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Monorchid

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Great article AMD. I’m looking forward to Part 2. Your comment on the crowds at Seagulls Stadium stadium interested me. In those days, few people from Brisbane would have bothered to drive down the highway just to see a game. The Terranora Lakes Country Club, and the Tweed Heads RSL and golf clubs, were far more popular for Brisbanites for the pokies. In a sense, the first Gold Coast club was isolated. They weren’t part of the northern NSW area, and they didn’t impact on the Aussie Rules southern winter sojourners.

The indifferent shore: Rugby league on the Gold Coast (Part 1)

I think that ST has a point. I live about a 1 hour drive to Suncorp from the north side. We’ve had 202mm of rain here over the last 3 days according to my rain gauge. Yes, I know that’s not near Suncorp. The nearest I got today was Newmarket and it was very wet there. Suncorp’s drainage is very good. It has to be.

Most of us know that Lang Park was once a graveyard. But it was always a swamp. A special open drain was originally built along, I think, the western side. A pipe was later plonked into the open drain to direct water to the nearby Brisbane River. That’s why the ground floods so easily. When I was a young boy about 60 years ago, I can still recall that it was almost impossible to recognise players’ jerseys on wet days because of the mud.

Now the drainage is much, much better. But the ground can get chopped up in prolonged wet weather with so much use over a short time. It’s happened before. The football will still be great – it’ll just be different. But injury to players, as others have pointed out, may be an issue. Regardless, hopefully my Broncos will prevail over Manly. No wet blankets please.

Magic Round just became aquatic round: Why you should never play eight NRL games at the same venue

I was in the pub and saw the coat-hanger. I have no stake in this game, but I was surprised that it took so long to send Kennedy off. What will be interesting will be the penalty that the judiciary comes up with. Given the focus on CTE, and what I think was the recklessness of the “tackle”, it should be substantial.

'We’re not dying wondering': Sharks go into attack mode after Kennedy send-off to embarrass Warriors

By sheer coincidence AMD, I had a somewhat similar conversation with my nephew yesterday. He went to the USA to work 12 years ago and he’s out here for a visit. If I understood him right, the biggest hurdle to get Americans interested in RL is money. I don’t know much about the NFL, but I was shocked when my nephew told me how much money NFL players are paid annually. He mentioned one player who gets USD$30 million a year. He also said that the franchises aren’t short of money. All this may make it very hard to convince Americans to swap to RL in significant numbers.

The field of dreams: Rugby league and the United States of America

I see Loane a couple of times a year at his practice in Auchenflower in Brisbane. He’s been my wife’s ophthalmologist for quite some years now. We actually knew his brother Micheal and his family better as our children went to the same primary school. Mark Loane still looks pretty fit to me. He’s certainly not carrying any extra weight. I believe that he does a lot of pro bono eye work for aboriginal people too. He’s also a very nice person. I asked him for his autograph a few years ago, and he seemed to be genuinely amazed that anyone would want his autograph. Thanks for a great article PD about a great bloke.

Mark Loane: A man of two diverse worlds

RobC, I’ve never understood this relatively recent criticism of the maul. All right, I never played in the tight 5. I was a terrible open side breakaway. But I always appreciated the subtleties of a well driven sustained maul and its tactics more as a spectator than a player. And defending against a maul is a skill on its own. The maul is possibly also a hangover from the origins of the game at the Rugby school if you delve into the history where it was like a moving scrum. It’s part of the tradition of the game. And it doesn’t detract from it. Now lineouts are another issue.

When will fans stop trying to drive the maul out of rugby union?

What a cracker of an article AMD. It’s so well researched and argued. I’m ashamed to say that I’d never heard of Jim Craig, and I’m an older bloke. Thanks for a great read.

The talisman: Why Jim Craig should be the 14th Immortal

You’ve got a point Adam. No argument. But I largely agree with Jim. Any binning, red carding, or giving any penalty should be awarded if it’s warranted. If referees aren’t following the rules and interpretations of the game, then there’s an oversight protocol for a referee’s performance which should be dealing with problems you rightly draw attention too. It’s all down to coaches and players in the end. All they’ve got to do is play by the rules, don’t they?

Experts Roar: Should the sin bin be used more, less or the same?

No argument andrew. But the one that shocked me was the incident in the 3rd SOO game in 1991 when Meninga’s high tackle on Michael O’Connor very early in the game left him with a broken nose and two black eyes. O’Connor appeared on TV the next day and looked absolutely terrible. There was no citing.

NRL NEWS: Barnett hit for SIX games for elbow to jaw, Robbo ruled out with COVID

I have a harsh view of the Barnett incident, and many similar incidents going back equally many years. I’m more than aware that my strong view will attract criticism.

