Thursday, March 28, 2013

NRL Round 4: Amusing headline about Slater kicking someone in the face

Last weekend saw a few upsets, some near-comebacks, a shoulder charge, a couple of injuries, the odd continuing drug investigation, and a ninja.  Just the usual in a round of NRL really.

The big divide in the NRL community (other than those with teeth and those without), was Billy “Ralph Macchio” Slater, who was finally penalised for his ridiculous aerial antics, where he will leap for a high kick with at least one leg (usually no more than two) at right angles to his body, with his studded boots at face-height to anyone around him.  In last week’s game, he took the head off some bloke whose name I can’t remember and couldn’t be fucked Googling.  Captain Cameron “Smithy” Smith immediately ran to the umpire complaining that the other bloke was going to tackle Slater in the air, so he pretty much deserved to have a size 7 shoe (Billy’s only a little man) wedged into his eye socket.  The thing that Smith didn’t contemplate was that everyone else on the field has the right to contest the ball while it is in the air, a tactic that is made difficult when you’re being kicked in the face. 

Billy went to the tribunal and used his watertight defence of “I’m Billy Slater” and was immediately let off without a charge, but was given some restaurant vouchers and an iTunes card to make up for the inconvenience of having to waste his Tuesday night.  

Round Four:

Sea Eagles vs Tigers
Bulldogs vs Rabbitohs
Broncos vs Storm
Sharks vs Dragons
Panthers vs Titans
Warriors vs Cowboys
Roosters vs Eels

Despite an unexpected loss last week, Manly should have enough to knock over the Tigers, who had a surprising win.  That’s probably the only “ffffffff” game in this round, really.  Even the Cowboys, who were shithouse on Monday night, shouldn't have any trouble this round - they’re only playing the Warriors, so should bounce back.  I’m fairly sure the Warriors are really only in the comp this year so they can give some confidence back to teams who lost the week before.

Game of the Round:

Knights vs Raiders

The Raiders destroyed the St Georges last week, continuing their unbeaten (by St George) run (at Canberra Stadium) to approximately a million games.  Reese “Reese Lighting” Robinson must get massive Raider-style boners about playing against the Saints, as he has scored about seventy tries against them in the last two years. 

However… this week the Raiders are up against a team without a hoodoo, a team coming off a thrashing of the Cowboys, a team with one of the most formidable coaches and tacticians in the game, a team with a nice logo and a decent colour scheme, a team with the appeal from the year 2003 (and most of the players) – the Newcastle Knights.  I hate to do it, but I’m going against the Raiders for this one.  As much as I love them (in that way), they appear vulnerable way too often and in way too many different areas; they leak yards in the middle and tries on the flanks.  They are quite good looking though, so that counts for something.

I hope they prove me wrong, but alas – this week my money is on the Knights.

Holy shit, I put in two pictures this week.  Both are of some bloke's face recklessly attacking Slater's shoe
Current tally of Raiders Lime cartons personally consumed: 2

Thursday, March 21, 2013

NRL Round 3: Not much happened this week

WOW WHAT A WEEK OF OFF FIELD RUGBY LEAGUE ACTION AND DRAMA is something that people would be saying if something had happened.  It’s probably a good thing that nothing happened during the week things got covered up well this time, as there’s only so many times you can read about overpaid, underperforming athletes not being “role models” for the next generation of superstars, or online forums with ‘sandra from brisvegas lol’ chiming in with her two-dole-cheques worth of “its ppl like this that make me relize that foot players our all idiot's i mean how smart do you have tobe too play football they need too grow up and get real jobs this is why i dont watch football anymore beaucause off ppl like this they are discraceful end i dont won't my kid's too grow up thinking that is exceptable behaviour.”

Writing that hurt my brain.  Fuck off, Sandra.

One word to describe tipping this week:  UUUUUUH.  Honestly, games in Round Three could go either way really easily; I can smell some upsets brewing, in particular the Storm vs Doggies match-up (I have a feeling that the Dogs will get up surprisingly easily [I’m not tipping them though]), and the Titans vs Manly game sends shivers down my spine to think that one of these teams has to actually win, and that makes me sad.  Also look out for the Knights to upset the Cowboys.  I don’t know if they’ll win the match, but they’ll probably upset them in some way – like making fun of them because they speak funny because they’re from Queensland, or they can’t read because they’re from Queensland, or they sniff a lot because they’re bogans because they’re from Queensland.  As soon as someone explains the Knights’ insults to the Cowbs, they will be VERY upset.

And drunk, because they’re from Queensland.  Also: rugby league players.

Round Three looks like this:

Storm vs Bulldogs
Tigers vs Eels
Titans vs Sea Eagles
Roosters vs Broncos
Sharks vs Warriors
Panthers vs Rabbitohs
Knights vs Cowboys

Game of the Round

Raiders vs Dragons

The Raiders were quite obviously robbed in last week’s game, and were desperately unlucky not to have come away with a win, finding themselves about seven tries short of toppling the Titans.  The best defensive effort was saved for their off-field exploits, however, as they miraculously stopped me from picking up my first full round of tips for the year.  Thanks, Fuckwits.  Raiders.  Fuckwits.

This week though, it’s back on like the proverbial game of Donkey Kong.  St George haven’t won at Canberra Stadium since 1941 or something, and after an ordinary week of off-field on-roof dramas, the Raiders will be looking to bounce back with a mahoosive victory over the Dragons.  The Green Machine have reportedly been working on the things that let them down last week, such as passing, catching, tackling, kicking, walking, standing and breathing.  Sandor Earl was so committed to training this week that he didn’t get any new tattoos, and I heard reports that he might have even got a haircut. 

