The NRL computer says “NO”
The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs Greg Eastwood tackles the Melbourne Storm's Todd Lowrie during the NRL Grand Final at ANZ Stadium in Sydney, Sunday, Sept. 30, 2012. (AAP Image/Dean Lewins)
The Roar have obtained the transcript of an exclusive scene, taking place at NRL headquarters in the office of the director of football operations, Nathan McGuirk.
McGuirk is played by Little Britain’s David Walliams, and the two are discussing the 2013 NRL Draw.
McGuirk (to his P.A.): Seen my new computer software?
P.A.: Yes, I have
McGuirk: It’s Canadian, you know
P.A.: That’s nice
McGuirk: They call it Optimal Planning and I used it to plan the draw
McGuirk: Yeah, the NFL use it, so it must be good. It simplifies things by getting rid of logistical nightmares like clubs wanting equal treatment. Look I’ll show you (tapping away). I’m now asking the computer to submit a draw giving equal treatment to all clubs.
There, the computer says ‘NO’
P.A.: Mr McGuirk! All the NRL coaches are on the way up to complain about the draw. Security told them they couldn’t but they won’t take NO for an answer!
McGuirk: Don’t worry, Optimal Planning and I can handle this
(The coaches, led by Craig Bellamy, burst through the door)
Bellamy: McGuirk, I want our draw changed this instant! Three games in 12 days after travelling to England and back for the World Club Challenge is ridiculous!
McGuirk: I’ll see what I can do Craig (tapping on his keyboard). Ah, the computer says ‘NO’. Sorry, nothing to do with me.
Des Hasler: Hey what’s this about us playing last year’s top five finishers in the first five rounds? Are you deliberately giving the stronger teams a difficult draw?
McGuirk: With you in a moment Des (sound of keyboard tapping). Mmm, the computer says ‘NO’. Sorry Des, my hands are tied. And may I point out that the Tigers play their first three games in 12 days and they finished 10th last year.
Michael Potter: Gee, thanks for that. Also why isn’t there a Sunday afternoon game at Leichhardt Oval? It’s a tradition.
McGuirk: (tapping) Good question Mick. The computer asked me to explain ‘tradition’ so I’m now asking about Leichhardt. The computer says: ‘Where?’
Anthony Griffin: Thanks Nathan for the eleven Friday night games. It gives us a lot of seven-day turnarounds, it’s good for the sponsors and provides plenty of practice for the night finals.
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘You’re welcome’.
Griffin: But Jesus couldn’t you give us more than one day game. Our supporters with families hardly ever get to see us live.
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘What’s a supporter and what do you mean by seeing a game live?’
Geoff Toovey: (punching the table) And what about our poor sponsors?! Seven bl**dy Monday night games. We’ve been shafted!
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘No, but if the bald bloke with the red face and maroon tie threatens to put his fist through the screen tell him yes’.
Trent Robinson: Why are we lumbered with four five-day turnarounds? Surely it’s bad for the health of my players
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘NO’
Bellamy: It’s got to be bad playing two days after State of Origin
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘NO’.
Robinson: Don’t you think having teams with a five-day break playing sides who have had a week or more off compromises the competition?
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘NO’.
Wayne Bennett: The NRL is not interested in the game, the supporters or the welfare of players. It’s all about money. You’re just Channel 9′s lap dog aren’t you?
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘Yes… I mean No’
Bennett: Nathan, do you have a brain of your own?
McGuirk: The computer says: ‘No’.