The Roar
The Roar


Roar Rookie

Joined August 2019







In his younger years Andrew tried his hand at Rugby League, Cricket, Squash, Soccer and Tennis. Upon realising he was rubbish at all of those switched his defeatist tendencies to following an assortment of teams that continue to frustrate him.



Hi Phil, I was mainly referring to the news corp journo’s. Specifically Phil Rothfield and Paul Crawley. It’s so far from actual journalism it’s not funny.

Is Ricky Stuart a weak, gutted coach or an old dog unable to learn any new tricks?

I actually watched the press conference with interest. Canberra had been comprehensively outplayed at home, after a week of selective leaks from “unnamed Canberra officials” who talked their own team up and their supposedly “arrogant” opponents down. An understrength Penrith team were about to be ambushed was the narrative.
Instead, after watching his team get completely outplayed, Ricky pulls out the old coaches’ trick and makes himself the story. But this is where it gets murky and downright ordinary. A coach with 20 years of NRL experience publicly and verbally piles into a 23 year-old with a handful of games behind him.
And the day after, his cheerleaders in the media, choose to excuse his behaviour as misguided passion and the actions of a father. If Ricky wanted to deflect from his own teams ineptitude, their were plenty of other ways to do it. But instead he used his platform to personally and publicly attack a 23-year old, who had just started his first game of the year. And today, he delivered the mother of all non-apologies.
Consider this as a contrast, in 2018 Jack Wighton went on a drunken rampage outside a Canberra nightclub, where he assaulted three people and urinated on one of them. He was given a suspended jail sentence and a fine. The NRL stood him down for 6 weeks and a further fine. Ricky stood by his player, describing his actions at the time as “out of character.”
By Ricky Stuart standards, Wighton deserved a second chance, yet apparently something Jaemon Salmon did as a 10-12 year-old, warrants Ricky’s eternal and public wrath. The NRL should take this seriously. It warrants a significant fine and a suspension until he both retracts the comments and delivers a public apology.

Is Ricky Stuart a weak, gutted coach or an old dog unable to learn any new tricks?

Great read Bernie! I can’t for the life of me understand the view that Hayden was overrated. His record in tests and one days speaks for themselves.
I always admired the way he coped with the disappointment of missing out to Slater in 93, then being dropped in 97 and each time went back to Shield cricket and essentially forced the selectors to pick him. Easily one of Australia’s greats!

Matthew Hayden wasn't overrated at all

I’m all for less disruption to the NRL season. Unfortunately if the 3rd standalone game after the season was a dead rubber, I doubt anyone would watch it.

Origin stuffs up the NRL, again

Great read Les and your passion for the club is obvious. There is an incredible paradox in sport administration in this country. On the one hand clubs such as Collingwood are significant organisations, employing hundreds of people, generating and spending millions in revenue each year. We’re quite rightly told they’re businesses requiring highly qualified directors. Yet these ‘businesses’ are run with such little transparency and are seemingly answerable to no one and definitely not the clubs supporters. Collectively, clubs such as Collingwood re so far removed from commercial reality it’s not funny.

A revolt ten black and white years in the making

Thanks DP. Any truth to the rumour Griffin is trying to pull Merrin out of retirement???

My take on Round 12

Thanks Albo. For two guys that were only there 2 years, Mortimer and Kelly had a lasting impact! Funny, I had that exact same thought about Wighton until he made an appearance with 10 to go.

My take on Round 12

Thanks souvalis. I’ll be sure to check it out.

