The Roar
The Roar

MG Burbank

Roar Guru

Joined February 2012

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Live on the front foot! Greatest match? Australia v Great Britain, 2nd Test, 1990- Meninga scoring in the last minute to keep hope alive of winning the series.

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Johnno, you’re romanticizing the past. Look at average crowd numbers: they were almost the same as they are now, if a little smaller. So more people did not want to be there.
But I do agree; the size of the players is a problem, as is the controlled football. I still think the best games today are better than in years past due to the enhanced skill this generation of players has.
One of the problems is we have too many rounds and too many teams making the playoffs, which means games don’t have the stakes they had up until 1994 when it was a Top 5 system. It’s amazing to think that between 1988 and 1994, only FIVE out of 16 teams made the finals, and there were only 22 rounds. We need to get back to fewer rounds, especially if we’re going to have a top 8.

The NRL must continue to experiment

What I stated was that teams receiving the ball inside their own 20 could get a restart, so that would solve the problem of continual restarts. Also, if a team has to get creative because they’re being buried in their own half, that’s a GOOD thing. Why should they be able to rely on forward runs to halfway to have success?

The NRL must continue to experiment

Jay, how many teams reach halfway before third tackle has been made? I’m sure the stats back me up; not very many at all, because teams are grinding to the halfway to get a kick in. How else do you propose to incentivize playing attacking football in your own half? This would promote ball movement in the defensive part of the field. I’m open to a better idea if you have one.

The NRL must continue to experiment

BBT, the stats on the average speed of the play-the-ball show it has slowed down. I’d agree with you regarding games from the 70s and early to mid-80s but since then it’s been fairly quick. We’re not talking about taking the game back to the 80s- I much prefer the game now- we’re talking about grappling and jiu-jitsu out. Simple. Wrestling doesn’t have to be part of the game but the only way to get rid of it is to penalise any form of grappling, lying on the man or holding down beyond the ‘held’ call.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

Ian, that’s interesting but there’s more occasions when the tacklers wrestle without looking around. We don’t need to see them look around- just penalise them the INSTANT they don’t begin to move.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

Riot, that’s why the pocket referee will be right there calling held, not the lead ref who’s standing at least 10 or 15 metres away.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

No Liatrevlis- Bill Harrigan is considered by almost every player and commentator to be the finest referee this game has produced. Yes he has a big ego but one thing is certain: he wouldn’t have put up with the kind of crap Mick Ennis was throwing at the ref the other night. And he wouldn’t be afraid to implement my suggestion on the ‘held’ call. Give me a strong-willed referee any day of the week. Ask most players and they’ll tell you they liked playing under Harrigan.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

Spot on, Fairy.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

Not true Johnnyball. I’m not suggesting we have to go back to Super League, where it was 5 dummy half runs and a try every set. The players don’t have to sprint off the tackled player but they do have to begin MOVING. That’s the difference. The ball carrier would also have to stand up and play the ball- something that didn’t happen in Super League; you had guys basically playing the ball off the ground.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

No Legless, it’s completely independent of how big the defensive corridor is but if you’re worried about it becoming touch football then yes, the NRL should be open to adjusting that.
On the subject of reduced interchange, I am a HUGE fan of limiting it to 6 but remember: in 1986 there was a tryless grand final and there were only 4 interchanges if my memory serves me correctly. That won’t solve this but it will be a huge help.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

Also, if teams want to gang tackle, each defender needs to be moving as soon as he can. That’s not happening now.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

Yes it will work Liatrevlis. Quite easily. The rule can be simple: “defenders must move IMMEDIATELY upon hearing the held call. Immediately is not open to interpretation, and even if it is- EVERY rule is open to interpretation, like the 10 metres. That doesn’t mean we can’t strive for its implementation in every tackle.

NRL flies the white flag on wrestling

Josh, please tell me where I’m wrong. Making a common sense point doesn’t qualify a piece for ‘worst article’ rating. Easy to throw stones but I’d be more interested in hearing why you disliked the article so much.

Tedesco loss is the Tigers fault

No, Will, not all over the place- just common sense. Your response deserves a reply, however- if for no other reason than to try to make sense of what you’re saying.

On the one hand you claim the club can’t afford to pay the market price for Tedesco, yet on the other hand you’re saying the Tigers could poach players if they stopped developing talent. Doesn’t make sense. Also, if it’s not a ‘nil-sum’ game, as you put it, then you’re basically agreeing with me: Mayer could have used some of his development funds to keep Tedesco. Either way he stuffed up.

The idea that it costs more to develop young players than it does to purchase an established player is patent nonsense. Really? Tedesco went to Canberra for $600k, correct? it costs six hundred thousand dollars a year to develop a player? Will, don’t believe everything you hear.

