Pull your head in Kurtley and remember where you came from

David Lord Columnist

By David Lord, David Lord is a Roar Expert

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    Wallaby Kurtley Beale speaks with teammate James O'Connor and coach Robbie Deans.

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    Kurtley Beale had better watch his step, or flush a stellar Wallaby career down the toilet.

    The latest incident in Durban, forcing Rebels management to send Beale home with Cooper Vuna for fighting each other following a drinking session after the 64-7 flogging by the Sharks, is symptomatic of Beale forgetting his St Joseph’s College doctrine and philosophy of rugby.

    Both benchmarks were set by the incredible Brother Henry, a schoolboy coaching legend. He was both a gentleman, and a gentle man.

    But one helluva rugby coach.

    Between 1923 and 1953, excluding World War II, Brother Henry won 18 GPS first XV and 15 second XV premierships, coaching both sides together.

    His doctrine – possession, position, and pace.

    His philosophy – play hard, play fair.

    Beale is not doing either too well at the moment, and it was much the same story in his time with the Waratahs.

    Brother Henry died in 1970, aged 93, but he would have loved to have seen the spindly, head-geared Kurtley Beale dominate GPS rugby in the fly-half slot from 2004 to 2006.

    Beale was his ultimate – possession, position, and pace.

    Joeys won the premiership all three years on the back of Beale’s sheer brilliance in attack.

    The first time I saw Beale he reminded me instantly of Mark Ella at Matraville High 30 years earlier.

    The same instinctive, intuitive, ability to find holes that weren’t apparent to the naked eye.

    And suddenly Ella and Beale were in the clear. Uncanny.

    Now Beale’s at the crossroads. Ella never reached that point, he was never a problem. Nature’s gentleman.

    But Beale is just proving if you forget where you came from, you are lost.

    Beale is lost. Joeys has produced a long line of Wallabies, far more than any other school in Australia. Little wonder.

    Since 1903, Joeys has won 54 first XV premierships. Next best in Kings with 27. Between them, their combined 81 premierships makes a huge hole in 110 years of GPS rugby.

    But Joeys can thank Brother Henry for his doctrine and philosophy that still holds good today in the hallowed halls of Hunters Hill.

    Remember those days Kurtley, and pull your head in. You are too good a bloke, and too good a Wallaby, to let these recurring brain explosions ruin your life.

    David Lord
    David Lord

    David Lord was deeply involved in two of the biggest sporting stories - World Series Cricket in 1977 and professional rugby in 1983. After managing Jeff Thomson and Viv Richards during WSC, in 1983 David signed 208 of the best rugby players from Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales and France to play an international pro circuit. The concept didn?t get off the ground, but it did force the IRB to get cracking and bring in the World Rugby Cup, now one of the world?s great sporting spectacles

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    The Crowd Says (190)

    • March 26th 2013 @ 5:02am
      Billy Bob said | March 26th 2013 @ 5:02am | ! Report

      And not only Wallabies David, Joeys also produces league players, I have a cousin who went there who had a long league career. Ben Kennedy is another.
      I doubt though that Kurtley thinks too much about Brother Henry.
      The drinking culture in rugby needs assessment. The trouble is that some people are not able to balance their behaviour after a drink. Which means trouble for all.
      But as a junior coach I am interested in this philosophy of rugby. What exactly did Brother Henry mean by ‘position’ in his motto?

      • Columnist

        March 26th 2013 @ 6:08am
        David Lord said | March 26th 2013 @ 6:08am | ! Report

        Billy Bob, Brother Henry coached a very different game of rugby to what is played today. There were no forwards swanning in the backline, every player under Brother Henry knew exactly where he was supposed to be in every sector of the field – forwards did forwards work, and left the backs to do theirs. Sounds regimented, but it was a winning formula. And let’s not forget Stan McCabe, Joeys cricket legend.

        • March 26th 2013 @ 9:22pm
          Phil said | March 26th 2013 @ 9:22pm | ! Report

          Ive heard that taught as position referring to field position rather than individual positions. But that might have been a NZ philosophy. makes sense though!

