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The Barry

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Joined July 2010

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Regardless of the company he keeps, that’s a career that stacks up against anyone’s

Again, not saying he’s better than JT but for mine he’s still among the elite to have played

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

I think the gap between Thurston and Cronk is much less than the gap between Cronk and DCE / Cleary
That a player with two Dally Ms, a Churchill, a golden boot, five x Dally M halfback, four premierships, 375 games, 101 tries, 38 tests, 22 origins, 2 world cups, and 8 from 9 Origin series wins is referred to as “a replacement player” sort of backs up my point that Cronk is under rated

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

If you say so, but he’s still not more than 60-70% Cronk either

Cleary and DCE are both million dollar men, so back to the original point, it’s pretty tough finding 90% Cronk in the player market

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

I don’t think it’s that easy to find 90% of Cronk

Who’d be closest now? Probably Nathan Cleary and while he’s got some developing to do he’d be what, 60% peak Cronk?

I’m not pushing Cronk over JT… I think JT was better but I think Cronk is more under rated than JT

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

Me too

I remember the Big Mal v Joey immortal debates and they became Mal fans bagging Johns and vice versa instead of each side promoting the skills of their man

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

I didn’t mean to use tries as a point of comparison, more because there’s a perception of Cronk as a methodical, all kicking, all passing, game plan executing robot, where I think he doesn’t get the credit he deserves as an instinctive eyes up footballer

Already the comments here (including mine) paint Cronk that way and JT as an all instinct, ad hoc RNG

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

Cronk scored 101 NRL career tries versus JTs 90, albeit over 40-odd additional games, which means their try scoring rate was pretty similar…which belies the perception of Cronk at times as a robotic game manager

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

I don’t think JT is a shoo-in to be an immortal

It’s a really tough comparison. I think JT individually was a better player – and you’ve left out some of the amazing effort plays he made which were as important a part of his game as his individual brilliance

But if I was a coach, I think I’d pick Cronk first. Having his metronomic execution of a game plan might be more attractive than JTs brilliance

I also think because Cronk was so good with that side of the game that his individual game is under rated. He’s also a great ball player – how many backrowers have looked like world beaters outside Cronk and have looked pedestrian without him?

Sorry universe, but Cooper Cronk is superior to Johnathan Thurston

Yes and no

NSW never really had the cue out of the rack. All the early running was Queensland and the NSW tries came against the run of play. Qld had sustained ball on NSW’s line and couldn’t score. NSW got down their end twice and scored twice

But even though Qld had had the running NSW thought they coast

But I reckon they were flat the whole game. They were pretty poor through the middle and completely dominated by the Qld pack

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

That was the greatest month of footy of my life

The disappointment of being minor premiers in 93 and 94, then going out in straight sets in 93 and getting pumped in the 95 decider

All the SL stuff through the season that ripped the Dogs up, finishing 6th and not really having any expectations for the finals series

Then an absolute cracking game between the Dragons and Bulldogs in week 1. Pay and Tallis going hammer and tongs and Baa getting us home at the end

Week 2 against the Broncos was one of the best games of footy I’ve seen, with both teams throwing the ball around from anywhere from early on. Pay took Lazarus out early with an absolutely brutal and legal head on shot

We gave the high flying Raiders a lesson in Week 3 with Lamb putting on a masterclass of a kicking game and attacking footy

By the time the grand final rolled around the momentum was unstoppable and Manly were deer in the headlights…

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Yawn…

It gets tiring with this nonsense…but here goes… 😛 😛 😛

The Dogs also had a 100% legit try disallowed which rarely gets mentioned. Nor does the fact Manly won the penalty count. Nor does the fact the Bulldogs absolutely dominated possession and territory from minutes 21-80 and completely snuffed Manly out of the game. Manly barely got in the Dogs half in the second half of the game

Manly couldn’t score in an 80 minute game, yet people are going to come out and say they were robbed? The seven tackle set is what it is. It’s clearly wrong, but did Manly let the Dogs score because they knew it was seventh tackle?

