged the writer with a picture and sent a note of thanks. As it turned out, she didn’t know Ron Roberts at all… she was just a fan.

Older StGeorge fans will tell stories of the long-striding winger and how they relished every one of his tries. But history will inevitably remember Ron Roberts as ‘the Saint who won the Ashes.’

*Ref: SOTV, Saints the Legend Lives On, rl1908, Encyclopedia RL players.*

*747 words including title*

Alan Shore

First Grade
***Cronulla Captain***

Origin not for excitement machines?

As Origin time is shortly around the corner again, all the media focus on rugby league is concerning it. Three games. State vs State. Mate against mate. It is the spectacle of the Australian rugby league calendar, and some even say the standard of footy is higher and more exciting than that in Tests (if only for Australia's overwhelming domination of the world level). This is the only area of representative rugby league that is in order.

City-Country was supposed to be a selection trial for Origin. If it was, Johns would be lucky to have the halfback spot, Timmins would not be anywhere near Origin 5/8th, Peachey would be fullback and Minichiello where he belongs on the wing, and Phil Bailey wouldn't even have been considered.

This isn't a criticism of Phil Bailey. I am a Sharks supporter, and in his brief two years at the club he shows passion for the Shark which rivals that of recently departed local junior Dean Treister. Phil has had an awesome season this year and Origin is a just reward. But it really does make a mockery of the so-called 33 man squad.

Looking at both teams, you can see players who don't deserve to be anyhere near the team. The selections of the Turnstile Duo; Timana Tahu and Matt Gidley reeks of Newcastle bias. Ryan O'Hara is miles ahead of Josh Perry on form while Buderus is lucky to hold onto his starting spot with Craig Wing hot on his tails. Ricketson is average at best and everyone knows Timmins isn't a 5/8th, nor is Minichiello a fullback. Peachey was crucified for ONE bad performance. People can say that there are no other 5/8ths but Anasta's ego over-inflating doesn't count for "every other 5/8th". What about Mark McLinden and Preston Campbell? Two of the most in-form players in the competition in the two most in-form teams.

Then you have Queensland. Completely ignoring the sensational form of Penrith's Rhys Wesser and the NRL's leading pointscorer so far this season, Clinton Schifcofske. Matt Sing deserves his spot on the Wing, but again the Queenslanders too have selected players out of their position by putting Robbie O'Davis on the wing. He's hardly been in-form since returning from his drugs suspension. The Roosters' Chris Flannery is also on the bench, where Wesser or Schifcofske would make a much greater impact. Gee is past it and a dynamic forward like Nutley, Beattie or Tookey should have been selected.

You thought Origin teams were selected on form? Think again. Phil Gould still seems to have a problem with Super League clubs, hence him ignoring Canterbury, Cronulla and Canberra in particular. Wayne Bennett doesn't want to admit he is wrong by recalling Schifcofske after dropping him last year. Everything is political in the game. Preston Campbell, Rhys Wesser, Clinton Schifcofske, Mark McLinden and David Peachey are prime examples of form being irrelevant.

So the question remains: Why don't we see exciting players like Peachey, McLinden, Schifcofske, Wesser, Campbell and co in Origin jerseys? The simple sad fact is, Origin selectors refuse to take risks. They prefer having players who play it safe all the time. That means no risk-taking, no taking advantage of an opportunity when it's seen, immediately ruling out the above. No matter how well a player is playing, they won't be selected. Why? They are 'scared' of them having an off-night. To be frank, the possibility, or risk as the selectors like to call it, of these players having a 'bad night' is infinitely better than being almost dead certain that players will be turnstiles and do nothing (read Perry, Tahu, Gidley & Timmins). Selecting McLinden, Wesser etc is well worth the risk.

Thankfully, there is a faint glimmer of hope. With Graham Murray winning every match he has coached City in, he's sure to be the next NSW coach. This guy is fair dinkum and is prepared to 'take the risk' and select this type of player. It might even be soon; especially if NSW lose again this year (as we expect the to do) and Gould spits the dummy again.

State of Origin the most exciting rugby league showpiece in the world? Maybe, but it has a hell of alot more potential to realise. Our showpiece could be so much more.