      • March 26th 2013 @ 1:27pm
        Drop Kick said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:27pm | ! Report

        Joeys also produces plenty of old boys who disgrace themselves every year at GPS matches (esp Joeys vs Ignatius) with excessive drinking, violent behaviour etc. Kutley’s behaviour is pretty mild compared to the average Joey’s knob.

        • March 26th 2013 @ 9:01pm
          Steve said | March 26th 2013 @ 9:01pm | ! Report

          It’s truly amazing that a drunken Rah-rah thug who thinks his privilege entitles him to a life free of consequences should emerge from an institution like St. Joseph’s, right?

        • April 5th 2013 @ 9:22am
          Bondi said | April 5th 2013 @ 9:22am | ! Report

          Joeys also has the luxury of being a school with alot of money and they give scholarships to the most promising kids in the state. If you take most of the talent pool then it is no wonder you are producing stars and winning GPS matches. Most other schools can’t afford to throw that same amount of money in.

          • May 15th 2013 @ 10:41pm
            Lewis said | May 15th 2013 @ 10:41pm | ! Report

            Actually Joeys offers very little scholarships, especially in comparison to other private schools. Only one boy in the current first XV is on a scholarship, for mathematics. Beale was on a scholarship from year 7 as part of the Aboriginal program, of which there are many other boys who don’t play rugby. Please don’t just throw out accusations like that which are unfounded. I totally agree that the practice of offering scholarships to promising athletes dilutes the talent pool in NSW, but as far as I can see, Joeys doesn’t take part in it.

    • March 26th 2013 @ 5:03am
      Hightackle said | March 26th 2013 @ 5:03am | ! Report

      I dont think where he played football as a school kid has much to do with anything.
      He got pissed and punched a team mate.
      I think Beale should be more concerned about himself than Brother Henry.
      Beale needs to be more worried about where hes heading, not where hes been or where he played school rugby.

      • Columnist

        March 26th 2013 @ 6:24am
        David Lord said | March 26th 2013 @ 6:24am | ! Report

        You miss the point Hightackle. Kurtley learned his rugby the Brother Henry way, it’s been passed down through the ages. and the lessons learned as a person. That’s what Kurtley has forgotten. I can’t think of one other Joeys Wallaby who has forgotten those personal lessons.

        • March 26th 2013 @ 8:15am
          Tissot Time said | March 26th 2013 @ 8:15am | ! Report

          David any benefits accrued by nurture over nature is all too easily eroded by the two carbon fragment (C2H5OH)in many.

        • March 26th 2013 @ 1:13pm
          Drop Kick said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:13pm | ! Report

          Brother Henry died 19 years before Kurtley was born. I bet Kurtley doesn’t even know who this mythical figure was.

          • Columnist

            March 26th 2013 @ 1:36pm
            David Lord said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:36pm | ! Report

            That’s like saying not every cricketer has heard of Bradman,

            • March 26th 2013 @ 1:40pm
              Drop Kick said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:40pm | ! Report

              Pretty obviously modern cricketers have not adopted Bradman’s personal value system.

            • March 26th 2013 @ 4:53pm
              PJ said | March 26th 2013 @ 4:53pm | ! Report


              I am an ex Joeys old boy class of 99 & 1stXV member in 98 & 99 -even i dont know who Brother Henry was Sorry to break your bubble.

              • March 26th 2013 @ 5:12pm
                Johnno said | March 26th 2013 @ 5:12pm | ! Report

                Ben Badgter and TKS, got you blokes on the Bell in 99 on your hallowed hunter’s hill home turf on the bell , sucked in.
                But P.J the ref was dodgy that day, TKS got all the 50/50 calls,

              • Roar Guru

                March 26th 2013 @ 6:20pm
                jeznez said | March 26th 2013 @ 6:20pm | ! Report

                PJ – I left the school in 1990 and I can assure you the entire student body knew who Br Henry was and what he had acheived – a real shame that was lost in less than a decade.

