For one glorious moment last week, the biff was brought back as Curtis Scott did the world a favour and beat the everliving fuck out of Dylan Walker. No one knows what Walker did or said that riled Scott so much that he would go out of his way to knowingly cop a fine and a suspension in return for breaking an eye socket, but according to pretty much everyone in the league, Walks absolutely deserved it. You know you’re a good bloke when 300 blokes don’t know what happened, but are just happy that you copped a flogging.
Other news this week sees old man Wayne Bennett planning on joining the Centrelink line when his contract of coaching the Broncos runs out next year, seeing that no one else wants him. Whether or not this has anything to do with Darius Boyd following him around from club to club is anyone’s guess, but it probably isn’t a huge enticement to try and get a 4,000,000 year old fossil to coach your footy team when they have a $700,000 per year tumour attached to them.
I’m not sure who Brisbane have got lined up to take the reins when Wayne fucks off, but judging from the look of most of their players, the Hamburglar is probably a front-runner.
But all of these issues are really just there to give everyone a buffer from the real issues in the game – things like why Cooper Cronk can’t tackle, exactly how much of Aaron Woods’ DNA is made up of marshmallow, and who is NSW going to select to inexplicably lose Origin again this year? Because let’s be honest, Queensland’s invincible players are looking pretty vincible this year based on their club form. Last week’s unofficial “battle of the hookers” between Andrew McCullough and Jake Friend was actually won by Kurt Baptiste. There’s no goalkicker. The halfline is untested. The utilities are out of form. The forwards are mongers.
It’s actually shaping up to be a pretty even and interesting Origin period. Thank you, Cameron Smith.
Brisbane Broncos vs Parramatta Eels
Poor old Parramatta. They have made the decision to swap Corey Norman and Clint Gutherson into each other’s positions in the hope that they’ll get hit by some kind of Beatles-inspired revelation. Unfortunately in a team looking for a Lennon-McCartney combination, they are more likely to find thirteen Ringo Starrs dribbling all over the field.
Canberra Raiders vs Manly Sea Eagles
Last week saw “another game, another close loss” from the Raiders and “another game, another performance that has no basis in logic” from Manly. Come on Raiders, you useless fucks.
North QLD Cowboys vs Melbourne Storm
North Queensland couldn’t buy their mums a win at the moment and managed to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory last round. The Storm are definitely looking rattled this year, although they will welcome back Cameron Smith from a well-earned suspension. It would not surprise me to see the Cows get the upset here. I’m not tipping it though; I’m not that stupid.
Sydney Roosters vs Gold Coast Titans
The Roosters continue to unimpress this year, doing just enough to still be “a good team” but are well short of being “the best team” in the comp. But they really don’t need to be for this game; it’s just the Titans.
NZ Warriors vs South Sydney Rabbitohs
This is a rematch from Round 1 where both teams played like pure gash – things are a smidge different now, and are both sitting pretty in the top 4. How that happened I will never fucking know. Rabbits to win, but this could be a cracker of a game.
Penrith Panthers vs St George Dragons
St George are doing what they do best – start the season well, look comfortable as fuck out on top, inexplicably start to lose form, collapse in a heap. The Panthers are somehow coming second on the ladder, but this game does not really bill itself as a battle of the two best team s in the comp.
Newcastle Knights vs Cronulla Sharks
Cronulla are playing out-and-out balls at the moment. I have no idea how they keep managing to win; they really are not that good. Most people have also written the Knights off until Pearce is back from injury, which means that the only reason to watch this one is to have a gander at the latest NRL wunderkind Kalyn Ponga strut his stuff.
Wests Tigers vs Canterbury Bulldogs
NO ONE CARES.
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