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Geoff Parkes

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Joined October 2012

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Geoff is a Melbourne based sports fanatic and writer, who started contributing to The Roar in 2012, originally under the pen name Allanthus. His first book, A World in Conflict; the Global Battle For Rugby Supremacy was released in Dec 2017 to critical acclaim. For details on the book visit www.geoffparkes.com Meanwhile, his twin goals of achieving a single figure golf handicap and owning a fast racehorse remain tantalisingly out of reach.

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His kicking was really poor, both his drop-kick restarts, and penalty line kicks that went 10-15m.

Looked like a golfer who hadn’t played for a few months, struggling to find the centre of the club face.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Humans seem to be less adept at learning from history than we should be Tony, but let’s hope not!

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

I used to play midweek comp for North Sydney, Hugh. We’d have a few late nights, depending on where we were drawn, but it was highly enjoyable.

Sunday afternoons we’d sit on the bank at North Sydney Oval and watch the Bears, (Larson, Moore, Florimo etc… and Daryl Halligan nailing them from everywhere), then stroll over the road for a regular 5.00pm Sunday social squash comp followed by beer and pizza. That centre got sold to a developer and closed down years ago, for apartments.

I still remember the day the owner of the squash centre, a lady called Phyllis, stood up on a chair and, tears streaming down her face, announced that it was closing, and said, Jeff Fenech style, “I love youse all”.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

I think we’re saying much the same thing, soapit.

The commentators got a bit confused, thinking that foul play overrules a prior penalty. That’s correct, but the referee didn’t deem it to be foul play, just a penalty. He would have had to have given Perofeta a YC for his act to override the first penalty offence by the Reds.

Because he didn’t, the penalty against Perofeta merely stopped the advantage, and he went back for the first penalty.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

I didn’t actually realise that Kerry had won this year’s league mz, so there you go!
Load up for next year as well. Green and gold all the way!

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Have you got some inside info, Chris?
I’m expecting Kerevi to be the second man picked, behind the captain.

Not so sure about Cooper just yet, but we’ll find out in a few weeks.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Well observed, Ed.

I don’t know exactly, but I think what Hamish McLennan was trying to say is that this is an opportunity to keep emerging players in rugby and also attract some who have gone to NRL back into rugby – off the back of a general positive vibe and the genuine international aspect of the sport.

As opposed to him saying that RA will target individuals right now, that will go straight into the Wallabies with the promise of playing in a WC final.

At least that’s what I hope he was meaning…? It’s not so bad if a Wallabies coach has a relationship with a league player or targets a particular position and player, but the idea that an administrator might determine as a general policy (or thought bubble) that they’ll splash cash and try to improve the side that way, makes little sense.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

I’m sure many of us on here used to play Squash in its heyday in the 80’s and 90’s, Hugh.

For various reasons, and by comparison to those times, the sport is close to ‘dead’. But I can’t imagine anyone going on to internet forums to find squash fans to rub their noses in it.

Everyone’s entitled to an opinion, but really, if you can’t add anything fresh or constructive, sometimes those opinions are better left inside.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

I got the feeling he was auditioning for The Roar Rugby Podcast, Jacko.
Although Harry would have his work cut out with him – he’s one chilled dude.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

To be clear scrum, neither Frankly or myself is advocating for a reserve comp to be run concurrently with SR.

I was only making the point that there have been ‘A’ matches during this season.
The time to do it is definitely after SR and club rugby has finished.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Nice post RT, albeit quite brief by your standards! 😛

I agree, it’s quite apparent that we’ve had a lot more competitive TT matches this year, and the competition is better for it.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

I wouldn’t be reading anything deliberate into the scheduling woodart, but yes, you’d have to think that the obvious play was to schedule this match to be played in Suva, and next year, in Apia.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Great observation, DA. The idea that players can come on with 3-4 minutes to go and change the course of the game is hard to follow.

