What does an NRL fan think of AFL fiasco?

ScottWoodward.me Roar Guru

By ScottWoodward.me, ScottWoodward.me is a Roar Guru


78 Have your say

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    It would be great to be a fly on the wall and listen to the bartering, the give, the take, and the promised speeches. It would have made for reverting reality TV.

    The average rugby league fan could not give a drop kick and punt about Essendon and James Hird except that now that the southern circus is over, will the ASADA focus turn to the Cronulla Sharks next?

    Are the Sharks still certain to play in the finals this year after reaching a season high on Monday night defeating the hot pot Roosters?

    If the rugby league world is to learn anything from their southern cousins then it is to plan for a quick win/win solution. The AFL and the Essendon Board looked to have achieved a very professional end solutions that, if allowed to, could have dragged on for possibly years.

    James Hird was brilliant in launching a Supreme Court action against AFL alleging league boss Andrew Demetriou and his deputy Gillon McLachlan “tipped off” Essendon that its players had taken performance enhancing drugs.

    This shock tactic gave Hird great bargaining power which he has now miraculously dropped after being handed down his sentence, which given the accusations is in reality somewhere between a kick up the back side and a slap with a feather.

    The AFL commission have outed Hird for 12 months, but hang on, he still will be able to lead the Bombers into the Finals next year and even be the head coach should they win the flag.

    The $2m fine handed down to the wealthy Bombers will be a piece of fluff off one of their black and red socks, but will save Hird’s reputed $1m salary.

    All legal bills by all Essendon personnel are expected to be met by the Bombers.

    The Bombers will suffer from draft picks over the next two years which is their harshest punishment, which is why they have been relegated to ninth this season.

    Bombers assistant coach Mark “Bomber” Thompson has been hit with a 30k fine which again the Bombers are expected to pay, but he will likely end up with a substantial raise if he becomes the head coach in 2014 while Hird jogs on the spot in the stand at Windy Hill.

    It really is a circus, and if this happened in the corporate world head coach James Hird, assistant coach Mark Thompson and football manager Danny Corcoran would all be gone forever.

    Sporting bodies are a forgiving group, more so if you happen to be talented or even a living legend, and more so if you are smart enough to launch a Supreme Court action.

    ASADA has interviewed 11 Sharks players, but the NRL has indicated that they will not act until the final report is completed.

    Should ASADA find a case against the Sharks, who are certain to win a top eight finals birth, they could be disqualified from this year’s competition, which opens up a new opportunity for the ninth placed club.

    The Sharks could do worse than hire the now unemployed James Hird as a consultant.

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    The Crowd Says (78)

    • August 28th 2013 @ 7:28am
      Pest said | August 28th 2013 @ 7:28am | ! Report

      That Melb sporting teams either cheat the cap or use drugs for advantage ,

      • Roar Guru

        August 28th 2013 @ 9:03am
        ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:03am | ! Report

        Whatever they do I am sure everyone else does or doesn’t also.

    • August 28th 2013 @ 8:08am
      ferret said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:08am | ! Report

      So this is the outcome of the “worst day in history in Australian sport”! One team prevented from playing the finals in one year and 12 month ban for the coach. Wow, I can see why this warranted a national press conference, the attendance of the minister for federal police and sports minister and the millions of column inches devoted to the topic.
      Even if the Sharks “case” goes a similar way I must say I am very underwhelmed by this investigation which was supposed to rock the very foundations of all sport in Oz.

      I do however disagree with one point in your article , namely, “.. if this happened in the corporate world .. would all be gone forever.” Sorry but the corporate boys get it much easier. Remember the bankers that brought us the GFC? None of them have been prosecuted as yet, and many retained their positions on the board and have subsequently earned bonuses. Not a good example.

      • August 28th 2013 @ 8:23am
        oikee said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:23am | ! Report

        The darkest day in sports history, reduced to chitlings by the AFL. haha
        Who can ever take them serious ever again.

      • August 28th 2013 @ 8:23am
        Ian Whitchurch said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:23am | ! Report

        No, it’s not the outcome.

        This is about the AFL’s internal rules over ‘bringing the game into disrepute’.

        It’s not about the Anti-Doping code offenses.

        Read Appendix A of the charge sheet, which was released to the public.

        “27. In late May 2012 Dank discovered that the Thymosin he had been providing the players (Thymosin Beta-4) was in fact prohibited.”

        Player infractions are coming.

        • August 28th 2013 @ 8:30am
          ferret said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:30am | ! Report

          Ian thanks for the update. But in effect this makes the AFL’s response even more inept. If, as you say, the AFL now know that illegal compounds were administered under a club-sanctioned program, or at least by someone who was employed (Dank) by the club, then a ban of 12 months and demotion to 9th position is TOTALLY INADEQUATE.

