The Roar
The Roar

Ben Pobjie

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Joined August 2011

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Ben Pobjie is a writer and comedian whose promising rugby career was tragically cut short the day he stopped playing rugby and had a pizza instead. The most he has ever cried was the day Balmain lost the 1989 grand final. Today he enjoys the frolics of Wallabies, Swans, baggy greens, and Storm.

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The Trans-Tasman conundrum, solved

There’s been a lot of talk lately about the best way forward for Australian rugby teams in terms of a Trans-Tasman competition, given that early results in this year’s tournament have been eerily akin to watching a silverback gorilla repeatedly slamming a chihuahua’s head in a car door.

Absolutely Joe! But I don’t think any Origin debutant ever feels carefree

NSW picking Mitch Moses is a wasted opportunity

There’s no such thing as a zero pressure Origin game.

NSW picking Mitch Moses is a wasted opportunity

What may stop NSW dominating for many years hence is the fact Queensland have young guns on the horizon. Ponga and Walsh and Walker and Grant will make for a powerful spine in years to come. Looking forward to some cracking contests.

Six talking points from State of Origin Game 2

Oh, I am a hard core Balmain supporter – I feel vaguely embarrassed at claiming Artie as one of ours!

The true blue Queenslanders

Minor quibble: calling Beetson a “Balmain legend” seems a bit off, as he played the bulk of his career with Easts, and captained them to two premierships.

The true blue Queenslanders

Beat me to it…

The true blue Queenslanders

I think those who defend the booing of Adam Goodes have yet to explain the timing.

But I’m not that interested in arguing, as above. I’d just love everyone to think about Goodes, and what happened, and what that might mean.

Thinking about Goodes

Which is passing strange, because it’s more like a heinous act performed by pretty much every Australian Rules footballer who ever played.

Thinking about Goodes

You’re no doubt right, Gyfox. My mistake.

Thinking about Goodes

I don’t even think it’s a bad call. Almost always, when someone says Queensland’s team is rubbish, they’re 100 percent correct. But still it always results in a crushing Queensland victory…

The Maroons are awful and the Blues are going to take the series 3-0

Nope. Next.

The change I'd make to the knock-on rule

See, this is the kind of article that gets written directly before a stirring Queensland win and now I’m terrified.

The Maroons are awful and the Blues are going to take the series 3-0

Who was picked out of position apart from Capewell for Queensland? Both NSW centres were out of position but seemed to do ok.

Six talking points from State of Origin Game 1

To be honest the only way to get his approval in reality would be a Goodbye Lenin style arrangement where an elaborate infrastructure is built to convince him that he is the Wallabies coach again.

The Trans-Tasman conundrum, solved

I mean, if you can suggest a way in which anything I write *would* fix Australian rugby, I will write it.

The Trans-Tasman conundrum, solved

Dane, much of this article seems factually inaccurate. Disappointing.

Flanagan fighting for recall as Bulldogs scapegoat

All be it indeed

Some gentle advice for commentators

I guess also complicating things was that there were a few years when Kimmorley was VERY good. And though it’s a long time ago now, no, I reckon that between Elias and Buderus for NSW – or Walters and Buderus/Smith for Australia – there weren’t a lot of really brilliant hookers demanding selection. Maybe my memory is faulty. Toovey might’ve been the best hooker of that period, once he made the switch.

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

Alex, the situation was basically: you have two players – for example, Johns and Kimmorley – who are both outstanding, and the team will be better with both of them, but they play the same position. At the same time, there is no particular standout hooker who demands a spot. Johns is better than Kimmorley, but also more versatile – he can play more than one position and Kimmorley can’t. The team is better with both in than it would be with just one plus whoever is the least worst option at hooker. So you pick both and you put the more versatile player out of normal position.

Another situation, as another commenter described, was when Johns and Toovey were picked at hooker and half, but for most of the game Johns played half and Toovey hooker, despite their jumper numbers.

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

Hayne should’ve been better than Inglis. He could’ve been better than Inglis, had he not decided to tilt at windmills at his peak.

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

Margaret Court????????????????

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

Rob, interesting your pal brought up that last ball to Viv. Great moment of course, but I’m sure Dennis himself can think of more impressive balls he bowled than the wide half volley that got a wicket purely through the batsman’s recklessness.

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

The reason Johns got picked out of position was never that there was a better half than him, it was that he could play hooker better than the second best half, and the team was better with both of them in. When he played hooker he just went wherever he liked anyway.

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

Rob I go for Lillee pretty much just because of how he’s rated by the guys who played with and against him. But it’s a hair’s breadth between him and McGrath. However, if you took Thomson in 74-75 or Johnson in 13-14 you could safely say not even Lillee or McGrath ever made batsmen hate facing them more. The difference is batsmen ALWAYS hated facing Lillee and McGrath.

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

Mushi, good observation about Meninga. If one watches particularly footage of the first half of his career, he would turn defences inside out with speed and swerve as much as using his size. Of course he could always monster you if he had to.

Cameron Smith finally announces retirement

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