In most cases, this is more about giving players caps – a ‘reward’ for having been named in the 23 and getting kitted up.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Understand the concern about the McDermott/Perofeta one mz, but play it again at normal speed and it’s clear to me that Perofeta could not reasonably have anticipated McDermott jumping like he did, and taken a different course of action.

These things always look worse in slow motion.

This wasn’t like a standard jump and kick receipt. The emphasis has now changed when it comes to players jumping into tackles, and imo I think the referee in this case got it right.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

That’s essentially my thinking, Frankly, mostly because we’re almost at that situation now.

It’s not visible to many fans, but those sides more or less exist today, and have been playing some scratch games in the background, just not as part of a competition and, as you say, not quite at the right time of the season.

This is also where some of the assistant SR coaches get the opportunity to step up as head coaches, and there are also obvious benefits from keeping the same group of players and coaches in the same system at each franchise.

One potential downside is that the competition would be limited to 6 teams, but I think that’s still a better outcome than adding on a couple of other constructed sides, and in the process, watering down the franchises and losing some of those continuity benefits.

Aside from money, the reluctance to proceed with this is based on a desire within RA to be more connected with and tap into, some of that tribalism and support for club rugby. But I’m just not sure how a hybrid solution can work without creating winners and losers, or uneasy alliances.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Good point about depth, Rhys, and while you don’t mention him specifically, it’s no wonder that Taniela Tupou is eyeing off a contract in Japan, where he’d not only get more money, but not have to be the guy playing 75 minutes every week, carrying a forward pack on his shoulders.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

The spiritual heart of Moana Pasifika lies in Auckland, KP.
Bryan Williams, Michael Jones and others… and while there is a healthy PI population in Melbourne, the community is nothing like what it is in Auckland.

I don’t think you can go and successfully relocate a team like that, when it has grown organically out of a local community.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Heem’s an interesting one for me, Highlander. I’ve always seen him as someone who can be a bit tentative into contact, sometimes a bit fumbly, someone not quite fulfilling what he promises.

But yes, that was a very convincing performance, especially getting thrown in early like that.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

I love MP and the Drua as much as the next person, scrum.
They’re a breath of fresh air for the competition, and both have preformed better than I thought was possible for their first year.

But that game was low standard and awful to watch, and it should be no problem for commentators to call it for what it was.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

A highly marketable ‘x-factor’ player would be great for the Tahs, Sailosi – on and off field.

Someone like Matera is turning out to be for the Crusaders, or like what Potgeiter was under Cheika.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Hodge was conscious of the time and – just like he did on half-time – tried to run the clock down, so I don’t think he can be criticised.

But yes, that was silly play not to retain possession under advantage, so close to the try line. Refs will always allow multiple phases in those situations.

One thing we see time and time again with sides that are in development, is, when they’re at the bottom of the cycle, an inconsistency in performance – hammered one week, competitive the next – as they build up sufficient player depth and experience. And then next thing, after they learn how to be more competitive, they need to learn how to win, under the pressure of a match situation.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

In cold hard terms, the difference between the Canes winning and losing was Franks and Mafileo coming on to steady the scrum, OB. Without that, the Tahs could easily have been another 10 points ahead and too far out of sight.

Credit too to the coaching team for making the change when they did, and not waiting until half-time or after, which would have been the original plan.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

It was ‘Hail Mary’ time with that drop-out James, but yeah, if he had his time again, I’m sure Holloway would hand the ball to a teammate a little more adept at the art. It took a special effort to make it go backwards.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

Agree, Sailosi. There isn’t a truer saying than the one about ‘things are never as good or as bad as they appear’.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

It’s no co-incidence that when RA shifted HQ to Moore Park, Woolfe, La Grillade restaurant in Crows Nest, started to turn south…

But that’s a while ago now. Not sure that the long, boozy lunch stereotype has applied to RA for some time – although it clearly doesn’t stop people believing it.

The Wrap: The light at the end of Australian rugby’s tunnel isn’t an oncoming train after all

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