Words: 718


* Hass * Newtown Bluebags *


Where have all the players gone?
Long time passing.
Where have all the players gone?
Long time ago.
Where have all the players gone?
Gone to Super League every one.

When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

Yesterday Willie Talau signed a three-year deal with the St. Helens Rugby League club in Britain. In the world of player movements it was a fairly routine announcement. It was nothing out of the ordinary. After all, with seventy-two Australasians already plying their trade in the United Kingdom, the declaration that there was going to be a seventy-third was hardly likely to bump Cathy Freeman and her retirement plans off the back pages. However it is this very ordinariness surrounding Talau’s departure from the Bulldogs that concerns me.

Seventy-three is a massive number. It’s even greater than the highest score the Wests Tigers have had racked up against them this year. Yet we seem to be quite blaze about the fact there are seventy-two Australasians (Talau isn’t there just yet) running around in the British Super League at the moment. If these seventy-two players were simply foot-balling geriatrics heading over to the North of England in order to enjoy the twilight years of their league careers then it wouldn’t be such a problem. However the fact of the matter is that there are countless Kiwis and Aussies gracing the paddocks in Britain who are in their foot-balling prime. Names like Jason Smith, Richie Barnett and Colin Best resonate loudly – and they’re just the players from Hull!

The problem is that players are constantly being let go by successful NRL clubs because they cannot fit them under the salary cap. However instead of them then going to less successful teams as is supposed to happen, they are instead being picked up by British clubs with bulging wallets and next to no restrictions standing in their way. Commentators and journalists in Australia are often heard to proclaim that having more teams in the competition is not possible due to the fact that there just aren’t enough quality players to sustain it. What they regularly fail to point out is that there is the equivalent of three twenty-five man squads currently running around in Great Britain. In exchange, Britain has reciprocated by sending back in total the following players… Adrian Morley and Keith Mason. Somehow the numbers don’t seem to add up.

And the mathematics of it all continues to amaze when you delve a little deeper… There are seventy-two imports playing in Britain’s Super League at the moment. And there are twelve clubs participating in the competition. When you divide the two you come up with the average number of imports at every club and seventy-two divided by twelve equals six. That’s right – six imports in every team. That could well be an entire forward pack!

Some officials will happily delude themselves into believing that more Australians in the British competition will raise the standard of Rugby League in that country. However the way to raise the standard of British Rugby League isn’t to fill the club scene with swarms of Australians, but to fill in the International scene with swarms of Test Matches. Great Britain needs to be exposed to the best of the best and for that exposure to be a thing of regularity.

There needs to be room for Rugby League to expand. There needs to be room for more Britons to be playing in the nation’s premier competition. There needs to be room for untapped markets in Australia to cease remaining dormant. There needs to be room for the International scene to grow and blossom. This cannot occur however whilst realistic restrictions fail to be placed on the number of imports allowed in the British Super League. County Cricket only allows two imports per county and there is no such thing as the “grandparents rule” – Rugby League could do well to follow its lead. Something however tells me that the powers that be are unlikely to do so.

To quote from Pete Seeger’s classic anti-war song that I so crudely re-worked at the beginning of this article…

When will they ever learn?
When will they ever learn?

- 699 Words

Cheers and Good Luck.


Team Sub - Gorilla for Legend

Gorillas Article -

Gorilla for the ‘Bags

The Greatest Ever Winger

Well, you’ve no doubt heard about how great a winger was or is Wendell Sailor or Lote Toquiri, that Nathan Blacklock topped the NRL try-scorers list three year running. Older folk will no doubt remember Larry Corowa, or Les Kiss, or Michael Cleary or Ken Irvine as great wingers. All of them athletic, strapping players.

The greatest ever winger was, however, a middle-sized, balding old-looking coot (some called him frail and gaunt) with a ungainly and awkward, almost tottering running style who wore so many bandages on his knees he looked like he’d gone missing from Harold Park Trots.

What’s more the greatest ever winger never played for Australia or England, in fact he was hardly ever seen by Aussies - he only played a few lower grade games for Sydney’s Eastern Suburbs before World War 2, but he did play for a couple of English league teams, most notably Warrington.