For a start, it always amazes me how remorseful offending players can be after the incident, and talk about lessons learnt. And how the two players have been texting each other which infers that the attacked player has forgiven the attacker and that they’re great mates. In my view, one is concentrating on playing football, and the other has cowardly intentions in mind that would result in them being introduced to a policeman if the incident occurred away from the playing field.

Along with other sports, RL has been trying to deal with the concussion issue. The NRL is basically agreeing that incidents like this have a place in the game because the offender just has to miss out on a relatively few games. There’s no serious deterrent to not offend again. There’s no consideration for the attacked player. And no matter what policies the NRL brings to the CTE issue, the weak point in any policy in cases like this is the offending player. The only solution is to permanently remove the player from the game on a no tolerance basis. No hearings, no fancy lawyers’ submissions, no lame excuses, no second chances. Get a red card for an offence like this, and the player is banned for life. There’s a deterrent right there.

Not many players have records of offences like this one, so we’re only looking at a few players. And what would most players think of such a policy? Maybe we should ask players like Manu.

NRL NEWS: Barnett hit for SIX games for elbow to jaw, Robbo ruled out with COVID

G’day Busted. You’re spot on, and so is JW. I spoke with Frank O’Callaghan a long time ago at Ballymore in the 1970s. He told me that he had to fight for every line of copy the editor would give him even back then. I’ve made similar comments like you both on these boards before. Australian and State rugby do nothing noticeable to promote the game. Web sites for clubs are hopeless. There’s still a chook raffle mentality there.

I actually get my press coverage of rugby here at the Roar. And you refer to the Qld Vs NSW games of old. Who can forget the chant of “We want 50” that fateful afternoon as the sun set in the west over the stand at Ballymore. It was standing room only. As you say, the gate for the recent game was pathetic. But the snouts in the trough won’t care. Poor fella my Rugby.

Titanic Tahs and Reds derby begets a sentimental haze

Manu just ran over Mitchell to score Stormy. That alone would have made the commentary by the caller and The Roarers worthwhile.

How Souths can beat Roosters: pack mentality and edging towards the fringes

I was going to make a similar comment Stormy. I’m sure there’ll be a good reason.

How Souths can beat Roosters: pack mentality and edging towards the fringes

Great article in a series of them Geoff. Please keep them coming. Allowing club doctors or “trainers” to have any say about players suspected of concussion was always a joke. But so is an independent doctor diagnosing at a distance in a bunker. This is taking telehealth to ridiculous levels. The only head that most trainers could have an educated opinion about is the one on a beer. They should have no involvement.

I rarely disagree with you Geoff. But the suggestion of “the independent doctor, referees, club doctors and the on-field trainers work in unison” won’t work. The referees, club doctors, and trainers have been contributors to the problem. If there’s going to be an independent doctor, then they should have autocratic decision making powers, or they aren’t independent by definition. The doctor should be engaged on a contracted fee for service, or they’ll only be seen to be administering the NRL’s policy which you’ve quite rightly been criticising. And this doctor needs to be on the sideline so the player can be examined at close quarters. Otherwise the “I’ve only hurt my shoulder – I’ll be OK in a minute” explanation will continue to be exploited by coaches and players.

I do support your view of the HIA process and the Radley incident, and the NRL circus rolling on.

New season, new rules but the NRL concussion circus rolls on

For a fairly brief article that doesn’t really support its main points, it’s drawn 85 comments. And some spirited tos and fros as well. It must be a slow day. And I note that, so far, the author hasn’t responded even once on the thread that he/she instigated. How often have we seen this type of debate. All right, I’ll bite. This is one of those threads where we can write what we like and not get off topic. OK, it’s a slow arvo for me too.

I came from a RU school, and I saw my first game of RL at Ballymore before RU got a hold of the park. The game was a church league fixture between the Banyo Baptists and the Woolloowin Methodists. I could see straight away that it was very different from Union. I didn’t change religions being a good RC who kept playing RU even having encountered RL. I was hooked and started going to Lang Park (showing some age there) to watch games most Sundays after playing Union at Kalinga Park the day before.

I had little money, and I used to sneak through the fencing into Lang Park at the abutting Lang Park Police Boys Club. I finally got to a stage where I could afford to legally enter the ground at the Hale Street gate into the outer after parking in the nearby Cricket Street. Yeah I know. RL and cricket. It’s not a joke. Check your Google Map.

