Aussies “rate themselves”: Sinfield

Laine Clark Roar Guru

By Laine Clark,

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    Even Kevin Sinfield was surprised to win rugby league’s unofficial prize for the world’s best player – the Golden Boot.

    However, the Leeds champion dismissed his Australian critics who believe NRL stars like Melbourne’s Cameron Smith and Canterbury’s Dally M Medallist Ben Barba were better placed to win the award with Sinfield claiming Aussies “rate themselves very highly”.

    Sinfield, 32, looked set to go a long way to silencing the cynics when he led English Super League champions Leeds out against a star-studded Melbourne Storm in the upcoming World Club Challenge.

    But the backlash over the England captain ousting the stars of the NRL does not look like going away soon after the Englishman’s response.

    “The Australians probably think the NRL competition is far superior to Super League,” he told BBC Sport.

    “Whether they rate me or not I am not sure, but with a lot of the Australians they rate themselves very highly.

    “I am not bothered or interested in what they say. If they want to have a crack then they can fire away.”

    Sinfield became the fourth Englishman to claim the Golden Boot, and the first since Andy Farrell in 2004.

    “I am surprised to win it and I feel very fortunate,” Sinfield told the Yorkshire Evening Post.

    “I don’t pick the award. Like everything, people have an opinion.

    “When do you ever have a 100 per cent winner?”

    Back in pre-season training with Leeds, Sinfield will no doubt be looking to get the last laugh in the World Club Challenge (WCC) at home ground Headingley on February 22.

    Sinfield led Leeds to a 26-12 triumph over Manly at last year’s WCC, sparking a big year for the 10-year Rhinos skipper.

    He overcame a head knock to lead the Rhinos to their sixth Super League title in nine years while also collecting the man of the match award.

    He also took Leeds to the Challenge Cup final at Wembley which they lost to Warrington.

    However, eyebrows were raised over Sinfield’s international efforts last year which only featured Tests against France and Wales.

    “If people are not happy about it, it is not my problem,” Sinfield said.

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    The Crowd Says (35)

    • January 11th 2013 @ 3:45am
      AndyMack said | January 11th 2013 @ 3:45am | ! Report

      Quality player. So hard to judge across competitions. One thing i can say is the poms watch the nrl much more than the nrl judges watch the super league, so it sounds a fair judgement.

      • January 11th 2013 @ 7:54am
        Patrick D said | January 11th 2013 @ 7:54am | ! Report

        Sam Burgess was interviewed about the award and had some interesting things to say about the comparison between NRL and superleague. He indicated that while the top teams from both are of a very good standard the difference with the NRL is that all games are tough, whereas in Superleague there are definitely some weaker teams. Across 26 rounds this really takes it toll and makes champions all the more impressive

    • Roar Guru

      January 11th 2013 @ 4:41am
      peeeko said | January 11th 2013 @ 4:41am | ! Report

      why isnt the world club challenge ever played in Australia? trust me the English would never win if that was the case. Australians probably have a right to rate themselves after holding the Ashes for the last 43 years

      • January 11th 2013 @ 8:09am
        Godfrey said | January 11th 2013 @ 8:09am | ! Report

        The last time it was played in Australia was 1997 when Wigan beat the Broncos 20 to 14. The top British sides are always competitive with ours and that’s why they are beating us by nearly 2 to 1 in the World Club Challenge. Souths made the finals in 2007 and then played a trial against Leeds in the US for the first game of 2008. Leeds flogged them. Super League lacks depth, not quality at the top.

        • Roar Guru

          January 11th 2013 @ 9:15am
          peeeko said | January 11th 2013 @ 9:15am | ! Report

          97 was the same year where the aussie comp was split in 2 and super league played a world club challenge tournament
          these were the qrtr final results
          Auckland Warriors def. Bradford Bulls 62-14 Ericsson Stadium Auckland 9,553
          Hunter Mariners def. Wigan Warriors 22-18 Central Park Wigan 9,553
          Brisbane Broncos def. St Helens 66-12 ANZ Stadium Brisbane 6,438
          Cronulla Sharks def. London Broncos 40-16 The Stoop London 6,239

          • January 11th 2013 @ 10:32am
            Boris said | January 11th 2013 @ 10:32am | ! Report

            That world club challenge featured all Aussie super league sides and all the English. If I remember correctly the Aussie teams won all but 5 of the 65 competition games. Even Adelaide Rams were dishing out punishment.