Brian Bevan was in the navy during the 2nd world war and he turned up in England looking for matches. He played OK, nothing flash and was offered a contract. Believe it or not he then had to sail back to Australia, get demobbed, then return to England to take up his contract. All by sea.

Once he started he didn’t stop. This bloke was a try scoring machine and played so many games he streeted the opposition for try scoring and will never be beaten, by anyone at anytime. Bevan scored a world record 796 tries in first class matches, the next closest was Britain’s most famous representative winger Billy Boston with 571 tries.

As for statistics, get a load of these figures, and remember the English competition was pretty good between WW2 and the early 1960s. Bevan scored:
 seven tires in a match twice;
 six tries in a match four times;
 five tries in a match six times; and
 four tries in a match twenty times.
Bevan scored 66 hat-tricks in single matches for Warrington and 100 hat-tricks in a first class career.

What was it about Bevan that made him so good ? Firstly, he was fast. Bevan was the U/12 NSW sprint champion, and like many gifted sportsman he was good at other sports, including cricket. Bevan had the full compliment of winger’s skills including swerves, steps off either foot, a jinking running style and as preparedness to back himself against a whole team. Stories of Bevan’s great tries are the stuff of legend, beating whole teams on 100 plus yard runs, tries that went from corner to corner – not just your average outflanking on the sideline. He is supposed to have beaten an entire team twice in one memorable try. Some reports have him able to run backwards faster than many players ran forwards and he was prepared to dance, weave and crab around the field to get away from and past the opposition.

It is simple and clear. Bevan outstripped and continues to overawe the try-scoring feats of every generation. He is renowned for his brilliance and winger’s magic. We all know about Laurie Daly’s statue at Canberra, and King Wally’s statue at Brisbane, well Bevan not only has a statue on his own island (well round-about traffic island…) in the Warrington Causeway !

Refs: Wales Rugby League, BBC Sports, Warrington Wolves RLFC, various small rugby league sites (four)

570 words


Tamazoid 7.9

Shows depth of understanding of Players in Rugby League currently. Opinionated and informative. Some statements could have been expanded on, but of course there is a word limit.

The Bags

Willow 9.2

Extremely well researched and a well-written article, suitable for publication. All Rugby League Fans would find this interesting and I hope that his family has the opportunity to read this.

Moffo 8.8

Well balanced drawing relevant analysis between past and present players from both teams. A depth of knowledge expanding many years, shown and backed up with illustration. The restrictions of the word limit certainly hamper the ability to develop your theme, however you succinctly touched on many issues that this game brings forward. All Rugby League lovers would concur with your sentiments, regardless of the team they support.

Gorilla 9.3

In my opinion this is the type of article that the Forum 7’s Competition is about. It is articulate, factual and while opinionated, the opinions are backed, with research. It would serve well, any young man looking for a role model in RL to read this type of article.

GBT 7.6

Would have loved for you to expand more on your opinions GBT, ie as in why the Fax admin could not involve themselves in a rort. A very controversial and much discussed topic, which was well written. Only lacking in supporting your opinions with back up statements. Current, newsworthy and very well written.

Hass 9.1

Hass, what an insightful article. Not only was it informative, accurate and well written, it actually makes one think. The restriction of the number of imports is a viable solution. It would have been interesting to look at other alternatives to keeping the Australian Players within our competition as well.

Cronulla 7.9
The Bags 44.0

MOM Gorilla.

The Penelope Pittstop Encouragement Award goes to GBT, for a very good article that would have scored much higher if expanded on.

Also The Bags shout Tamazoid a beer each, a great article and hopefully you can build your team, as I know that you have a quality side.


Too kind, Ms Pittstop, thank you. =D>
Thanks ball girls. ;-)
Thanks MoFo for the run, started to get a little out of breath near the end – what an impact/off-the-bench-and-wall player !! \\:D/
Well done Tamazoid, I enjoyed your piece. :)
Well done Bagaroonies ! :lol:
Willow, hurry up and tap that keg ! :twisted:

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