The only salient point in this preciously unprecocious article that I agree with is that RU does struggle for press coverage. And it’s ever been thus. Some of you who are of my vintage (I saw Ken Irvine score a try at Lang Park) who lived in Brisbane will remember The Courier-Mail’s Frank O’Callaghan who was their RU writer. I recall Frank telling me one day that he had to fight for every column inch he could wrest away from the RL writers. And that’s what Rugby Australia needs to do. Fight for press coverage. It’s hopeless at proselytising its cause. And it’s hid behind a pay per view curtain for too long. Even now, not all its Super Rugby matches are free on Channel 92. Oh, and for those comments about RU being a rich man’s sport, you should have been at my house in the 1950s for a Sunday breakfast of fried offal and onions.

'It trumps league': Why don’t the media give rugby union a fair go?

Tony, you’re right. But it doesn’t matter how big a player gets. The weakest parts are still the joints. No amount of weight work strengthens the few muscles and cartridges across places like the knees, ankles, elbows, and arms.

The rugby league casualty ward is filling up at fast

Price for the Cumberland Throw JA? Thought it was Alfie Langer. The first time I saw it, as an ex-Judo player of no fame at all, I recognised it as one of the foot throws we were taught. Ironically in my case, in the Lang Park Police Boys Club abutting Lang Park where Alfie practised his trade.

The rugby league casualty ward is filling up at fast

I agree Cam. As someone who came to RL from several years of RU, I’ve never understood why playing the ball is such a big deal as a restart method. No doubt there was a reason once. But does it matter today? After all, RL has just about nullified scrums. Why not the play the ball too?

Don’t freak out, it’s only one game: NRL Round 1 talking points

Good summary KS. Especially about Isaako, Staggs, and Farnsworth. Oates interests me. I’ve always been a fan of his, but he hasn’t tied down his place for quite a while now under two coaches. I don’t know whether it’s injury, being not well handled, lack of confidence, or a combination of factors. I think he’s got ability. He certainly gave a very positive interview a few days ago saying he’s feeling the best he has for quite a while. He looks very fit too. I wish him well.

The Roar’s NRL expert tips and predictions: Round 1

I agree TB, and I’m a member of the Ponies. I see their best performance as maybe top of the bottom 8. It will be interesting to see how the halves combination goes in the first round without Reynolds.

The Eels and Rabbitohs are in a fight just to make the eight

I fear that Mary and Danielle are right about my Broncos struggling in the halves without Reynolds. I worry that the club has done the same thing it did with Milford. And that’s have one player who’s basically expected to win games pretty much alone. Still, it’s best to find out how they’ll go without Reynolds now rather than well into the season.

The Roar’s NRL expert tips and predictions: Round 1

Given the habits of some players, I thought this practice could have been banned under the provisions of the Occupational Health and Safety Act. Or maybe saliva could be declared an illegal drug.

Crossing the line: Saliva use to be considered ball tampering

I actually think it will be interesting to see how the Ponies go without Reynolds. I’m a Broncos member, but I feel I’m having deja vu all over again. It seemed to me that the club thought that Milford would be the panacea for its problems and would win matches pretty much on his own. And they might be doing the same thing again with Reynolds without much depth for his position. Hopefully I’m wrong.

NRL NEWS: Cronk to the rescue for Storm halves, Reynolds COVID risk, CHT open to offers

Thanks for replying Gibbo. Not all authors here do that. There’s as good a description of the whole sordid affair in some detail on Wikipedia. Just type “John the bookmaker controversy” into your search engine. You probably read it.

I do agree that it all seemed strange to me when it all finally blew up in 1998 – because of the media, not the cricket authorities. People were asking why there was pitch and weather information exchanged for money when this could be obtained for free by reading a newspaper or listening to the radio. People were speculating that more may have been involved. It looked bad irrespective of what really happened.

The Australian Cricket Board came out of it badly too because it seems that certain people hadn’t been fully forthcoming to other Board members. Then there was the allegation about Saleem Malik trying to bribe the same players to toss matches in Pakistan. And subsequent enquiries by both countries. It was all mucky and murky. The problem was that neither player was found guilty of match fixing although they were fined. Anyway, it doesn’t matter anymore for Warne. RIP.

Losing Marsh and Warne gives us new perspective

I replied to your comment yesterday DaveJ. It didn’t make it for some reason. What I said was that I was also taken aback by the statement about “taking money for match fixing”. All I could think of was when Warne and Mark Waugh were reported to have accepted money from “John the bookie” for pitch information during the 1994 tour of Sri Lanka. While I recall being astonished that Test players would do this when the story broke, it doesn’t constitute match fixing, and I don’t remember anyone alleging this at the time either.

Losing Marsh and Warne gives us new perspective

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