My take on Round 12

Really interesting article Tim!
I’ve no doubt Peter V’landys loves the game. Unfortunately that and the fact he’s from Sydney seems to win over most of the NSWRL mafia. That highlights the problem and Sydney-centric approach of the game’s thinking and much of the commentary. He’s (apparently) done a great job at Racing NSW, he gave it the Victorians by launching the Everest, the richest race on turf and he loves rugby league so we love him!
The inaugural ARL commissioner, John Grant was a Queenslander, who brought in another outsider in David Smith, a man with an outstanding resume in the business world, to run the game as a business. Grant was rolled collectively by the Sydney clubs and Smith was never accepted precisely because he was an outsider.
Then Peter Beattie, again a Queenslander heaven forbid, is rolled along with Todd Greenberg because they dared try to invest in a standalone digital arm for the NRL, modelled on plenty of leagues around the world; and an investment that had the potential to weaken the grip of television networks. Naturally the likes of Foxsports hated that idea and campaigned endlessly about “head office excess.” PVL comes in, slashes the digital arm and immediately wins over the tv networks because it tied the NRL to them.
But seriously, if either Grant or Beattie were putting themselves out there and seemingly making decisions on behalf of the commission to the level of PVL, they would have been run out of town.
The commission as it stands basically bends on the whim of the chairman, while Abdo, the CEO and ‘captain’s pick’ as it seems, takes a backward seat. I’d argue, the transparency and governance of the game has gone backwards since Vlandy’s took over and his repeated thought bubbles are doing the game more harm than good.

Revolution or V’Landys: The only chances to get good leadership for the NRL

Good call Mp. I did forget Lomax who looks like a gun and hopefully he can get back soon. Perhaps a bit early to pass judgement on the others.
My point about the Dragons is they are running the club as though there on the verge of competing with the top teams. I think they’re closer to bottom four than top four.

A tale of two rebuilds: Dragons versus Bulldogs

Great article Dane! Can we also blame Channel 9 for insisting on keeping the Broncos on prime-time most weeks? Thus giving an even greater audience for their weekly on-field surrender?

Broncos crisis: Keep calm and blame one individual entirely

GH, my point is they rate well because they have a city of 3 million to themselves. They rate well in Queensland; yet Sydney and elsewhere… not so much. Sponsors want FTA exposure and the Broncos can deliver that to jersey sponsors. It’s an enormous commercial advantage that is the envy of the comp.
it’s a by-product of historical on-field success, but also of geography. On-field, they certainly haven’t earned that sort of leg-up over the past 18 months.
If we take the first 8 rounds of this season, including round 8 this weekend, the Broncos will have had 7 primetime Thursday and Friday games; last years two grand finalists, 5 each; Souths 4. It’s not in anyway reflective of performance.

Unfortunately for Broncos fans, a fish rots from the head

Pity towards the Broncos?
As someone who grew up in Brisbane, I absolutely relish the fact the Broncos have dwindled to such a laughing stock. The club has been characterised by arrogance and hubris since day 1. They get to play in a palace each week on incredibly generous commercial terms; get the rails run with match scheduling and have a city of 3 million to themselves. Don’t even get me started about the federal government (ie. taxpayers) paying for their “centre of excellence.” At least for the first 20 years of their existence they were able to back it up on the field. The fact it’s all falling apart and we still get to watch it unfold most Friday nights is just a bonus.

Unfortunately for Broncos fans, a fish rots from the head

Good analysis TPD. I think the Titans are travelling ok. I really think their finish to last year was a bit deceptive. While great to see them string some wins together, they were never going to play finals so their wasn’t a lot at stake in those games.
I think seven rounds in they’re in that mid-table group that is competing for the last few spots in the eight. They’re a bit behind the likes of Panthers, Rabbitohs, Roosters, etc; but at the same time are above the bottom four. The big test will come through July and August when the pressure builds and they need to beat those teams that are currently around them.
It is great to see them relevant again…

Are the Titans finals-bound? A critical view

Membership in the NRL is such a meaningless figure. NRL members have no ownership stake in the clubs. The majority of Sydney clubs are underwritten by leagues clubs so any funding shortfall in the football department is covered.
The other point to consider is membership numbers don’t always correlate to attendance. If we go way back to 2019 and pre-COVID; the Rabbitohs boasted close to 30,000 members, yet the average home crowd was between 15 and 16,000. Contrast that with the Titans who had less members (8,800) than they did numbers through the gate at home games (11,500).

