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HOLMES A COURT: I send my support to the Cronulla board, players and fans

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    Cronulla Sharks deputy chairman Keith Ward addresses the media during a press conference at Shark Park on Friday March 8, 2013. (Image: AAP/Damian Shaw)

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    Last week I was asked if I wanted to write something about the upcoming season opener between the Rabbitohs and the team from Bondi Junction which is, coincidentally, one of Sydney’s biggest shopping destinations.

    It was the week before the first round, and I declined because when it comes to opining on the intricacies of the game of rugby league there are hundreds, perhaps thousands, better positioned than I am to comment.

    I didn’t want to talk up the prospects of a Sonny Bill William and Sam Burgess clash, nor question whether Nathan Merritt is the best winger never to be selected for his state or country, nor ask who should be frontrunner for the NSW halfback position.

    I thought I’d let the coaches and the players do the talking.

    Cheap shots aside, nobody doubts that the Sydney Roosters will get a lot better this season, and their talent will learn from the opening round and make others pay for it.

    So while I won’t ever give my opinion on on-field issues, I am a bit more qualified to write about the organisation of clubs and crisis management, which is what we inherited at the Rabbitohs.

    We made it look like a turnaround but at times it felt like a bailout – a good old-fashioned all hands on deck, plug the leaks, keep the vessel afloat type of rescue.

    Which is why I wanted share my personal thoughts about the situation at Cronulla.

    (Note: the Rabbitohs family is full of people with their own strong opinions who voice them as friends of the game, and in no way is this an official South Sydney position.)

    With regards to any medical improprieties, God knows what happened, (and possibly the wise folks at ASADA do as well.)

    It will be sorted out and the sooner the better, as has been well articulated by the NRL CEO, David Smith.

    It is said the allegations threaten the existence of the Cronulla Sharks. No club deserves to be brought down by the actions, alleged actions, of any one group of people.

    A club is more than any set of administrators, coaches or players.

    A club belongs to its community, and that community extends to all clubs in the NRL and to all the fans of our game.

    While we talk in ruthless terms about winning this weekend’s game, we don’t go to a game to put another club out of business. We go to beat them on the scoreboard.

    We love their passionate fans, we love their singing, we love their pride and their colours (Ok we hate the Roosters, but that’s a different matter).

    In truth, no club sensibly wishes the demise of another club.

    I would love the Roosters to stay around for another century and be great combatants every time we face them. There is no victory sweeter than a hard-fought victory.

    So I send my support to the Cronulla board, to its fans and its players. I know your club can make it if every member of your community works together.

    I hope you rebuild yourself quickly, I hope you address whatever happened and that your club comes out stronger.

    I also hope the Rabbitohs beat you on Monday night, but that’s another matter entirely!

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    The Crowd Says (39)

    • March 14th 2013 @ 11:49am
      Worlds Biggest said | March 14th 2013 @ 11:49am | ! Report

      Certainly all Sharkies supporters and some of the the supporters and some of the players I really feel for but not the Board. They have presided over a rabble for far too long.

    • March 14th 2013 @ 11:50am
      Worlds Biggest said | March 14th 2013 @ 11:50am | ! Report

      Having a shocker on the i phone sorry !

      Anyway a new board is needed ASAP !

    • March 14th 2013 @ 11:52am
      Midfielder said | March 14th 2013 @ 11:52am | ! Report

      Well said and good on you for saying it…

    • March 14th 2013 @ 12:04pm
      oikee said | March 14th 2013 @ 12:04pm | ! Report

      Any chance of you coming to the Broncos and fixing them, they need help as well and on life support.
      Cheap shots aside. nice work, i dont know how you did it, but getting rusty to stay with the bunnies, well done.

      I dont like Manly, but i would not want them ever kicked out of the comp. There is no better feeling in the world than when Manly get beaten. Well you know the feeling, cooked chooks.

      I have my heart on the Warriors beating the Roosters again on Saturday night. Not because i dont like the Roosters, i just think the warriors will win.
      Thanks for the report, you should have posted last week, the bragging rights would be worth more.
      Glad to see Dave Smith getting behind the Sharks, and it sounds like more pain to come, so they need support.
      What does not kill you makes you stronger, right.

      • March 14th 2013 @ 4:33pm
        Dave said | March 14th 2013 @ 4:33pm | ! Report

        Same here oikee. I hate the broncos guts but still want them in the comp. nothing better than beating a full strength broncos side at their home ground on a Friday night. Just like last week.

      • March 14th 2013 @ 8:28pm
        Floyd Calhoun said | March 14th 2013 @ 8:28pm | ! Report

        Is this the same Oikee who was quite happy a couple of weeks ago, to sell the Sharks to the highest bidder, or let the gypsies take them? A tycoon pledges some moral support, and all of a sudden, you get all warm & fuzzy about Cronulla?!! Astonishing hypocrisy.

        • March 15th 2013 @ 3:05am
          AndyMack said | March 15th 2013 @ 3:05am | ! Report


    • March 14th 2013 @ 12:38pm
      Pomoz said | March 14th 2013 @ 12:38pm | ! Report

      • March 14th 2013 @ 12:41pm
        oikee said | March 14th 2013 @ 12:41pm | ! Report

        Well said Keith. I am sure Peter will take that on board.

      • March 14th 2013 @ 1:48pm
        Pete75 said | March 14th 2013 @ 1:48pm | ! Report

        Congratulations Keith,

        That makes a lot more sense than anything oikee has ever written. Hopefully he takes a leaf from your book.

        • March 15th 2013 @ 3:05am
          AndyMack said | March 15th 2013 @ 3:05am | ! Report

          haha, gold.

      • Roar Pro

        March 14th 2013 @ 2:52pm
        The High Shot said | March 14th 2013 @ 2:52pm | ! Report

        Keith speaks for me

      • Roar Guru

        March 15th 2013 @ 10:33am
        Bazzio said | March 15th 2013 @ 10:33am | ! Report

        Keith for PM

    • March 14th 2013 @ 12:49pm
      Renegade said | March 14th 2013 @ 12:49pm | ! Report

      Well said Peter.

      Definitely hoping the club comes out stronger after this whole affair.

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