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Round 7: Newtown Vs Souths

Discussion in 'Forum Sevens Matches' started by Mr BuLLdOgS, Jul 21, 2003.

  1. Mr BuLLdOgS

    Mr BuLLdOgS Juniors

    May 22, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Newtown Vs Souths

    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 30th July, 2003. 9:00PM AEST

    Referee: Penelope Pittstop
  2. Seano

    Seano Juniors

    May 28, 2003
    Likes Received:
    The Souths team is as follows:

    1. Seano (c)
    2. RedDragon
    3. Terracesider
    4. Bunny Boy
    5. Olympic Park


    Good luck to both teams!
  3. Moffo

    Moffo Referee

    May 27, 2003
    Likes Received:
    1.Moffo (c)
    2. Hass (vc)
    3. Willow
    4. Roopy
    5. Gorilla

    6. Legend
    7. Bronco, aka Salivor

    **Team subject to alcohol - amongst other things** :lol:

  4. Anonymous

    Anonymous Juniors

    May 19, 2003
    Likes Received:
    *Willow for the Bluebags*

    The poisoning of Bobby Lulham

    The poisoning of Rugby League star Bobby Lulham in the 1950s had all the ingredients of a modern soap opera. Drugs, scandal, infidelity, passion, murder, suicide, tragedy and rat plagues… what more could you ask for?

    Many people today point to crime rate figures and the recent decline on moral values as contributing factors in an ever increasing heartless world. It's interesting to note that the so-called 'Good old days' of the 1950s were indeed a different picture to what is often painted today.

    With soldiers returning from war, much of Sydney was in disarray. Often suffering from untreated post-war trauma, many soldiers hadn't seen their families for years. In many cases, they were disorientated and disillusioned strangers. Housing conditions were often over-crowded and Sydney town was in a health crisis as a rat plague took over the inner-city. So bad were the rats that they soon spread into the west with homes as far out as Strathfield being affected.

    The government finally decided to make available the deadly rat poison known as Thallium Sulphate. So powerful was Thallium that it killed both the rats as well as other rats that ate the poisoned corpse.

    An outstanding Rugby League winger, Bobby Lulham played 87 games for Balmain between 1947-1953 scoring 85 tries and kicking 45 goals. He represented New South Wales from 1947-1949 and Australia from 1948-1949. Very fast off the mark and possessing a deceptive step off either foot, Lulham was immensely popular with supporters. In 1947, he scored a record 28 tries for Balmain and played in the winning Grand Final side of that year. A sporting hero and a household name in post-war Sydney, Bobby Lulham had the world at his feet.

    But as the 1950s loomed, the community issues of the day hit the Lulham household. In 1952, Bobby experienced a sudden drop in form. No longer did he possess his amazing turn of speed and he soon became a target for opposing flankers as he seemingly forgot how to tackle. Lulham was playing so bad in one match that he simply walked off leaving his team a player short. The crowd that had once cheered his every movement was now booing as he sauntered towards the sideline. He was later taken to hospital.

    What the fans didn't know was that Bobby Lulham was a victim of Thallium poisoning.

    Since restrictions were lifted on its use, Thallium was doing its job containing the rat plague. But it had also become a popular drug to poison people. Thallium Sulphate was odourless, tasteless but above all, lethal. It could easily be added to food or drink. The first case came to court in 1952 and with that, the newspapers printed the symptoms of Thallium poisoning. These included lethargy, nausea and loss of hair. Following publication in the daily press, it wasn't long before others started coming forward with claims of Thallium poisoning which, by now, had become the preferred poison for women trying to rid themselves of troublesome husbands. With no real network of support for victims of domestic violence and virtually no social acceptance for disenfranchised men, Thallium soon became an easy solution to many a household problem.

    Very few Rugby League supporters knew that Bobby Lulham was having problems at home. As was typical at the time, Bobby lived with his wife and her mother. Almost no one knew that he was having affair with his mother-in-law, Veronica Monty while his wife, Judy was at Sunday Mass!

    But it wasn't Judy that turned on her husband. Following an anonymous tip-off, Veronica was charged with poisoning her lover and son-in-law. In the celebrity court case that followed, it was revealed that Bobby had been poisoned after drinking some of Veronica's 'Thallium tea.'

    Charged with attempted murder, Veronica was eventually acquitted after she claimed that the poison was meant for herself. She testified that she couldn't live with her deception any longer and wanted to end her life. She claimed that Bobby had taken the poison 'by accident.' Despite a skeptical public, the court ruled in Veronica’s favour. But in a tragic and final twist, Veronica Monty committed suicide in 1955.

    Following a number of well publicised murders, Thallium was placed back on the banned poisons list in 1954.

    Bobby Lulham meanwhile made a full recovery and played one more season with Balmain in 1953. He eventually passed away in 1986.