        • August 28th 2013 @ 8:33am
          oikee said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:33am | ! Report

          Oh, the fine print which is now just dotting the i’s and crossing the t’s after the big salad has been dissed out. Some big salad.
          Not enough to feed the pigeons.
          Very weak, and really nobody expected anything less. hey might as well shut down the government in Victoria and let the AFL run the state. hehe
          The only dark day i seen in the deep-south was people in black standing around on Melbourne day in front of the tumble weeds and ghost town paying homage to a broken down 100 million wheel. hehe

          • August 28th 2013 @ 9:14am
            Ian Whitchurch said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:14am | ! Report


            The salad isnt the main course. Just saying.

            Have some high points from the document that Hird’s brinksmanship put into the public domain.

            72. The Thymosin referred to on the “Patient Information/Informed Consent” forms and administered to the players was:
            (a) Thymosin Beta-4 which is prohibited by the AFL Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code (the relevant facts in relation to this allegation are set out in Annexure A to this Notice of Charge); alternatively
            (b) a substance in respect of which the Club had failed to reasonably satisfy itself was not prohibited by the AFL Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code.

            90. Hooper states that 34 Essendon players were injected with an Amino Acid compound sourced by Patient A from a Chemist in Mexico. The identity and integrity of the commodity was inferred by Hooper from labelling without independent or professional verification. Additionally, the Amino Acid appears to have been in storage at HyperMED for a considerable time prior to its use.
            91. Save for the above, Hooper does not know the content or source of the amino acids he injected into the players at HyperMed.

            92. The Club:
            (a) did not know and does not know the content or source of the amino acids Hooper injected into the players at HyperMed; and
            (b) failed to reasonably satisfy itself that the substances Hooper injected into the players at HyperMed were not prohibited by the AFL Anti-Doping Code and the World Anti-Doping Code. Neither Cerebrolysin nor the amino acid mix was approved by Reid, in accordance with the Protocol, or otherwise.

        • Roar Guru

          August 28th 2013 @ 9:36am
          ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:36am | ! Report

          ASADA and WADA also haven’t chimmed in as yet.

      • Roar Guru

        August 28th 2013 @ 9:08am
        ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:08am | ! Report

        You are being picky……the Corp world are not so forgiving. Hird has got a slap on the wrist – so far anyway.

    • August 28th 2013 @ 8:21am
      oikee said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:21am | ! Report

      A slap and tickle. One question, they get fined 2 million, who gets that, the AFL? so are they fining themselves 2 million.
      You summed it up well Scott, and to be honest i dont even read about this any more. It all seems a little soft to me.
      Here is my punishment, they would be sacked, gone for good everyone involved. The club would be shut down and dispursed and the code would have become a role model for anyone in future who even blinked at the chance of taking drugs.
      as it stands this is nothing short of a joke,. well it is a joke.
      Is why i follow the GG, and only the GG.
      For all our games warts, we still have morals scruples and ethics.
      Pus we have some really good leaders now in Dave Smith, Jimmy Doyle and Todd, along with John Grant behind the scenes, if that does not confidence, nothing ever will.

      • Roar Guru

        August 28th 2013 @ 9:12am
        ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:12am | ! Report

        yep RL is in great shape and I will be interested to see how they handle this. They have the advantage of not being sued so they may be much tougher.
        Hird was “prevented natural justice” and he had the AFL cold with witnesses which gave him enormous bargaining power. I doubt that anyone at the Sharks have an ace of their sleeve like that

        • August 28th 2013 @ 10:02am
          Australian Rules said | August 28th 2013 @ 10:02am | ! Report

          Scott, Hird didn’t have the “AFL cold with witnesses which gave him enormous bargaining power”. His Writ made allegations which were flatly denied by the AFL.

          He issued & served proceedings, the AFL said “go for it” and he backed down.

          I’m not sure how you’re construing that as a strategic win for Hird.

    • August 28th 2013 @ 8:44am
      Pot Stirrer said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:44am | ! Report

      what i find odd about it is one bloke gets 4 months so he can take over while the other sits out 12 months, Nice little slight of hand there by the AFL. However given they have issued penalties is that then not a given that they were using performance enhancing peptidesand the fact Hird has taken his punishment from the AFL that he was prob told it would be in his best interests becuase its going to get a whole lot worse for him. As forthe Sharks its appearing to me that its going to get very ugly very quickly in te not to distant future.

      • Roar Guru

        August 28th 2013 @ 9:18am
        ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:18am | ! Report

        The only major concern for Essendon is they will lose draft picks. The footy manager and the assistant will be fine and as I said James will be back for the finals next next.
        It would have got messy had the Supreme Court come into play for both parties.
        The NRL Commish dont have to worry about that so they can go hard.

        • August 28th 2013 @ 9:29am
          Ian Whitchurch said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:29am | ! Report

          No, the major concern for Essendon are the player charges to come, and

          – replacing those players if released without draft picks, and

          – those banned players taking up list spots and cap room if kept under contract.

          • Roar Guru

            August 28th 2013 @ 12:57pm
            Dogs Of War said | August 28th 2013 @ 12:57pm | ! Report

            Not to mention that players would sue for loss of earnings due to negligence by the club. It’s a big problem facing Cronulla who don’t have the financial power that Essendon has.