There was nothing wrong with the third try. The Dymock pass to Price was forward, ref missed it, but it occurred early in the game and isn’t the reason Manly lost

Even if you take away the two questionable Bulldogs tries and don’t give us our fair one back, the Bulldogs still win the game

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Yeah, you can go around in circles with that forever

The loss of Teddy v Munster. Cordner, Murray, Trbojevic, Morgan, Ponga, Brimson. Queensland were playing their fourth string fullback…possibly 5th if you think Morgan might have got the jersey ahead of Allen

Ultimately, the guys on the field have to get the job done. One side did, one didn’t

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

I agree. I’m not claiming the Dogs roster was better than any of those sides, just that they weren’t one of the inferior rosters in the comp

In three seasons between 93-95, the Dogs won two minor premierships, appeared in two grand finals and won a comp. The impact super league had on them finishing sixth added a bit of a romanticised element, but the Dogs were one of the gun sides of that era

I guess the difference between the Manly, Broncos, Raiders sides and the Dogs was that they former all have players that will go down as all time greats. The Dogs had a lot of players who had shorter, less celebrated careers but were absolutely at their peak at that time

Simon Gillies was unreal in that era – particularly 95 – but faded pretty quickly, same for Matt Ryan, John Timu, Jason Williams and a few others

How easily they disposed of the Broncos, Raiders and Manly in the 95 semis shows their quality

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Anti-Bob Lindner…

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Couldn’t agree more about the neutral game being the critical game – and how disappointing it was how flat NSW were

Same with Bennett’s reaction in the sheds after Game 2. I was marvelling at that at the time. I don’t think I’ve seen anything like it after a 20+ point drubbing

Players were walking into the sheds with their heads down and Bennett was laughing, slapping them on the shoulders, shaking hands

For someone normally so taciturn it was pretty telling and rubbed off in the whole squad immediately. I was worried about Game 3 from that moment

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Showing my age too…

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

We’re splitting pretty fine hairs here…both of them put on their share of origin winning plays…

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Wasn’t it about 15 minutes into Game 1…?

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Yep and NSW looked like they needed it in Game 1. But in Game 2 Brown was on the bench, got not many minutes and didn’t really get spicy, so there was some forewarning there

If Brown was there to add spice, why not get him out there when NSW forwards were getting owned in the middle, instead of late in the second half when trying to chase down a lead?

Plus Brown played a 7 minute stint and a 5 minute stint so Freddy used up three interchanges for Brown’s 12 minutes

There’s a big element of Monday morning quarterbacking here but as I say there was some forewarning and they’re not such obscure possibilities that an origin level coach shouldn’t be able to predict

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Crichton was playing on the left with Wighton, so I can understand leaving them together (not that their combo was particularly working) to minimise the disruption

Not sure the sweep plays would be any more effective with Frizell and Crichton as your edge combo

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Yeah, definitely not a specialist 14 but he was very good at the role at Origin level

Could play half, fullback, centre but also that middle of the field floating role really well

All hail the new kings of Melbourne

I agree, four forwards isn’t necessarily a bad thing – but your game plan has to match the selection. If you’re down to 16 and one of your forwards still only gets 12 minutes, then what’s the point?

Playing with 16 in your rotation and giving your best players big minutes is tactically fine as well

But if you’re not going to play your 4th reserve, then it’s pointless picking another middle third forward (and fourth lock) You may as well have someone who offers something different in case of emergencies ie injury or chasing down a lead…both of which happened in this game

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

The 95 season itself was bumpy with Super League and player defections making a romantic come from 6th place underdog story

But the Dogs had been minor premiers in 93 and 94 in comps that included all time great Broncos and Raiders teams, so they weren’t actually that “inferior” demonstrated by them knocking over the absolute best teams of that era – Dragons, Broncos, Raiders, Sea Eagles week after week

You can certainly make a case that Manly, Raiders, Broncos had superior rosters but it’s not like the Dogs were the Cleveland Indians from Major League…

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Selections didn’t match tactics. If you pick Wighton in the centres, surely the strategy has to be to get him early ball and running at the defence ie play to his strengths. He got the ball with space maybe twice in the series. So you get the defensive liability of having someone play in an unfamiliar position, with none of the attacking upside

Crichton had a huge series but how often did NSW have set plays with him running decoy lines so they could get early ball to Wighton with room? I barely remember it happening

Same with the Game 3 bench selections. Pick four middle forwards if you’re going to have a high rotation, fast paced game through the middle. But what’s the point in picking four forwards if one of them is only going to get 12 minutes. When you consider Yeo was out of the forward rotation for the whole game, four forwards is a head scratcher

Game 1 at a neutral venue was always going to be the critical game. NSW came out complacent and flat when they should have been breathing fire

But the main reason is Queensland simply outplayed NSW. No disrespect but players like Sami, the Lees, Allen, Capewell, Hess, Collins and maybe more wouldn’t get a look in with NSW but they (mostly) played out of their skins and far above their “usual” standard while the NSW players didn’t

Everything about NSW seemed lazy. Preparation, tactics, selections. That’s never going to win an Origin series

How the worst Queensland side ever won the 2020 State of Origin series

Michael Morgan was good at 14 for Queensland and hasn’t had the same impact as a starter…

All hail the new kings of Melbourne