    *738 words including title (not including words between *)
    Ref., player stats: The Encyclopedia of Rugby League Players.*
  5. terracesider

    terracesider Juniors

    May 29, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Terracesider: No. 7 - Souths

    Wigan's Bid For Mark Gasnier.

    Throughout the first half of July, 2003, claim and counter-claim pinged around the globe as controversy raged over the possible transfer to Wigan of Mark Gasnier, the St George-Illawarra Dragons' centre. This post outlines that controversy and briefly considers some of its implications for both the NRL and the RFL.

    On 29 April, 2003 the Superleague site reported that Maurice Lindsay, the Wigan chairman, had targeted Gasnier as part of his future team-building plans.[1] Lindsay played down the story, saying that that no decisions had made yet about recruitment for 2004 and he had not spoken either to Gasnier or to his agent, George Mimis. In Australia, Peter Doust, Dragons' chief executive, said he was currently working on an improved contract with Gasnier, who still had two years left of his existing contract.[2] Gasnier said that although Mimis was currently in England, if there had been an offer from Wigan he was not aware of it and in fact he was close to finalising the renegotiated contract with the Dragons.[3] The issue then faded until early July, when reports began to emerge of an offer from Wigan to Gasnier. The precise sum involved is open to doubt but according various UK press reports it was somewhere between £170,000 (ca. $415,000) a year for four years (League Weekly, 7 July) and £1.5m (ca. $3.7m ) over four years (League Weekly, 14 July); the Australian press consistently put the offer that $900,000 (£370,000) over four years.

    From the start, Gasnier was probably never in favour of a move to Wigan, not least because playing abroad would have excluded him from selection for the Australian national side. Gasnier's disinclination is almost certainly why Lindsay planned to fly out to Australia in the third week of July, in "...a "last ditch attempt" to clinch a deal. According to a Mimis, Gasnier was expected to pay Lindsay "the courtesy of listening to what he has to say" before making a final decision on his future and Gasnier perhaps diplomatically said that it was "a tough call", which he would have to discuss with his family before making a final decision. [4]

    As the Australian media whipped itself into an increasing frenzy at the prospect of losing one of its most promising young players, Lindsay suddenly withdrew the proposed deal, saying that Wigan could not have possibly paid the sums mentioned within the UK salary cap, which is effectively £1.8m ($4.4m) per annum. He complained that Mimis had been using his bid merely to raise Gasnier's offer from the Dragons,[5] and that "Perhaps suggesting that Wigan were prepared to pay a high sum helped to improve negotiations in Australia. We will not be part of that game. It is not the first time that we have been mentioned in this way by a particular agent in Australia."[6] Possibly this tirade was intended to disguise Lindsay's embarrassment at being outwitted by Mimis in the sort of transfer games he is notorious for playing with other clubs in GB.

    From an administrator's perspective, it is arguable that Mimis was disgracefully using Wigan's interest in Gasnier solely as a lever to prise a better deal out of the Dragons within the constraints of the salary cap. Naturally, other clubs are worried about the affairs' wider implications. Wigan's next target is Brisbane Bronco's Michael De Vere, and as Bruno Cullen, Bronco's chief executive has said, "Take a line through Wigan and Gasnier - there's a lot of money there. Now whether that relates to what they might offer Michael if they're going to offer him anything is another thing. That would be scary, because again we couldn't come anywhere near matching that."[8] Indeed, such concerns appear to underpin the NRL's proposals to introduce a licensing scheme for players' agents, so that they can exercise some control over them.[9] Alternatively, from a player's perspective, it could be argued that Mimis was only doing his job and quite properly seeking to maximise his client's income in a market in which wages have been depressed by the salary cap. Whichever view one takes, the central issue is the salary cap which, whatever its benefits, does impose a perhaps sometimes dysfunctional financial discipline on clubs. Either way, it is possibly time to review the workings of the salary cap, in order to evaluate precisely its effects.

    [1] http://www.superleague.co.uk/article.asp?artid=144143

    [2] http://www.superleague.co.uk/article.asp?artid=144302

    [3] http://www3.nrl.com.au/news.cfm?ArticleID=6152

    [4] http://au.sports.yahoo.com/030712/1/jjdk.html

    [5] http://www.couriermail.news.com.au/common/story_page/0,5936,6758634%5E23214,00.html

    [6] http://foxsports.news.com.au/story/0,8659,6758634-23214,00.html

    [7] http://www3.nrl.com.au/news.cfm?ArticleID=6164&TeamID=5

    [8] http://www.abc.net.au/sport/content/s905191.htm

    [9] http://www3.nrl.com.au/news.cfm?ArticleID=6164&TeamID=5

    747 words
  6. Moffo

    Moffo Referee

    May 27, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Moffo returning for the bags!!

    Selling The Drama at NRL Creek

    To those with a background in 90’s rock, the title will be instantly familiar. But in singing the song last night (in my best Ed Kowalcyzk voice of course), I wondered to myself, how can the NRL identify with the song?

