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Paul

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Joined October 2017

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great player, Brian Moore

Naden calls out alleged racism

In a lot of decades of watching Rugby League, I’ve never been able to work out why people think they have to right to yell out ANY sort of abuse at players. Thee excuse that “I’ve paid me money, I can say what I like” doesn’t cut it.

These clowns wouldn’t have the courage to say anything abusive to any NRL players face, yet are brave enough to say what ever from behind a fence.

They need educating in a simple truth; if you don’t like what you’re seeing, leave the ground. Hurling abuse is not going to make a guy play better or worse and, in this day & age, could see you end up with big fines or maybe some quality time in gaol.

Naden calls out alleged racism

I agree about your comments re the forwards not doing their job, making life hard for the backs, but Norman, SOO player, should be doing more. He shown he can on occasion, but simply not often enough.

What a week to be a Dragons fan

That was quick. Do a “Pangai” on a player. I like that.

I guess the Dragons did something similar to their coach, forcing Mary to select via committee, which led to his resignation.

What a week to be a Dragons fan

Agreed. We have a tough run home, playing 4 likely finals bound teams in the coming weeks. If we knock them off and beat the teams below us on the ladder, I’d have thought Young was short odds to stay as coach.

Not that I can see that happening mind you.

What a week to be a Dragons fan

The reason for the size of the squads is coverage, Jon. If you look back to last years Ashes, Australia could draw on guys from just about anywhere, but obviously with the travel & quarantine restrictions in place at present, that’s not possible. They’re just trying to cover all bases.

COVID-19 won’t stop England series as Australia announce squad for UK tour

yep, there would have been a few that would have made family members blush, I suspect.

What a week to be a Dragons fan

I think this is your best piece in this series so far Matt. Maybe that’s because there are so many recognisable names, but the anecdotes are terrific. The p****ed-off guy from Gympie cutting down the goal posts is a classic.

I don’t think people in NSW knew just how good the game was in Qld. Sure they knew about the players who moved south of the border to play in Sydney, but they didn’t get the same coverage of the Club games that were terrific to watch.

History of Brisbane Rugby League: Warning signs, 1970s

I think the Eels next 4 games won’t be easy. They’ll certainly want to lift their intensity if they’re going to seriously factor in the finals.

Eels face rough race for top two

I see so many parallels between the Broncos and the Dragons. On paper, both have squads that should be challenging for finals spots, but aren’t. Both have players on huge money that have done little or nothing for their Clubs in recent seasons. Both have Boards that are struggling to admit they’ve made some serious errors in who they’ve chosen to coach their teams and both have made some dubious selections in the past few seasons.

Each NRL Club is a business and, with any business, success or failure starts at the top. The CEO & Board have made plenty of mistakes, but like the Dragons, need to won up to their errors and do what ever it takes to remedy the problem. If that means a new CEO and a revamped Board, so be it. Once the business side of things is stable, then start looking at coaches, playing rosters recruitment & retention, etc.

This season is a write-off for the Broncos, but there’s time for the CEO & Board to get their acts together, so they can turn things around in 2021.

Dear Brisbane Broncos, the coach isn't the problem

A really good summary Andrew.

I wonder what was going through Mary’s mind as the siren sounded and he knew his boys had beaten one of the premiership favorites. Words like “if only” come to mind.

There’s only one comment I’d pick up on; ‘ The Dragons are now closer to a premiership than Newcastle.” I think the Club is in limbo at present, as far as winning a premiership’s concerned. We don’t have a coach for next year, have no idea who else might leave and even though we appear to have money to buy some quality players, I can’t see too many beating down the Dragon’s doors to come and play with us.

I agree we have some very encouraging signs, but I’d like to see the guys finish off this season playing positive footy, then find the right coach, get a decent, committed squad together and see what next year brings.

What a week to be a Dragons fan

There might be a reason why he writes for the Telegraph, Andrew. That paper seems to rely on sensationalist crap to fill it’s sports pages, especially rugby league.
I haven’t read that piece but now I know what sort of rubbish this guy is prepared to write, I won’t be reading his articles any time soon.

'My gosh!' The insane, seriously ballsy last-minute play that sealed a famous Saints win

Stoinis was a huge liability for us in the WC last year, Joshua. He tends t take a long time (relatively) to get going, chewing up a lot of deliveries. That’s fair enough at the top of the order but not so much, where he’s been batting ( 6 or 7).

He won’t get a look in at 1, 2 or 3, so he misses out.

COVID-19 won’t stop England series as Australia announce squad for UK tour

Nice story, Arnab. I think Alam was rewarded for that moustache. It’s a beauty!

Hope he gets going in Pakistan’s second innings

Fawad Alam's reward for hard work and patience

I’m not sure I understand the point of this piece, except to bag a guy who got a duck, not having played any serious cricket for well over 6 months.

So what if he has an ungainly stance, so did a bloke named Chanderpaul. Yes he got a 4 ball duck, but another Pakistan batsman named Shan Masood made one run more and lasted 1 ball more. Was he ready for Southampton?

If Pakistan has better batting options, why aren’t they using them? Clearly the selectors think he’s their best choice for now and hopefully he gets plenty of runs in the second innings.

Was Fawad Alam ready for Southampton?

A very good article Bernie. You’ve pointed out one ludicrous part of the current way the Laws are handled, ie batsmen being given out or not out, even though the ball hit the stumps at the same place in different innings, but the other ludicrous thing I can’t get my head around is players effectively having to be umpires, but not being able to do that through an entire innings.

Captains now have to become umpires and decide they know when an umpire has erred. That’s almost an impossibility for things like lbws, but I’d suggest the bulk of reviews are because the ball hit the pads. So now they’re not only captaining this sides, they’re unofficial umpires as well.