              • March 26th 2013 @ 10:00pm
                Brendo said | March 26th 2013 @ 10:00pm | ! Report

                That was 2000 Johnno. I played in the 2s for TKS that day

            • March 27th 2013 @ 1:35am
              Hightackle said | March 27th 2013 @ 1:35am | ! Report

              “That’s like saying not every cricketer has heard of Bradman”

              Was Brother Henry the best rugby player thats ever lived and known as such all over the planet or are you being a little silly.
              I would suggest that 99% of all pro rugby players in the world have never heard of Brother Henry but 99% of all pro cricketers have prolly heard of Bradman.

          • March 26th 2013 @ 1:37pm
            Bananas said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:37pm | ! Report

            What’s with the Drop Kick?

            • March 26th 2013 @ 10:35pm
              Johnno said | March 26th 2013 @ 10:35pm | ! Report

              Ok Brendo sorry mate, i thought it was 99 I watched the match on ABC. Great days, good memories you had watching there and being at TKS then. Love it if GPS could get like those halcyon days of the 1990’s, good times, good memories.

    • Roar Guru

      March 26th 2013 @ 5:10am
      biltongbek said | March 26th 2013 @ 5:10am | ! Report

      It seems the young man needs guidance, is there no person he sees as a role model who might be able to take the lead?

      • Columnist

        March 26th 2013 @ 6:15am
        David Lord said | March 26th 2013 @ 6:15am | ! Report

        biltongbek, there could be no-one better than mercurial Mark Ella, the most instinctive and intuitive footballer of any code I have ever seen.

        • March 26th 2013 @ 6:17am
          mania said | March 26th 2013 @ 6:17am | ! Report

          so is ella mentoring beale now?

        • Roar Guru

          March 26th 2013 @ 6:32am
          biltongbek said | March 26th 2013 @ 6:32am | ! Report

          David does Beale know Ella, I mean has he met them and sloken to him, and does he respect the man?

          • Columnist

            March 26th 2013 @ 6:58am
            David Lord said | March 26th 2013 @ 6:58am | ! Report

            Everybody respects Mark Ella, but Kurtley has probably had more more contact with Mark’s twin Glen. How far they have gone on talks, I’m not privy to. But any contact with an Ella, including younger brother Gary, can only be a major plus.

            • March 26th 2013 @ 1:34pm
              Wii said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:34pm | ! Report

              But do they really David way to make a broad sweeping statement.
              How can anyone respect someone they don’t know?

              • March 27th 2013 @ 1:40am
                Hightackle said | March 27th 2013 @ 1:40am | ! Report

                You better respect Chuck Norris.

    • March 26th 2013 @ 5:39am
      mania said | March 26th 2013 @ 5:39am | ! Report

      yeah beale. remember where u came from before u got that scholarship and started at a private school. remember the poor downtrodden neighbourhood in mt druitt you were taken from and had your feet set on the priviledged path to make yourself a better person and given the opportunity to get paid for doing something u love.
      remember how lucky u are kurtley .

      • March 26th 2013 @ 10:28am
        jameswm said | March 26th 2013 @ 10:28am | ! Report

        Exactly right mania. When I read the headline, that is what I thought the article was about.

        I think one problem with guys like Kurtley is they’ve never really EARNED the money they have. They haven’t had to go to uni and work part time, or start an apprenticeship and study part time. They’ve never had to really work for their money, the way the rest of us do. Start at the bottom, on little money, and work their way up.

        This means they don’t really appreciate what they have. If they’d had to pay rent, pay their groceries, and struggle and make financial sacrifices, they’d appreciate what they have and not carry on like complete pork chops.

        All they do is train and play a sport they love. Good luck to them, but someone needs to keep their feet on the ground, big time. Some have kept a balanced view on life, but too many are lost.

        Kurtley needs a dad or other role model to help him invest his money, set himself up for the future, give him basically a stipend to live off, plan his future career by studying, and involve him in charity work, to show how lucky he really is. Sacrifice part of your weekly salary to those who need it more. Surely there’s a charity that means a lot to Kurtley.