    Let’s face it, the NRL has the product. They have a game that Rupert Murdoch thought was good enough to sell to the world. Now whether you agreed with the ideals of Super League is an entirely different matter. The fact remained that one of the biggest media tycoons of all time considered the rugby league product good enough to take to the people, from Beijing to Bangkok, Manila to Mauritius; they were all going to have a rugby league team

    Now let’s just push aside for a moment what actually happened ;)

    I go to plenty of league games. Fifteen to twenty most years to be exact. And I do love each and every game. However, I do get the feeling at times that some of the games are not hyped and promoted in the right ways. Nothing consolidated that feeling more for me then when on Sunday, the only recognition that we got that Hazem El-Masri had amassed 500 points for the Bulldogs was a quick 5 second announcement over the PA. In comparison, a 200 game player in the AFL will usually be chaired off the field. Not to mention the pre-game hype surrounding the milestone

    I wrote about a similar issue last year when Luke Ricketson broke the Roosters record for most games played at the club. A paltry 9,000 turned up and no one gave a tinkers toss. It’s pathetic, and I feel the same as I sit here typing this again

    Why can’t the NRL make every game an ‘event’?? What prohibits them (and the clubs for that matter) from hyping up every game and making the contest to look important and in following, make people want to attend? Once again, I turn to the AFL who promote many of their games through a variety of means, including indigenous days and kid’s days.

    Going to some games can be painful for those who are not hardcore fans. Why would have anyone wanted to go watch the Cowboys play the Dogs on a cold Sunday afternoon at the Showgrounds? Do they wonder why they barely got 7,000? But the situation can be applied to any club at any time; we all know that each club has had their encounters with poor crowds through the years.

    Solution? Well, being the solutions man that I am, I can only really see one. The clubs say that reducing the number of club games to 22 will result in reduced revenue. I say rubbish. If an NRL club budgets for a net of 120,000 people through the gates for a year (10,000 per game on a 24 round basis + 2 byes) then what would the difference be if they only played 10 games at home? 12,000….a paltry increase of 2,000 people per game. I firmly believe that a 22 round home and away season would promote more excitement in rugby league and as a result, more people through the gates. Each game would be an event.

    Add to this the fact that it would give players more rest (as Joey has mentioned) and it would give time for a more complete international season to be run at the completion of the year without interference from club games. The recent test results involving the British and Kiwis indicate that running test games during the year is not the way to go.

    My arguments have developed from many incidents, and with only 750 words, the topics can scarcely be covered. But the fact remains that something needs to be done about the great ‘slide in crowds’ that regularly happens year after year come round 14-20. The AFL can do it, most other codes can do it, why can’t we keep up the interest for the whole year?

    Make no mistake; we still have the best core product. But it’s how we promote our product that still causes me a lot of concern. Davy Gallop, if your listening, it’s time to turn the promotion up a notch for 2K4, try a few different things, stir the pot. We live in dynamic times, the stagnant get left behind.

    Give people a reason to go every week!

  7. Seano

    Seano Juniors

    May 28, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Seano - Captain of the Mighty South Sydney Rabbitohs

    A Great Season

    The season of 2003 was greeted with great optimism amongst the South Sydney faithful. For the first time in a long time we had something to really look forward too on the football field (excluding, of course, our memorable return to the league). It was a season which promised so much, however with most of it gone, the South Sydney faithful have been disappointed yet again. A large build up of quality footballers was ruined by a year of political infighting, coaching dramas and a season which delivered very few wins.

    The build up of player talent for the NRL season 2003 was supposed to lift South Sydney away from the doldrums of Rugby League. Players of the quality such as Bryan Fletcher, Justin Smith, Ashley Harrison, and lastly (and leastly) Chris Walker, were supposed to herald a new age at South Sydney which would supply the long suffering South Sydney fans with a season to match the optimism in their hearts. However, instead of a great season the South Sydney fans were treated to a year to forget…again.

    There have been quite a few games this season where South Sydney should of recorded victories. However, this is quite irrelevant. The fact of the matter is that South Sydney have only won a whole two NRL competition games all year, and apart from a limited success at the World Sevens Tournament in February the supporters have had very little to cheer about. The team has let slip wins against the Broncos, Penrith, St George Illawarra, and have been in the game up until the final whistle in countless more.

    There are questions that most certainly need to be asked! It seems that as the season progresses the fitness of the team continues to decline - this can be clearly seen in so much that the team is in the game up until half time, however they tend to fade badly as the game continues. Is the team being trained to a level that is representative of an NRL team? Ricky Stuart surely did not seem to think so in his comments after Chris Walker’s walkout earlier in the season.

    It seems that come July or August every year, South Sydney fans stare ahead to next season for a sense of optimism. This year however, has not delivered the “success” in the player market which last year gave. Despite the obvious need for a decent halfback in the team, the recruitment panel of David Tapp and Paul Langmack has decided to sign a relatively unproven youngster in Dean Byrne.