A simple plan for NRL expansion

Honestly… I have to admit I pay no attention to any of the Foxsports shows and their crew of glorified gossip columnists, all full of agendas and eager for clickbait and seemingly desperate to make this story bigger than it is.
Here’s another take on what was really an innocuous incident in a game that had plenty of niggle… from both sides. Staines scores in the corner and as the Panthers players run from everywhere to celebrate, Liam Martin brushes Jarrod Croker who gives him a shove and not much else. Stephen Crichton, while looking elsewhere and having also run in to celebrate, bumps into Joe Tapine. Not realising he was waiting to come on to the field, Crichton suspects he’s hanging around the team huddle and foolishly drags him into the fray. Aside from a wayward Canberra trainer who grabs Fisher-Harris of all people. No harm done from either side and the game goes on.

You can’t hate the Panthers just because they’re good

Interesting perspective Peter, unfortunately I see T20 as causing the downfall of first class cricket. Witness only the short thrift given to the Sheffield Shield here in Australia in deference to the big bash. Where once young Australian players would spend their winters playing English country cricket, now the majority prefer to chase the riches on offer in various T20 leagues.
To your point about Washington Sundar, yes his experience in T20 no doubt helped him when under pressure on test debut. But who would you rather have leading your batting lineup? A batsman with 100-odd T20 games under his belt, or a Mikey Hussey type? Someone who had made over 10,000 first class runs before making his test debut?

How T20 cricket has enhanced Test cricket

Interesting article David. In the age of the future tours program and the supposed world test championship, the statistics around Australia’s test match opponents is staggering. the sad thing is that of the big 3, given our population and the dwindling number of players in comparison to the other two, it may not be long before we’re looking from the outside at the big 2!

The pandemic exposes cricket’s widening wealth divide

Thanks Larry, haven’t read Neale Daniher’s book but it’s on the list. I must admit I do enjoy reading books by managers. Alec Ferguson’s were good and Rod McQueen’s was a standout.

Three things I learned reading 'The Storm Within', the Cameron Smith autobiography

Hi Don, thanks for the comment and definitely not emotionally invested. However, while Easts may have Redcliffe beaten in terms of club revenue, I would emphasise that the Dolphins are well ahead in terms of other business income and assets. As 2020 has shown, leagues club grants are not always guaranteed.

The 17th NRL team? There’s only one answer

Thanks Emcie, you’re right I did neglect to include the Leprechaun’s though I think they’d be a distant fifth at the moment. The Western Corridor bid, though based in Ipswich is pushing a new entity in its entirety.. at this stage anyway.

The 17th NRL team? There’s only one answer

Watching that game last night I think the Roosters are cooked! It was an amazing effort to come back late, albeit assisted by the Panthers clocking off early a few times.
However, just seeing the emotion of Robinson in the coaches box, you just had the sense he knew just how badly the team needs a week off; to get that chance to regroup and recover before going again. I also had the sense some of the senior players knew it too. You definitely don’t win the premiership in the first final, but I suspect the Roosters lost their chance last night. I’m tipping the Raiders to win tonight and go onto knock the Roosters out next week.

Roosters take hope from late comeback

Really interesting perspectives and contrast of the top 8 teams. Still chuckling over that Phil Gould line from part 1.
One thought to ponder relates to the purpose of the club? Does it solely exist to win premierships? Or is it there to provide opportunities in community sport/give back to the community, etc? It’s an interesting contrast between perhaps a club like Penrith, with their junior networks and a newer team like the Storm. I’m not saying either is right or wrong, but they are clearly working with different priorities.

Makings of a champion: How the NRL top eight was built – Part 2

Wow. A definite pattern there. Fingers crossed it continues!

The omens pointing to a Panthers premiership in 2020

Well done to the Titans. He probably won’t win it but Justin Holbrook would be a worthy coach of the year winner. Taking the Titans from a team that snagged four wins and was barely competitive for the past few years to eight wins and possibly nine in a shortened season is an amazing achievement. I’ll back them in at home against a hot and cold Knights team to close out a successful season.

Eight talking points from NRL Round 19