You mention that there are clubs that have figured this out and it reflects in their recruitment policy. There’s only one club that regularly buys established stars without a junior base: the Roosters. If you know your league history (I grew up in the area), the club has not had a junior base for a long time, due to changing demographics. Who are the other clubs you’re speaking of? Every other club has developed players up and down its roster from its feeder clubs, including the Storm.

Regarding the NRL, please name one ‘marquee player’ they have ‘thrown’ money at. Zero. Dave Smith is in his early days on the job and junior development has been highlighted as a major priority by the new administration. This is an entirely different topic to a club’s ability to retain its star juniors.

Yes, the Raiders are using Tedesco as a marquee player. You say it’s a risk ‘after only 25 games’. Not a risk if the player is already proving to be an elite talent. The Tigers could have done the same.

You say it would be irresponsible for the Tigers to spend beyond their means. Please tell me how much cap room they still have. I suspect not much. They ARE spending the money, just not in the right places. Of course they’re not as wealthy as the Bulldogs or Broncos, but my point stands: they only have TWO Origin-level players right now: Woods and Farah. They really couldn’t afford a third?

The word is that Tedesco’s manager got tired of dealing with them, because they weren’t prepared to pay his client what he was clearly worth to another club.

As for what this would have done to future player negotiations: THIS IS GRANT MAYER’S JOB. Every CEO has to deal with this – and it becomes a matter of priorities. I’d say that Mayer has his priorities wrong in this case. He’d better hope that the players he has retained make up for his mistake.

Tedesco loss is the Tigers fault

Louis, Mullen constituent parts (kicking, passing, running) are all good, but I challenge you to watch a game and rate his fifth-tackle options. I’ll guess that maybe 6 out of 10 are quality. That percentage needs to be higher if you want to be considered an elite NRL playmaker.

Impressions from the Anzac Test

Foran is a GUN, who has an impact of almost every game he plays. You can’t say that about Johnson yet, and this article was dealing in the now.

It’s not ‘crazy’ to want Mullen in the Blues team. It simply wouldn’t serve NSW moving forward. Better to give a younger player with fresher legs a chance, such as Johnson- or stick with Maloney and hope for improved performance across the board and a decline from Queensland.

Impressions from the Anzac Test

They did indeed miss him, Haz. Mannering is workhorse but doesn’t have the skill and athleticism of Watmough or Parker. Those guys tend to make more of an impact in attack across the 80 mins, which is what the Kiwis lack.

You’ve made my point for me with the 2011 example and Johnson. Yes, he had a great year but hasn’t consistently reproduced that form and to be an elite player, you’ve got to show up for the vast majority of games. He doesn’t. As for your “game control”, go back and take a look at his last tackle plays in the Test. Not much game control on display.

Impressions from the Anzac Test

Exactly right, Muzz. Steve, we can take any game we wish to the country and by making it an NRL game, we might free ourselves of the need to delay the NRL premiership a week, just when momentum was gathering.

Impressions from the Anzac Test

Thankfully TITY, you’re not running the game. We need an administration who is looking at the bigger picture and isn’t concerned with immediate self-preservation, as fans of their clubs are (understandably). Dave Smith only cares about growing the game. If that means putting some current NRL sydney teams into the NSW Cup, so be it.

Goodbye Wests Tigers, hello West Coast Tigers?

You’re avoiding the central question. No, not in the short term, you’re right- Penrith would get small crowds at ANZ.

THIS TAKES TIME. If we listened to you, David, this league would never grow. We’d have never expanded or merged any clubs, or moved Souths/Canterbury to ANZ where they’ve done very well and grown their crowds. We need to keep moving in this direction. I know you want a cozy little suburban league but luckily our administrators want a bigger national league in front of bigger crowds with fewer Sydney teams and more teams all over the country (and NZ). I’m with them.

Goodbye Wests Tigers, hello West Coast Tigers?

Do your research, Mushi. The Charlotte team hasn’t performed well on the field but it’s been well supported.

There have been numerous other relocations since the teams in the 50s. I was using them as examples. Again, do your research.

Goodbye Wests Tigers, hello West Coast Tigers?

First up- one of the premises of my article (and stated clearly) is that we STAY at 16. So we’re in agreement.

I agree that should be even fewer Sydney teams, but that’s not going to happen and probably shouldn’t happen just yet. 7 is a good starting point.

Goodbye Wests Tigers, hello West Coast Tigers?

Good comeback James.

Goodbye Wests Tigers, hello West Coast Tigers?

Forget Central Queensland. Not gonna happen. We need teams in CITIES, not general areas. There is not nearly enough corporate support to justify a team. It’s essentially a bush area. Let it go. Brisbane needs a second team, one day there may be a Cairns club but not for at least 20 years. New Zealand 2, Adelaide and even a Melbourne 2 will come in before that.

Goodbye Wests Tigers, hello West Coast Tigers?

Sharks would also be good in Perth. I have no problem with that.

Goodbye Wests Tigers, hello West Coast Tigers?