    It was the decision of the previous board to sign the unproven rookie coach Paul langmack to a three year contract before the political dramas which resulted in the board being (somewhat) replaced. It could be reasoned that this was done to try to emulate some of the success which Ricky Stuart has achieved at the Sydney Roosters. However, what seems to not make sense is why George Piggins and his board did not at least appoint Langmack a more experienced deputy from which he could learn his trade – much like Ricky Stuart had with Phil Gould at the Roosters.

    However, this is not an article to belittle the efforts of George Piggins and his board in their efforts to restore South Sydney to the top of the NRL. However, with Paul Langmacks current efforts as a coach standing at a measly 2 wins and 17 losses, for a winning percentage standing barely over 10%, questions must surely be asked.

    These questions it seems, may be being asked – with some doubt being placed over his future as the head coach of South Sydney. There are many South Sydney fans who believe that Paul Langmack could be a successful first grade NRL coach one day, however, many believe that he is not the man to lead South Sydney in their quest up the ladder.

    So as it stands, South Sydney are a club that are in a load of trouble. With a rookie coach and under-performing team, it is going to take a lot of hard work and discipline to restore South Sydney to be a dominant force in the NRL competition any time soon. However, the fans of South Sydney, in my opinion, deserve any effort to be made for the change. These same fans have sat in the stands and watched their team win only seven games in two years and this is clearly not acceptable.

    Word Count: 748 including title
  8. olympic park

    olympic park Juniors

    May 29, 2003
    Likes Received:
    By Olympic Park #10

    We have had some top-class matches of rugby league played over the last few months - namely State of Origin and the International Test matches. Unfortunately these matches have been played in the heart of rugby league in Australia - Sydney and Brisbane. These have attracted bumper crowds, but in order for the game of rugby league to grow in this country beyond the northern states where it is currently played, it would seem that now is the right time to try to show internationals in the expanding regions of Australia, particularly Melbourne.

    Melbourne has the perfect recipe that a titanic clash such as an international match needs - add one sport-crazy city with a choice of two first-rate stadiums (which hold 55,000 and 90,000 people respectively), mix in the emergence factor and you’ve got a winner. Other codes have proven that Melbourne is a top market for international matches - soccer internationals at the Melbourne Cricket Ground regularly have over 70,000 people, and the last rugby union test against England at Telstra Dome pulled in 55,000 people - even the local football code has never pulled that many people into the stadium!

    The emergence factor plays an important role in the mix - the Melbourne Storm rugby league brigade work tirelessly to ensure that rugby league is seen in and around Melbourne and various parts of regional Victoria - and contrary to what the AFL would like to believe, a great deal of Aussie rules supporters (after watching their own code) going home on the same tram or train as Storm supporters will come up and have a chat to see how the Storm has gone. Unfortunately with the pressures of the media being part-owned and run in Melbourne by the AFL, they have the ability to try to shut out the other football codes, particularly rugby league, as much as they can.

    This would significantly change though if a match of an international level was played in Melbourne. It would boost the code enormously. Melbournians (and Victorians in general) are extremely patriotic when it comes to sport, and the void left with the fact that State of Origin is no longer played with Aussie Rules and as the code is a local one which never took off around the world, Melbournians would love to see an international match played in their own backyard. There is absolutely no doubt about it – as one foreign journalist wrote: “Melbournians are that sports crazy they would go to watch two flies crawling up a wall”.

    Rugby league is doing its best to try to get a foot hold into Melbourne and this could be the best way. Australia versus New Zealand - the arch enemy - would ensure a great crowd. Make sure that at least a few players from the Melbourne Storm are in the team so it generates a lot of interest around the media, and it would make for a great night. And add to this the glitz of the opening of a rugby league match which is something completely different to what most Melbournians are used to and this would prove most entertaining. AFL has nothing - no music, fireworks, cheer girls… they don’t even sing the national anthem at most matches! But how do we ensure that a match could be played in the future?

    Obviously a 3-match series is the way to go in the future. The Australian whitewash of the previous two single-test series between Great Britain (last year) and New Zealand (this year) show that a minimum of 3 matches should be played. Play one in Brisbane or Sydney (established league cities in Australia), one in Auckland or Wellington (established league cities in New Zealand) and then one in an emerging region - Melbourne or even North Queensland come to mind for this. You couldn’t say that this sort of clash wouldn’t attract interest both Australia-wide and across the Tasman, and possibly even overseas. Then the year after, allow the Kiwis to have their third match played in an ‘emerging’ area, such as on the South Island.

    It has the potential to become something big and remain that way for many years to come... let’s hope that the NRL has the envisagement that this sort of thing can happen in the near future!