            For me it was great to demolish the English sides when half of our best players were not even involved as they were in the ARL comp.

        • January 13th 2013 @ 1:07pm
          KSI said | January 13th 2013 @ 1:07pm | ! Report

          Wigan beat Brisbane in 1994. It was a Wednesday night game in Brisbane. Brisbane played weekend before and after.

          1997 the Broncos won the extended WCC and I think the put 90 points on one English team.

    • January 11th 2013 @ 6:55am
      Matt said | January 11th 2013 @ 6:55am | ! Report

      One team has a home game, the other has to fly from the bottom of the world to the top to an opposite timezone and season. Gee, I wonder if one team has an advantage. Much as I don’t like manly, they would have won easily all things being equal. It’s also pointless having it first game of the season, like the trials lots of teams have new players, and trying new combos etc; can’t read into the results much.

      • January 11th 2013 @ 8:07am
        Andy said | January 11th 2013 @ 8:07am | ! Report

        Manly may have won if it was played at brookvale. However, at the time they did not beat cronulla in the trial preceding the game, and they had lost their coach.

    • January 11th 2013 @ 7:51am
      Robert said | January 11th 2013 @ 7:51am | ! Report

      Sinfield is spot on.The Aussie’s do have inflated egos in regards to how they rate themselves and the NRL.It maybe the best League comp in the world,but lets be a bit humble about it.I even heard Laurie Daley emphatically say one day that the NRL is the best comp of any sport in the world.His opinion,but sounds very American or Mundine

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    • Roar Rookie

      January 11th 2013 @ 8:21am
      Damn Straight said | January 11th 2013 @ 8:21am | ! Report

      “The Australians probably think the NRL competition is far superior to Super League,” he told BBC Sport.

      If you don’t see it that way Kevin, you are seriously deluded. Be humble? This has nothing to do with ego, it’s just an objective observation. I’m not some cock-eyed patriot, who has rose coloured glasses on and thinks that just because it is Australian, it is superior to anything else the world has to offer. The English Premier League is the best domestic football comp in the world, the NBA is the best basketball comp in the world(for example).
      These awards(including RLW immortals) are a farcical wank. Kevin Sinfield is a great player and ambassador for the game, but this is bullsh*t. It is akin to Besart Berisha winning the ballon d’or.

      • January 14th 2013 @ 10:52am
        Renegade said | January 14th 2013 @ 10:52am | ! Report

        Did you watch any games involving Kevin Sinfield this year?

        • January 15th 2013 @ 7:16am
          Big Time said | January 15th 2013 @ 7:16am | ! Report

          I did, I have seen plenty of him playing over the years too. As I said a good player, and apparently a top bloke. Definately not the best player in the world, or in England for that matter.

    • January 11th 2013 @ 8:30am
      oikee said | January 11th 2013 @ 8:30am | ! Report

      I know one thing, if the Broncos had Seinfield in the halves instead of Norman, we be lifting the Trophy and have it nicely tucked away right now. Sam Tomkins is another world class player who would look good in a Bronco jersey.
      Cant wait to see four Burgess brothers on the paddock at the same time this year. bom.

      I really cant see the Storm beating the Rhino’s, across the park they should be too strong for the Storm.

      • January 11th 2013 @ 11:27am
        Big Time said | January 11th 2013 @ 11:27am | ! Report

        You think he would play in the halves hey. I was thinking more wing or possibly fullback.

        Newman would add some size to the pack.

        George a hard working Lock Forward,

        Kramer a livewire crazy 2nd Rower. He may be a bit too loose for the modern game. Maybe back in the 80’s would have been his time.

        Elaine in the cheergirl outfit you think?

        • January 11th 2013 @ 3:25pm
          DubbleBubble said | January 11th 2013 @ 3:25pm | ! Report

          “Crazy” Joe Divola to be the firebrand a la Mark Geyer.

      • February 16th 2013 @ 1:24pm
        johnno8721 said | February 16th 2013 @ 1:24pm | ! Report

        I wouldn’t be so sure of that. My team Wigan went there last season with a really depleted squad and put 50 past them (at headingley). I have a sneaky feeling that Melbourne could do the same. Leeds have were pretty poor for the majority of last season and even last week they lost in round 2 of Super League to Castleford (who are a team who normally finish near the bottom of SL).

        Here is the highlights of the game I was talking about when Wigan put 50 past them
        Also watch out for some of the plays Sam Tomkins did in this game, Awesome!

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