DISCORD 2012: Edition 26
IT'S sad to see Jamie Peacock stand down in the middle of a series - but talk has already turned to who should replace him as England captain.by NRL
IT'S sad to see Jamie Peacock stand down in the middle of a series - but talk has already turned to who should replace him as England captain.
Kevin Sinfield, Gareth Ellis, Sean O'Loughlin and Sam Tomkins have all been mentioned in dispatches - and of those, Gareth Ellis seems the most likely. But Discord thinks there's only one man for the job: Sam Burgess.
Even though he plies his trade in Australia, Burgess is only 23, is a model citizen and proud Englishmen who would relish the ambassadorial aspect of the role. Burgess gets on well with just about everyone and his being in Australia shouldn't be an impediment to his appointment.
There's nothing wrong with any of the other candidates. Some are a little old, some aren't certainties to make the team, others aren't comfortable in the spotlight. Burgess ticks every box aside from living in England.
IT'S obviously a big worry for those who pledged money to Bradford (I was going to, never got around to it) that the club is going into administration.
Because it's safe to assume those people care about the Bulls, they'll no doubt be pleased if new owners take over. But it's entirely possible those new owners were waiting for the club to go into administration so they are not liable for all the debts.
Which begs the question: exactly why did you pledge money, if in the fullness of time the whole process is shown to be something of a charade? Also, I think it's time we heard more about the real reasons behind Red Hall buying Odsal Stadium. Bugger the confidentiality clauses ? people have given up their hard-earned and aren't in possession of all the facts.
THANKS for all the comments last week. Much appreciated. Penri talks about Origin eligibility. I'm not saying let everyone play, I'm saying if you qualify for NSW or Queensland by having played your first senior football after the age of 16 there, then it doesn't matter what country you want to play for at Test level. I'm not saying Sam Burgess should play for NSW.
Stephen makes a great point - people are talking about international football where once they did not care. But the NRL is not going to offer broadcasters fewer club matches - that would be just asking for a crap return. Also, it's interesting and surprising that rank-and-file league fans are blaming NSW and Queensland as the recruitment aggressors when New Zealand have plenty of Australian-born players in their incumbent side.
Bennis basically called for the Queensland side to be disbanded! Origin is a great concept and a great money-spinner for our game. No sport would close down its most lucrative brand to help another brand (international football) which is performing patchily.
Matthew called for the residency rule to be scrapped for Australia, New Zealand and England. I agree - but there's a fair bit of fine print to work out. It should only pick up players who move to Australia or England tpo play. We don't want Petero Civoniceva barred, do we?
Davey G was another who called for an absolute birth rule. See above. James Tamou is City-eligible, by the way. His time in the Easts junior league is how he qualified for NSW.
Penny Panther wanted a NZ v Exiles series introduced. I don't see a hunger for it, Penny. Origin players are paid what they are because of the money the series generates. So players would still prefer to represent NSW or Queensland than the Exiles. Also, the ARLC has already announced that Origin is staying on Wednesday night next year.
John J wanted a "Combined Other NRL" team just like the Exiles. But who is going to support the "Combined Other NRL" team? Where is their home ground? I direct those comments to Dave1 too. The Exiles game two weeks ago was very poor indeed. I think you are right, John J, about English players who don't have to play Origin - more of them will come to the NRL in coming years.
Gareth said don't pay players for Origin at all! I don't think any worker would cop doing the most lucrative part of their job and not being paid for it while the boss makes a motza.
Manoa said many players from the Pacific consider themselves Australian. But what if these players could play Origin, but then make "sacrifices" to represent their home nation in internationals ? the sacrifices being much smaller pay packets?
Brad I like your idea of ascribing points to the number of years you have been in the country. But that does not take into account your parents, grandparents, whether you moved for footy or because your family moved and how you were raised. I would prefer NSW and Queensland pick players who are eligible under the rules, and then those players choose which country they play for.
I agree with Chris Riediger, I would love to have a sheet in the press box when a player makes his debut giving age, weight, junior club, state and country of election - and that's it. No further correspondence entered into.
Frank Carrington and WarriorMan had similar thoughts to some of those above. WarriorMan, if Tonga or Malta held an international during the NRL season and demanded players be released, all it would do would be get the NRL clubs' backs up. You need the co-operation of the club game to make internationals work - they are the players' employers. If a boss doesn't let his man play an amateur game, the player doesn't play.
Matt R, I tried but I couldn't say it better myself. You're right - if you qualify for a State, play for them. And if you qualify for more than one country, you should be free to play for that country if it's not Australia.
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