    WORD COUNT: 726 Words
  9. Collateral

    Collateral Coach

    May 23, 2003
    Likes Received:
    *RedDragon #9 South Sydney Rabbitohs

    Before You walk out onto that Field

    What goes through your head before you walk or used to walk onto that Field of dreams?

    There are a few groups that people fall into when it comes to building up for a game, from a week before the game, to the pre-game team warm up 20 minutes before the game.

    Group 1
    There is the group that many people fall into such as: Luke Bailey, Mark Carroll and myself. This group is for the people who’s nerves start up a few days before the game and dread playing all week. The very thought of playing makes you go all tingling.
    Game day is when this gets magnified by about a hundred. Luke Bailey shakes and madly bites his finger nails and Mark ‘spud’ Carroll threw up before all of his games. I am a bit of both really. I am naturally a quiet person and try to stay out of the spotlight. On game day however, I will hardly talk at all to anyone. I begin sweating before I leave to play and my stomach starts to feel sick. This goes through right until about 2minutes before we run onto the field. Luke Bailey needs to take a hit-up before his nerves settle.

    Group 2
    There is a group that is quite happy top be playing football and don’t get nervous unless it is a big game. These people are generally very happy people and don’t mind having a joke and chat before the game.
    However these people feel groups one’s symptoms in full wrath before big games. You can really tell they are nervous about the game, whereas the group one people don’t get any more or less nervous then normal.
    The Group two relaxed people really don’t mind whether they start on the bench or on the field. They play their best and nerves aren’t really apart of their game.

    Group 3
    Group three are the extreme opposite of group one. They have nothing to worry about and are generally people that have been playing the game since a very young age.
    They warm-up and go onto the field at full throttle, leading the way in aggression for the rest of the team.
    In most cases these people love playing football to crunch people in tackles and some go out there with their minds set on smashing someone.
    Obviously these people are very noticeable when playing as they are the ones that will being going 100% in every situation.
    This group of footballers are confident in everything they do and know what they are doing.

    Being in group one, I can tell you, is the least fun of these groups. This doesn’t mean they are the worst footballers by any means though. For many people it is the nerves that make them play well.
    Luke Bailey is a definite Group one player yet he is arguably in the top 4 Props in the world.

    Group two naturally have nothing to be ashamed of either. This is the group where a Captain is most likely to be chosen from. They are the nice guys that get along with everyone, and like groups two and three, they are also very capable footballers. They are the people who are normally ever faithful to their team, and their teammates.

    Group three players can sometimes be seen as arrogant and too aggressive. Some say they need to settle down and not try to go out and hurt people. However this is what makes this group powerful. They are so confident that they know what they are doing and what they are capable of from a very early age.

    However, my cousin told me something that made a lot of sense. He was a great footballer and would of gone on to great things if he had not got bored of the game, and he is mates with many first grade players today that he grew up with. Anyway, he said that all these aggressive players are normally the bigger, stronger players from a younger age. They dominate the junior ranks because of their size, but once they hit first grade, they get knocked off their high horse. The NRL is friendly to nobody and these Big, strong players meet their match in top grade that they had not met in groups their age. Therefore, they can be destined to fail. Their superior confidence which they once had, is now gone.

    Which group are you?

    Word Count 750
    Including Title
  10. Hass

    Hass Juniors

    May 24, 2003
    Likes Received:
    * Hass * Bluebags *


    When I was a young lad gallivanting around in the backyard I had plenty of dreams that I liked to act out. When we were playing cricket I dreamt of being in the Aussie team wearing the baggy green. When we were having races in the pool I dreamt of representing Australia at the Olympics. When it rained and we headed inside to play table tennis I loved to think that I was a member of the Davis Cup team. And when we kicked the footy around the yard playing Rugby League with “Grab 1-2-3” rules (or tackle when our parents weren’t watching) – well, I dreamed I was touring for the Kangaroos.

    Thousands, nay hundreds of thousands of kids still pull out a Steeden and exult in the wonder of playing Rugby League in the backyard. They pretend to be Johns or Lockyer or Willie Mason’s hair. They act out memorable State of Origin clashes – with the owner of the footy the only person assured of not having to play for the Canetoads. I’m sure that in Queensland it would be the other way around – with kids trying to avoid playing for the Blues. They line up kicks at goal over the pool fence, and pretend that they are to win the Grand Final. They attempt banana kicks at any time of the match and imitate their favourite player’s post-try celebration when it brings them success.

    However when I see the kids playing (and trust me, between cousins and nephews and those ratbags from the house next door, I’m around more kids then I would ever consider healthy), kicking the footy around, they never seem to want to be the Kangaroos. You see, all these dreams are a result of children’s imagination and the Australian Rugby League team doesn’t seem quite able to capture the imagination of anybody.

    It’s not that they aren’t skilful. Heck, Andrew Johns, Darren Lockyer and Willie Mason’s hair all appear in the one team – all the kid’s idols strutting their stuff in the one team. Kids should be leaping out of their footy socks to make believe they are Kangaroos. Yet that’s not the way it is at the moment. International Rugby League is struggling… but it doesn’t have to be this way.