    • August 28th 2013 @ 8:51am
      jamesb said | August 28th 2013 @ 8:51am | ! Report

      What does an NRL fan think of AFL fiasco?

      That it could become an NRL fiasco very soon!

      • Roar Guru

        August 28th 2013 @ 9:20am
        ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:20am | ! Report

        I just spoke to a key Roosters figure and they had the Minor prem done and dusted until the Sharks wacked them on Mon.
        What about if the Sharks end up losing their points and Souths now win the MP?

        • August 28th 2013 @ 10:51am
          V.O.R. said | August 28th 2013 @ 10:51am | ! Report

          From Ian McCullough article on ROAR today on “the possibility of the Sharks winning the first premiership in their 46-year history would seem a worry for the code should the club subsequently face sanctions”….

          ““But Greenberg, who’s only been in his new role for less than month, insisted it’s a scenario that’s not being discussed in the corridors of power at Rugby League Central.”

          Maybe because they know the contents of today’s ASADA report?

          • Roar Guru

            August 28th 2013 @ 1:51pm
            ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 1:51pm | ! Report

            If Greenberg has not discussed it then he is telling fibs.

            • August 28th 2013 @ 2:28pm
              V.O.R. said | August 28th 2013 @ 2:28pm | ! Report

              …or negligent…I suspect the former….fibbing to keep a lid on things…..it would be unwise for the NRL not to have discussed some strategy should a team be removed while playing in the finals or being found guilty of cheating having won the premiership. I’d be very surprised if it hasn’t been discussed despite what Greenberg says.

        • August 28th 2013 @ 11:00am
          Mals said | August 28th 2013 @ 11:00am | ! Report

          Scott it would remain equal. Or if anything advantage to the Roosters because the first time they played the Sharks, the Sharks were missing key players.

          Souths -> played the Sharks twice. 1 won, lost 1. Combined points differential from both games = 0
          Roosters -> played the Sharks twice. 1 won, lost 1. Combined points differential from both games, Roosters +30

          • Roar Guru

            August 28th 2013 @ 1:53pm
            ScottWoodward.me said | August 28th 2013 @ 1:53pm | ! Report

            The first time they played they didnt have SBW.

            • August 28th 2013 @ 2:20pm
              Renegade said | August 28th 2013 @ 2:20pm | ! Report

              The Sharks didn’t have Gallen,Lewis, Tupou, Graham, Gibbs, Robson, Pomeroy, Ryan….. but yes the Roosters didn’t have SBW – OMG!

    • August 28th 2013 @ 9:16am
      Richo said | August 28th 2013 @ 9:16am | ! Report

      The NRL will continue to do nothing until ASADA intervenes. Remember, Cronulla’s drug use happened a year before Essendon’s and nothing has happened. Cronulla have admitted rorting the salary cap and nothing has happened. If Dankhad never switched codes, the NRL probably would never have found out about the Cronulla cheating. It is an amateur league which is only supported by very ignorant people.

      • August 28th 2013 @ 10:44am
        Jo said | August 28th 2013 @ 10:44am | ! Report

        No, Cronulla got fined for breaching the salary cap, this is public news..

        Mate, the NRL did well in waiting to see where the chips fall.. The AFL rushed in and made it all public and now they are all tangled in their words.

        Also it is well known that Demetriou and McLaclan tipped them off, as if they would let their indigenous amateur competition get tainted to that level.

        Mate, how is the NRL an amateur league? It is the best Rugby League competition in the world.. yes meaning Rugby League has more than one professional competition…

      • August 28th 2013 @ 11:15am
        Renegade said | August 28th 2013 @ 11:15am | ! Report

        What a load of rubbish.

        The sharks got fined for their salary cap breaches…. i suggest you go back to the AFL thread.

      • August 28th 2013 @ 1:20pm
        scribble said | August 28th 2013 @ 1:20pm | ! Report

        Whatever comes out about the Sharks, the NRL will hand out the appropriate penalties and wipe their hands clean. They don’t care what happens to the Sharks (unfortunate for them). Meanwhile the AFL is tangled up in a web of lies and corruption . One of their golden boys has been exposed as a cheat and just a downright grub of a person and now it looks like the AFL will have to defend itself for being too soft on Essendon. So which organisation is amateur?

      • August 28th 2013 @ 5:53pm
        Crosscoder said | August 28th 2013 @ 5:53pm | ! Report

        Richo ,you really need to do some research.The Sharks have been fined $150,000 for the 3rd party sponsorship,which initially went unreported and then was self reported by the club.So you are sprouting rubbish.
        You are also making presumptions because ASADA and the ACC have been looking into this for more than just a year,before the :blackest day”announcement.
        The coach also was not involved in backing the supplement program.
        The NRL have allowed ASADA to continue their investigations,and there has been none of the Sharks management ,bagging the NRL in a to and fro ,public slanging match,ripping into each other conflict ,as exhibited by the Essendon and the AFL.

        I suggest when you are describing ignorant people with regard to rl followers,perhaps you should check your own backyard down south. The glass house is looking rather exposed.