Golden point winners a skill that should stay
There is so much debate about golden point lately with the recent ‘field-goal-athon’ between the Roosters and Sharks that I would like to remember the more recent golden point matches that have been utterly scintillating.
Round 1 2012: Knights versus Dragons was one of the best opening matches in years, decided by a GP.
Finals 2011: Broncos versus Dragons; Lockyer kicks the winning field goal with a broken cheek! One of the most exciting and memorable moments in rugby league history, especially for Darren Lockyer’s last ever game!
Round 4 2011: Titans versus Raiders; Titans comeback, an incredible turn of events down to Greg Bird kicking a winning field goal to snatch victory. You have to admit it was truly amazing.
Finals 2010: Tigers versus Roosters. One of the most exciting games of football when SKD ran nearly the full length of the field to seal their spot in the 2010 grand final.
But in light of this, with the recent ‘field-goal-athon’ that was present last Monday night, the game would have ended flat and decision-less at 80 minutes.
But if you can steal victory from a field goal, shouldn’t a coach have up to three players out of his 17-man squad able to perform pressure field goals? Line drop outs require a drop kick, so if we have a game with terrible line-drop outs all the time should we abolish it?
It seems like there is a push from coaches to remove golden point from the game, only to deny that a game can be one with a field goal from 40m out (State of Origin Game III – Cooper Cronk).
If that is the case, and I was Brian Smith or Shane Flanagan, I would have my halves, hooker and fullback have two hours each in front of the sticks snapping field goals with the second rowers all trying to apply pressure, smother play etc.
Peter Sterling is a very strong voice in league, and he is against GP, and mentioned that there is three types of refereeing. Origin, Telstra Premiership and golden point refereeing.
If this is the case a coach should train his side to these conditions, and the first coach who realises this and does train for GP conditions will ultimately succeed.
So to sum it up, some of my most memorable matches were decided in golden point. As a fan I think players should perfect their field goals above all else and ‘play the game’, rather than remove parts out of the game that are their weakest strengths.
If any of the players from last Monday nights game knew it was going to be a golden point affair, Carney and Pearce would be spending at least two hours a day leading up to that practicing field goals from 40m out, and after their failed attempts to level on State of Origin III, why hadn’t they already been perfecting them?