    I watched the pre-match build up to the two “Rugby” tests this weekend just past. In only one of them did I feel like I was watching a fair dinkum, full blown, passionate international match. In the Rugby League the National Anthems played over and I watched as the camera panned over the lips of the players singing the national anthem. I use the word ‘singing’ very lightly. Mumbling would be more apt, and even with that qualification there were still only four or five participating. I think a couple looked like they were actually making an effort to sing it. When it comes to inspiring me this does very little.

    Conversely, at the Bledisloe Cup on Saturday I counted only three players out of the twenty-two Wallabies who were not singing the National Anthem. In fact, of the nineteen people moving their lips it would be fair to say that about eighteen of them looked as though they were singing for their lives. It was uplifting stuff – the kind of stuff that makes you proud to be an Australian. Even looking at the New Zealanders – the All Blacks Haka looked slick and fearsome, whereas the Kiwis Haka looked tired and amateurish.

    I felt that it provided me with a symbol for everything that is wrong with International Rugby League – that despite having been professional for nigh on one hundred years, the game still appears to be amateurish. Haphazard scheduling, aborted tours, meaningless Internationals, non-existent promotion – you wouldn’t know that it was being organised at all. And it is such a shame, because international Rugby League has a great history behind it. Kangaroos and Lions tours filled with controversy and memorable moments. The upsets performed by New Zealand and the flair of countless French touring sides.

    In 1995 Rugby Union went professional. We thought that Rugby League had done it a century earlier. Yet we might have now learned that there is a difference between simply paying player’s money and doing things professionally. Perhaps it is time to we entered the twenty-first century and shed our amateur roots… and make sure that this time, we do it properly.

    - 741 Words

    Cheers, and good luck to both sides.
  11. gorilla

    gorilla Guest

    One of the “old school gorillas”
    for the Bags

    League’s Frankensteins ?

    In the last few decades there’s been significant changes to the rugby league forward body type. The extent of change is best shown by comparisons with a very similar code that retains the emphasis on a more natural body shape and type – rugby union.

    I think its safe to say that the changes on body type in rugby league forwards is the result of sports science and club selection policies for body types rather than a broader and acknowledged change to the human body that has resulted from improved nutrition and health services over the last century.

    Prior to the introduction of sports science and focussed selection and youth development policies in rugby league (and I suggest we are generally talking about before the 1970s), there was not a great deal of difference between the shared forward positions between rugby league and union. Forgetting the break-aways (or ‘loose forwards’ as they are unfortunately named) in union, the props, hooker, second rowers and locks in both rugby league and union generally had similar body types and shapes. This is patently not the case now.

    Rugby union still retains many features of the various forward body types and shapes that were common to both codes. They still have props like elephants, hookers like rhinos, second rowers like giraffes on steroids and locks like cheetahs. To continue the analogy, I suppose the breakaways are like hyenas, scavenging at the ‘kill’ and running down the prey.

    Rugby league props used to be squat and powerful on the blindside, taller and strong on the open side (if you wonder why – ask an older fan who remembers the need to feed and contest a scrum). The hookers were also generally squat or short, a bit nuggetty – their most important function was the fit between props and ‘hook’ the ball in the scrum. Second rowers tended to be a bit more rangy and taller than the props with the locks perhaps the least changed from the current day.

    What we see as today’s rugby league forward is a much more homogenised body type and shape, with the predominant difference between all the forwards being the hooker’s shape and body type. This homogenisation of body type and shape for most of the forwards is the result of the nature of the modern game (rules, philosophy and tactics) ruling the selection and youth development policies of clubs, and the use of sports science influencing how bodies are shaped and developed once a type is selected.

    The obvious differences between the past and the present body shapes and types are found in the hookers and props. Changes to scrummaging and ruck/dummy half play are the most influential factors, The modern hooker is essentially a ruck half-back with the responsibility to clear the ball, make bursts from the ruck when markers tire or are slow to defend, and defend where his capabilities are best suited. The past hooker had to waddle to a scrum and win the ball, do a bit of support play and defend in the front line. Props aren’t selected today because they can grapple in a scrum, or hold up the entrance and fight with the hooker for the ball (I was myself an open side prop and used to relish the challenge of working with the hooker against the opposite front row – test of strength and all that). Today’s prop is selected and trained to make 8 to 15 metres, get up off the ground and make a quick play-the-ball at the ruck. The overall emphasis on bigger, faster and stronger players has resulted in a certain range of body types and shapes being desirable.