But they’re only umpires as long as they have reviews left. Why? The real umpires are still going to make howlers once the reviews have been used up as we saw in the Ashes last year. Paine has been soundly bagged for his captaincy at Edgebaston, but I’ll bet few can remember the name of the umpire who made such a poor lbw decision, which caused much of Paine’s pain.

If all lbws are going to be reviewed, then two things should happen. The first is there should be no captains reviews. As you rightly point out, the other types of dismissals are invariably referred anyway, so why would the captain need a review?

The other thing that has to happen is the enforcement of Laws around frivolous appeals when the ball hits the pads. I agree the third umpire shouldn’t take long to give the umpire a signal, but if the spinners are operating at both ends, it will still slow the game down.

At the least, your idea or something similar should be trialled at Shield level. If it works and I suspect it would, Benaud’s words ring true. Umpires can do their jobs and let the players play.

DRS needs to be reviewed: Here's how to do it

Terrific story Barry. You’re right, it would take a pretty exceptional team to beat them.

I think in many ways, being a professional footballer has helped extend many careers, too. Yes the guys are bigger, the game is faster etc, but way back when, a lot of guys called time on their careers, often because of pressures from their other job. Throw in a few injuries that are now treatable and plenty of guys are still out there doing good things, many of whom would have had to hang up the boots, in years gone by.

The NRL's golden oldies

I think it comes down to mindset and while Collingwood & Petersen were going along, they batted almost arrogantly. I’m sure they felt they were well on top when they looked at the scoreboard and saw the 2 best bowlers in world cricket, have one wicket between them for 274 runs at well over 3 runs an over.

Remember too, for 4 days, England were well on top of Australia. It took an exceptional effort to win that Test and part of the reason why England were shattered was because they knew they couldn’t get close to matching it if that Aussie side went up a gear, which they did on that last day.

Forgotten efforts from famous Test players: Part 2

There a key element that people seemed to have missed when commenting on this proposal. This effectively takes a lot of power away from the Clubs and gives it to the NRL. Right now, the Clubs almost have open slather on what they’re going to pay someone, as evidenced by the SBW example. If this idea gained traction, that would be next to impossible, which not only helps even out the comp, but also moves the power base from the Clubs to Abdo and co.

It also means issues around transparency and salaries disappear, assuming the formula used to calculate player points becomes public knowledge. This also whittles away at Clubs power because the only bargaining chip they’d have left is third party agreements.

I think this suggestion has merit, though as others point out, there are some warts that need removing. That said, I can only see the Clubs being vehemently opposed to it. They’ve had decades of being able to play fast & loose with salary cap dollars and this change severely reins them in. I don’t think they’ll like that one bit.

A really good article Daniel, certainly thought provoking.

The player point system needs to replace the salary cap

Question then. When should he have declared, assuming of course the Poms were not all out?

550 should have been enough to at least draw the game, but as Bernie mentioned, the Poms batted way too defensively on that last morning. Throw in that shocker Strauss copped and they dug a hole for themselves.

PS I’m sure they were tired but I don’t think the Poms were demoralised. They’d managed to take all 10 Aussie wickets and held a first innings lead. Going out to bat a second time, they’d have fancied their chances of batting for a day and keeping Australia in the field.

Forgotten efforts from famous Test players: Part 2

good call. He also did it wearing a jumper!

Forgotten efforts from famous Test players: Part 2

I thought Flintoff’s declaration was actually the right call, Your Holiness. The Aussies were 3 for 65 at one stage in their first innings and I seem to recall a jubilant Tony Greig crowing about the hurt England were going to put on the Aussies. It took some exceptional cricket by all 11 Australians to win that game on the last day.

Forgotten efforts from famous Test players: Part 2

You almost lost me in your first three paragraphs, Muhammad. I don’t think Test cricket has lost it’s charm at all. Look a the numbers that turned up to watch the Ashes last year. Look at the quality of the contest between Archer & Smith, the courage of Labuschagne, the heroics of Stokes and tell me Tests have lost their charm or magic.

The main issues, apart from a lack of batsmen with the right technique to succeed in Tests, is the costs for people to attend a days play and the need for instant gratification many seem to want. I’ve not been to a Test in the big States for ages, but recall many complaining about the price of everything when they did go to Perth, Sydney, etc.

I’m also wondering if you’re asking the right question? To me, the issue isn’t about whether a Test should last 5 days, but whether we are watching good hard Test cricket AND getting a result. I recall the last Ashes Test at the MCG which went the distance. It was simply boring. I compare that with the First Test the Windies won and the last Test Pakistan lost and there were moments in both games that were as good as it gets at Test level.

If batsmen can tighten their technique but still play attractive cricket and the games are tight, I think Test cricket’s still in a good place – if they’d bring the costs down.

Why Test matches are finishing within four days

Another good article, Tiger.

I think the real reason why Davidson’s effort in India isn’t better remembered was a lack of coverage. Sure India were relative cricket minnows, but there was virtually no way of knowing what was going on in Kanpur, except through the papers.

It’s also nice to see you writing about those few wickets Warne took in Sri Lanka. They were vital to an Australian victory in that game, gave Warne confidence and showed AB he was not a complete washout at Test level. The rest, as they say, is history.

Forgotten efforts from famous Test players: Part 2

We won’t know till some time next season. I’m sure all will have an opinion about who should get the job, but until the team actually plays under that coach,we’re not to know if the choice is a good or bad one. Right now, as the Americans would say,it’s a crap shoot.

Paul McGregor resigns as Dragons coach