Inspired by Israel Folau’s bold move to launch a ‘Go Fund Me’ campaign on Friday to assist him in the ‘battle of his life’ against Rugby Australia, a number of new pages have emerged over the weekend.
Covering a range of worthy causes these new posts create a dilemma for rugby fans, forcing them to choose between competing campaigns for which to part with their hard earned.
To assist, here is a step-by-step guide covering each campaign, along with the following general advice:
– all campaigns have been approved by Drew Mitchell
– South African Rand and Monopoly money are both not acceptable forms of currency
– there is no requirement on behalf of the recipient to use any money collected for its stated purpose, other than to provide the donor with a photo of any new house or Lamborghini purchased using their donation
– beware ‘fake’ or scam campaigns from people who purport to seek money for trivial things like medical expenses for children with terminal illness
– any person guilty of the sins of homosexuality, drunkenness, lying, supporting the Blues, fornication, idolation, thieving, and atheism, can absolve themselves of those sins by donating to any of the campaigns listed below. Particularly the final one, No.15.
In fact, anyone donating to campaign 15 please feel free to have an extra drink, curse and shag with the neighbour, right now, on the house.
Campaign 1. Tolu Latu, seeking $7,500, to pay for Uber fares over the next six months.
Campaign 2. Wallabies coach Michael Cheika, seeking $500, to purchase a new set of state of the art, noise-cancelling headphones, so that he doesn’t have to listen to Scott Johnson and Michael O’Connor tell him that judicious selection and a game plan other than ‘give it all of your guts’, is required to win the World Cup.
Campaign 3. Rugby Australia, seeking $1m, to fund a literacy program whereby all contracted players are taught to understand the meaning of simple phrases. Let’s say, for example, “There’s no ‘I’ in team. But there’s an ‘I’ in Israel”; or, “If was hurting Rugby Australia I would walk away from my contract, immediately.”
Campaign 4. Rugby Australia, seeking $250, to double their 2018 marketing investment in the NRC.
Campaign 5. The City of Buenos Aries, seeking $125,000 to erect a statue of Glenn Jackson, he who cannot be corrupted, in the middle of Avenida 9 de Julio.
Campaign 6. Egon Seconds, seeking $5,000 to visit the Nine Network TV Studios in Sydney, to learn that ‘20 to 1’ is a cheap, low-brow television show, not an instruction on how to referee visiting teams to South Africa.
Campaign 7. Sharks coach Robert du Preez, seeking $1,500 for a lifetime supply of cockroach spray.
Campaign 8. Nick Phipps, seeking $240, for a new sheep suit and horse suit, so he can complete the full barnyard set.
Campaign 9. Tourism Japan, seeking $1.2m, to ensure that ambulant public rest-room facilities at all Japan’s airports are upgraded prior to the start of the World Cup, including new locks and soundproofing.
Campaign manager’s note: Thank you A Smith, Dunedin, NZ for your kind donation of $100,000
Campaign 10. NZ Rugby, seeking $85,000 to fund a new series of IVF treatments for Robyn and Kevin Barrett, in time for them to produce another litter, and lock in the All Blacks as World Cup winners in 2043.
Campaign 11. Tom Robertson seeking $245 for a hairstyling makeover, to prevent him being stopped on the street, mistaken for German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Campaign 12. The Italian Rugby Union, fresh from having scuttled World Rugby’s Nations League proposal out of fear of being forced to play promotion/relegation in future years, seeking $25,000, for purchase of a new yellow playing strip.
Campaign 13. The Queensland Reds, seeking $37,500, for purchase of copious amounts of cotton wool with which to wrap Jordan Petaia in.
Campaign 14. Taniela Tupou, seeking $1m, as annual salary, and to enroll in remedial biomechanical training, to ensure that his arm wraps around as his shoulder connects in the tackle, not lag as an afterthought.
Campaign manager’s note: This campaign is now fully subscribed, thank you Rugby Australia.
Campaign 15. Rugby writer Geoff Parkes, seeking $500k, to purchase a new driver that simultaneously adds 30m in length off the tee and keeps the damn ball on the short grass. And for travel expenses relating to personal testing of said driver on the fairways of Pebble Beach, Pinehurst, Augusta National, Kapalua, Royal County Down, St Andrews, Carnoustie, Cape Kidnappers, Royal Edithvale, and a host of other world-renowned golf courses.
Writer’s note: Please do it people, I am in the battle of my life here, my old driver isn’t cutting the mustard any more.
While some people filled their weekend mesmerized by watching Folau’s total pledges tick ever higher, others more gainfully filled their schedules with four excellent Super rugby quarter-finals.
The Crusaders retain home-ground advantage and favourite status for the title after an impressive 38-14 win over the Highlanders.
Impressive because the Highlanders didn’t roll over, only a lazy shoulder by Liam Squire self-detonating any realistic chance that they had of winning.
But impressive also because the Crusaders clinically took that numerical advantage and made it work for them. And because no matter how well opposition sides manage to stop them playing for periods of a match, they have the mental strength and self-belief to faithfully stick to their systems, and invariably break those sides down through relentless efficiency and the pace at which they operate.
The Hurricanes did enough in the first half to withstand a brave and honest challenge from a very well-balanced Bulls side, 35-28.
The Bulls are the template for South African rugby in this era – large, combative and abrasive up front, with full command of scrum and lineout, a clever playmaker who is a sharpshooter for goal but much more than that, and pace and clever stepping on the outside.
Not many believe that the Hurricanes have a chance in Christchurch, but Dane will niggle, Ardie will wrestle everything in sight, and TJ will whistle and commentate, so it will be great fun watching them try.
After the Chiefs had edged ahead before half-time, the Jaguares ramped up the quality meter after the break, before dialing in a superb defensive effort to snuff out a late Chiefs rally, by 21-16.
The championship quarter was punctuated by stinging individual hits and impressive team discipline, although it must be said that the Chiefs contributed to their own demise via sloppy handling and a questionable decision to keep battering away at the Jaguares line, in close.
The Jaguares reward is a home semi-final against the impressive Brumbies, who were a class above the du Preez family and hangers-on, winning comfortably, 38-13.
The Brumbies bookended the match with incisive running and support play, Pete Samu unfortunately blowing out a hamstring in what was a highly energetic performance, his best since last year’s $50,000 Go Fund Me campaign to extricate him from the Crusaders.
Not for the first time this year the Sharks demonstrated a disinclination to take on their opponent directly, instead angling their attacks towards the sideline, and running their backline plays through a ‘second man’ standing so deep that the Brumbies defence had no trouble adjusting to wherever any potential threat might be posed.
Decidedly not the template for South African rugby in this era!
Jaguares versus Brumbies is a dream match-up, the Brumbies with the competition benchmark set piece, but the Jaguares improving their line-out, with both sides very strong defensively, and inventive and slippery in the backs.
For now it is the Brumbies who are left to fly the flag for Australian rugby, with the Australian Under 20s narrowly missing out on the world title in Rosario, pipped 24-23 by reigning champions, France.
There are many reasons behind the satisfying performance of this side, but one that stands out is the co-operation of the Super Rugby franchises to ensure that their squad players were released for a prescribed period, to allow the tournament squad to develop to its full potential.
If only all participants in Australian rugby could comprehend what benefits potentially accrue when people co-operate and work together.
Meanwhile it’s back to the drawing board for New Zealand, whose U20s performance this year was notably uninspiring.
If this can’t be quickly remedied through old-fashioned means such as better talent identification, selection and coaching, perhaps NZ Rugby can look to adopt the modern way of dealing with one’s own, self-inflicted problems – start a Go Fund Me page and ask other people to pay to fix things up.