    One thing has become noticeable, particularly when compared with the rugby union forwards, and that is the increasing similarity between the body types of most rugby league forwards except for the hookers. The hookers tend to all look the same however. Today’s forwards tend to be big, fast and mobile – the game’s gorillas. The recent emphasis by the Australian selectors on these types of forwards, starting with Bob Fulton’s reign as Australian coach, is the epitome of this movement toward this generally desirable body type and shape. The reliance on science and selection, coupled with the demands and tactics of the modern game has resulted in a ‘standard’ body shape and type, albeit within some variations and limits, e.g: Luke Bailey, and Shane Webke.

    737 words between the *********************
  12. Bunny Boy

    Bunny Boy Juniors

    May 29, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Bunny Boy for the Rabbitohs......

    An ode to South Sydney………

    It’s been a long time for the red and green
    Since 1989 the semis we’ve not seen.
    The fans are left ruing what has gone wrong
    The old Glory Glory is just another song.

    For mighty Clive Churchill would be fuming with hate,
    Because his beloved footy team, is no longer so great.
    The sixties and seventies are merely a dream,
    All we no of now, is a wooden spoon team.

    Year after year we are constantly fed,
    Of mediocre performances, and players we dread.
    We lose all our juniors, there all classy acts,
    Then we buy rejects, and we question the facts!

    Why are we moving so slowly these days?
    Why are our players, constantly left in a daze?
    Why is our team the constant laughing stock?
    There always laughing at us, and continue to mock.

    Is there any light at the end of the tunnel?
    Will we soon see, a Souths winning huddle.
    Or will we continue to lose and come last,
    And just watch old videos and live in the past.

    Something needs changing; I dunno what it be,
    Maybe it’s the coach, the players, or perhaps Tappy.
    Whatever it is, I want changes soon,
    I’m sick of coming last; I don’t want the dreaded spoon.

    The fans deserve more, weve stuck all this way,
    Give us our team, who prides in their play.
    Give us a team who will play like Sattler,
    When the chips were down he was our battler !

    Give us a team who will write history,
    Give us a team who will end this misery.
    Were not asking for premierships, not yet twenty one,
    We just want some passion, when the game is said and done.

    The red and green faithful will stick solid and true,
    Forever and ever we will follow you,
    But give us a glimpse, some sort of shining light,
    That youll play for the pride, and continue to fight.

    Now Langers this season is over and done,
    And weve never been further from premiership twenty one.
    But now it is up to you and your crew,
    To bring us back to those semis we rue.

    Were not asking for much, as we wipe away these tears,
    But weve waited so long, its been 13 bloody years.
    Cant you get them up and raring to go,
    Playing for that jersey making history as we go.

    Tell them of players that have played in the past,
    Tell them their jersey, will always bloody last.
    They are playing for the greatest ever footy team,
    Theyre playing for the pride who wear red and green.

    Sattler, Chuchill, Sait and co,
    They are household names wherever they go.
    Tell them to play, like they’re reaching for stars,
    Because the life of footballer doesn’t last.

    Why cant those days, just come back tommorrow,
    When the mighty red and green jump out of their burrow.
    Out they jump and onto the field,
    Scoring tries all over, and the trophy they yield.

    Im still a young lad, all I remember is we lose,
    At this bloody rate im going to hit the booze.
    Its hard to maintain love when the pain has been long,
    But my blood is red and green and my rabbit skin strong.

    Ill never desert you, ill never back away,
    But lets start against the Dogs, at Aussie this Sunday.
    Show us your courage, show us your pride,
    Show us you want to play for our great side.

    Hold your heads high, and remember those names,
    The stars who wore those before you, in glorious games.
    Reach the highest mountain, climb to the top,
    And when you get there, hold the Souths flag aloft.

    And if your ever going to get to this day,
    If this premiership glory ever comes our way.
    This promise to you, it will never end,
    Forever and a day youll be a Rabbitoh legend.

    I just hope this day will come very soon,
    And I promise that week ill be on a constant goon.
    Let it bloody happen before I pass away,
    And we will sing you a song forever and a day.

    Don’t worry Sir Clive, im sure your watching us,
    And instilling some pride, in our players guts.
    And when we reach that elusive twenty one,
    Youll be on our minds, when the premiership is won !
  13. roopy

    roopy Referee

    May 24, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Roopy for the Bluebags

    An exciting finish for the American season in store.