        I don’t know Kurtley personally. But I’d wager he lacks a positive and helpful role model.

        • March 26th 2013 @ 10:34am
          mania said | March 26th 2013 @ 10:34am | ! Report

          jameswm – his family/parents had to struggle. you’d think that that would be enough of a lesson and reminder of where he came from and what he left behind.
          agree fully with you jameswm .I don’t know Kurtley personallyeither but it seems he’s forgotten and needs a role model figure he can turn to when he needs some perspective and advice.

          • March 26th 2013 @ 11:02am
            jameswm said | March 26th 2013 @ 11:02am | ! Report

            I don’t even know if it’s a role model for Kurtley to turn to. I think he needs a role model to grab him by the scruff of the neck and explain a few life facts to him.

            Kurtley might not think to turn to anyone.

            • March 26th 2013 @ 9:36pm
              feed it in straight Chriso said | March 26th 2013 @ 9:36pm | ! Report

              It sounds like Vuna tried to do that. Maybe didn’t grab him hard enough.

          • March 27th 2013 @ 1:30am
            Hightackle said | March 27th 2013 @ 1:30am | ! Report

            I just dont buy it.
            You dont need a role model to show you that getting pissed and assaulting people is not cool.
            He needs support but this role model stuff is kinda silly.
            Hes not 5.

            • March 27th 2013 @ 2:11pm
              Wii said | March 27th 2013 @ 2:11pm | ! Report

              I’m with you here Hightackle, all this role model talk is rubbish.
              Beale needs to help himself before anyone else will want to help him.

              The guy has an attitude first and foremost and needs a reality check not some cotton wool poppy codling

        • March 26th 2013 @ 1:46pm
          Mango Jack said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:46pm | ! Report

          I’d have thought the senior players in the team would perform the mentoring role?

      • March 26th 2013 @ 10:50pm
        GWS said | March 26th 2013 @ 10:50pm | ! Report

        Genuine change in anyone is a very rare thing

    • March 26th 2013 @ 7:07am
      Kippa said | March 26th 2013 @ 7:07am | ! Report

      Good call mania

      • March 26th 2013 @ 7:27am
        mania said | March 26th 2013 @ 7:27am | ! Report

        thanx kippa. i reckon beale needs help. he’s struggling with something and the alcohol episodes is just a symptom. at the minimum he’s an alky and needs the correct professional help. turning on the guy and bludgeoning him with statements like “pull your head in” is overly simplistic.

        • March 26th 2013 @ 8:15am
          Train Without A Station said | March 26th 2013 @ 8:15am | ! Report

          He’s obviously struggling with the fact he appears to be a knob of a bloke. Don’t make excuses for him. Plenty of other player ar able to manage their injuries well (e.g. James Horwill, and even Quade Cooper during his knee rehab) without getting on the sauce and belting people. Is this not the 3rd time Kurtley has got on the drink whilst injured and been involved in an assault? Christ, the court case from him doing it last year is still in mediation isn’t it?

          • March 26th 2013 @ 8:22am
            mania said | March 26th 2013 @ 8:22am | ! Report

            Train Without A Station – is that how u would treat a loved one if they came to yu with a drinking problem? the 3 amigo’s are definately knobs but that doesnt mean that they’re immune to problems that everyone else gets help with. cant believe that the issue of beales alcoholism hasnt been addessed before and for the sake fo the WB’s it keeps getting swept under the rug.
            SirGrahamHenry hit it on the head when he said that better people make better allBlacks. beale needs help to get better.

            • March 26th 2013 @ 8:32am
              Justin2 said | March 26th 2013 @ 8:32am | ! Report

              He may be an alcoholic but from afar you cannot diagnose that. He certainly doesn’t know how to enjoy a few though without negative repercussions.

              • March 26th 2013 @ 9:22am
                johnson said | March 26th 2013 @ 9:22am | ! Report

                Hi Mania, just curious how you know that at the minimum he is an alcoholic?

              • March 26th 2013 @ 9:37am
                Dirk said | March 26th 2013 @ 9:37am | ! Report

                quite the judgmental expert aren’t you Mania? An amazing ability you seem to have, to be able to diagnose people as alcoholics, knobs etc from afar? It’s quite selfish of you just to sit behind behind your keyboard and not share such ability with the community. Just think how much good you could do.

              • March 26th 2013 @ 9:48am
                mania said | March 26th 2013 @ 9:48am | ! Report

                johnson – definiition of an alky is someone who drinks once a week all the time. beale gets into fights when he’s drinking. its pretty obvious isnt it? this is solely based on my experience and i’m not as expert as dirk makes out.
                dirk i didnt call beale a knob first, i was paraphrasing. u do realise that this is an opinion site or are u lost? would love to see what your super powers are.

              • March 26th 2013 @ 10:42am
                Justin2 said | March 26th 2013 @ 10:42am | ! Report

                “definiition of an alky is someone who drinks once a week all the time.”

                You may need to clarify this mania. A large percentage of the Western world come into that statement!

              • March 26th 2013 @ 10:45am
                mania said | March 26th 2013 @ 10:45am | ! Report

                j2 – not my definaition. its what i was told by a counselor when i went to an alcohol informative evening. at that time i was classified as an alky and all my mate and the majority of the office .

              • March 27th 2013 @ 1:16am
                johnson said | March 27th 2013 @ 1:16am | ! Report

                I don’t think you know what your talking about Mania. I think you should take what you said back. An Alcoholic by the Alcoholics annonomous definition is someone who can’t have one drink. I don’t think you know that about Kurtley. I don’t think anywhere the definition of an alcoholic has anything to do with fighting.

            • March 26th 2013 @ 1:39pm
              Wii said | March 26th 2013 @ 1:39pm | ! Report

              I would say in my non expert opinion that he is a binge drinker with anger issues and a huge ego that needs popping.
              Claiming alcoholism is a cowards way out of a messy situation that he created all by himself

              • March 26th 2013 @ 2:37pm
                beyondthestump said | March 26th 2013 @ 2:37pm | ! Report

                Binge drinking is still a form of alcoholism, feel free to look it up. Mania is on the money and I don’t see it as giving Beale an excuse to hide behind. He still needs to choose to address and deal with the issue. If he doesn’t, alcohol problem or not, he will be an even bigger know.

              • March 26th 2013 @ 2:49pm
                beyondthestump said | March 26th 2013 @ 2:49pm | ! Report

                But whether you agree that it’s alcoholism or not it is surely aclohol abuse and KB certainly does not know how to manage it.

              • March 26th 2013 @ 3:02pm
                Wii said | March 26th 2013 @ 3:02pm | ! Report

                The guy needs his attitude checked first and foremost, what I see is people blaming the booze for his immaturity and poor decisions get a grip.
                In my teens and throughout my 20s I hit the booze hard as did most of my peers and teammates funnily none of us went around thumping people and simply put being a right twat then claiming alcoholism.
                No we grew up and took responsibility for our actions instead of blaming the grog!!!

                In this day and age it’s all to easy to claim illness or blame others for ones problems and the amount of excuses makers for his behaviour allow this to happen

              • March 26th 2013 @ 4:50pm
                catcat said | March 26th 2013 @ 4:50pm | ! Report

                I heard there is a spot vacant at a rehab centre on the northern beaches… apparently they can sort you out in only 2 weeks.

    • Roar Guru

      March 26th 2013 @ 7:09am
      Turnover said | March 26th 2013 @ 7:09am | ! Report

      KB should be sent back to club rugby for a couple of weeks and not be considered for Rebels selection. Furthermore Robbie should forget KB for the international season. He needs to send a clear message that this type of behaviour won’t be tolerated.

      If he is back for the Rebels In 2/3 weeks and ends up in the British Lions series then that’s a joke.

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