    The American season moves into the finals stage next week and the thing that stands out from the season is that nearly all teams have made considerable improvements during this year. Game after game this year have been described as the best ever game to be played in the US. It seems that new levels of skill and excitement are being reached with every passing round.
    Many of the teams have included players who have been recruited overseas for the first time this season, which has led to a general rise in standards of both training and play. The newly formed Wildcats led the way with recruiting by signing up two Australian adventurers from the French division one, Ben Kelly (ex Manly) and ‘Sir Lawrence’ Raleigh (ex Saints) and also a few players from New South Wales country teams. The next team to score an overseas player were the Bulls who signed up Marcus Vassilacopulous who was a player with American roots playing in England. The Sharks re signed their Australian coach but were also able to pick up a French player from Division one, Joe Da Costa, as well as sending their captain, Phil Shippos, to spend a few months learning the game with a country side in NSW. The other new side, Washington DC Slayers, found several Kiwis living in the US with League experience to fill out their ranks. The New York Knights sprung the surprise of the off season by signing up Greg Wells, who is a Union player who had been in both the Waratahs and Brumbies squads at different times, but also has a League background as well.
    The season started with big clashes between the Wildcats and the Knights, one in Connecticut and one in New York. The games between these two rival clubs (the Wildcats were formed when many of the Knights players wanted to set up their own club) set the tone for the season, with the clashes being hailed as taking the game to a new level in the US right from the start of the season. The Wildcats won those early encounters and went on to win every regular season game till the very last of the season, when they were rolled by the Bulls who had pulled off a coup in player recruitment. The Bulls had gained the services of three of the players from their sister club’s, the Bulldogs, Jersey Flegg title winning team. The three 18 year olds from Canterbury scored 5 of the seven tries scored by the Bulls in their narrow win over the Wildcats.
    The Bulls and Wildcats look to be the strongest teams at the moment, but both sides have had only narrow wins over the fast improving New Jersey Sharks, who are showing the benefits of their second season under a coach with a level three coaching ticket and considerable experience in country NSW.
    The New York Knights have also been there or thereabouts all season and have used every opportunity to blood new players and experiment with the large pool of players they can call upon from the five Rugby Union sides that act as feeder clubs for their team.
    The real dark horses of the finals series are the other new side, the Washington DC
    Slayers. This side has had some good results when they play in Washington, but they have forfeited on several occasions when asked to travel. They showed last week that they are now getting serious by defeating the Media Mantarays by 50 points, which is good form in anyone’s book.
    The finals series promises game after game of high standard Rugby League, culminating in the grand final which should be between the Wildcats and the Bulls, barring any outstanding performances by the other sides who are still in the race. The expected grand final will feature about two thirds of the Tomahawk squad as well as eight players who have played at a professional or semi-professional level in England, Australia and New Zealand.
    The American game started five years ago with a group of Union players who wanted to play League in the off season to keep fit. The fact that they will have a grand final this year that would be of equal standard to most of the better comps in country League is a credit to them.
  14. Seano

    Seano Juniors

    May 28, 2003
    Likes Received:
    well another great game with a full complement.

    Good luck to both teams and hopefully well know who the victor is shortly!!

    ** heres hoping **
  15. Anonymous

    Anonymous Juniors

    May 19, 2003
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    Great posts everyone. Thanks to all players for taking the field in a 5v5.
    Thanks in advance to the referee who looks to have some work to do.
  16. ozzie

    ozzie Bench

    May 23, 2003
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  17. Penelope Pittstop

    Penelope Pittstop Bench

    May 22, 2003
    Likes Received:
    Let me start by saying this was a wonderful round to ref with an amazingly high standard.


    WILLOW 9.5

    Willow, a brilliant article. Extremely well written, witty and interesting. I reckon she was guilty!!

    MOFFO 8.7

    90's rock Man, you make it sound like it's old or something :}. The NRL do need to promote games more. Shame you were restricted by the word count.

    HASS 8.9

    Thoughly enjoyable read, a great mix of humour, truth and a bloody good idea. Well Done!!

    GORILLA 9.6

    I was recently looking at old photo's and was interested to note the body shape change. Originality, well written and researched.

    ROOPY 8.3

    I have always expected the yanks to take to the game, so it's good to hear that the quality of football is improving. Informative Article.



    Another great article. Very well researched and of current interest. You raise some interesting issues.

    SEANO 9.3

    An honest and sincere wrap up of the South Sydney's 2003 Season. A fantastic review.


    Well thought out article and there is merit in all your points. Top Article.

    RED DRAGON 8.6

    I personally found this interesting and a topic that I haven't read much about. You've scored well for originality of topic.

    BUNNY BOY 10

    Why a 10 you may ask. Poetry should convey a story and not just be about words ryhming. I can feel the passion that this was written in and I congratulate you BB.

    MOM Bunny Boy
    Encouragement Award to Red Dragon

  18. Anonymous

    Anonymous Juniors

    May 19, 2003
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    We lost??? The Bluebags lost??? Oh the humanity!!!

    LOL... well played Souths and congrats BunnyBoy.
    Thanks Penelope for coming to the refereeing rescue.... even if we were robbed. ;-)
  19. Penelope Pittstop

    Penelope Pittstop Bench

    May 22, 2003
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    :lol: It was possibly the best game so far. I honestly didn't know who had won until I added up the score.

    And Willow :p
  20. Seano

    Seano Juniors

    May 28, 2003
    Likes Received:

    we beat the blue bags! we beat the ahem.

    sorry bout that :D

    ah great game everyone that was a top quality game!

    congratulations to willow and bunny boy for some great work.

    see you in the finals willow (hopefully)

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