If the Raiders don’t have enough to play for in the form of loyal fans and pride in their team (plus allegations of assault, both physical and sexual), then they have this:

Raiders Lime: relaunching in Canberra on 26 March.  Why use a big home-ground game to promote it when a random Tuesday will do just as well?

PS.  30,000 hits to  That sounds pretty good, until you realise that it has been active since about 2003.  Then it's just a bit sad.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

NRL 2013 Round 2: Personal Issues

What’s the deal with these Thursday night games of football?  Are they here to stay?  I could look up the answer quite easily... but I won’t.  I’m just that kind of person; the one who posts a Facebook status of “what’s the capital of Denmark?” and waits for someone to respond, rather than type “what’s the capital of Denmark?” into Google.  Then I’ll complain about how long it took people to get back to me and how many different answers I got. 

It's Copenhagen, by the way. 

In more important other issues, Josh Dugan got injured (no surprises there; I believe he is being flown to India to partake in the third cricket test as we speak), got pissed (on Cruisers), got rowdy, got on Twitter and got fired.  It was a big weekend for the kid, probably even bigger than mine, and I did two loads of washing.  Duges knew he’d done the wrong thing (again) by posting pictures of himself drinking (Cruisers) at 8am on his roof when he should have been doing some injury rehabilitation, or you know, not sucking at football.  This isn’t the first, second or third time that he’s been in the shit for drinking (Cruisers), but it was the first time he’d told coach Dave Furner to “go fuck yourself.”  It’s not the first time Dave’s heard that though, as he has coached in Canberra for a while, and it’s pretty much how he's greeted whenever he pops down to the shops for a carton of milk.

After sobering up, I’d like to think that Duges had a momentary “oh fuck what have I done oh fuck why did I do that” moment, and jumped on Twitter to use a tried-and-true excuse to get out of being a dick, or what I like to call the Matthew Newton defence, otherwise known as the I’m a massive fuckwit reason:  “I have some personal issues that I’m dealing with.  I appreciate your help through this troubling time.”  I’m afraid Ben Barba stole your thunder there, Dugels, after admitting to getting pissed, gambling away shit tins of money, being involved in bikie gangs, and ordering a Fillet O Fish from McDonalds.  That guy is off the rails, man.

However, Barbsy got away with it by admitting that he was a dick and was going through some personal issues and needed to be hidden away for a bit.  Dugan was about two weeks too late.  Barba, incidentally, has recently been cleared to begin training with the Bulldogs again.  That was a swift recovery, Benjamin, and I’m sure it had nothing to do with the fact that the Dogs looked shithouse last week.  It definitely has nothing to do with the NRL's current hard stance on drug use.  Definitely not.  It’s not like he has just passed a drug test.  No way.  Personal issues.  Expect a few Manly players to be "personally issued" in the next few weeks.

Round 2:

Eels v Bulldogs
Dragons v Broncos
Cowboys v Storm
Warriors v Roosters
Tigers v Panthers
Sea Eagles v Knights
Rabbitohs v Sharks

Game of the Round:

Titans v Raiders

Canberra will step up this week from their dismal effort against the Panfers in the first round.  For one, Josh Dugan won’t be there, and I kind of get the feeling that he disrupts the game plan a bit.  They’ll probably miss Blake Ferguson more, but he was drinking (Cruisers) with Duges and has been suspended indefinitely.  He should return next week and be given one more chance.  In NRL terms, that’s as good as a pay rise.  Which he’ll also get. 

Thanks for the memories, Duges.  See you at the Titans in a few weeks, and congratulations on your Dally M in 2015.

When you chuck a sickie, a good rule to follow is not to send a photo like this to your boss.

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

"My Trip to India" by Cricket Australia

Most people would have seen breaking news today that the Australian cricket team is really fucking weird, and four of their players have been axed from the next game because they didn’t hand in a written assignment explaining why Australia were so shit in their previous match.  In other news, Ed Cowan fell off the monkey bars and Xavier Doherty forgot his lunch money. 

(Australian coach) Mickey Arthur said the players were given five days to submit a personal critique of improvements to be made to the side with a deadline of Saturday.
Many players delivered presentations in Arthur's room, while others provided feedback in email form.It is understood Watson and Pattinson planned to see Arthur yesterday. The coach said Khawaja and Johnson simply forgot to provide feedback.

"I asked the players at the end of the game to give me an individual presentation," Arthur said.

"I wanted three points from each of them technically, mentally and team as to how we were going to get back over the next couple of games, how we were going to get ourselves back into the series.”

Two of the four people who were cut from selection in the next match were spell-check nightmare and part-time batsman Usman Khawaja, and bowling all-rounder Mitchell Johnson.  Ussy and Mitch didn’t actually play in the last game, which Australia lost by an innings and a thousand runs, yet were still required to provide reasons for the loss, and some ideas on how to win the next one.  This is on par with a teacher taking a class of students to the museum for an excursion and asking the kids who were sick that day to write an essay of the best part.  Despite the fact that they took no part in the game, surely writing “Drop Phil Hughes” and sliding it under the coach’s door wouldn’t have taken too long. 

Interesting fact: Phil Hughes has faced 39 balls of spin bowling so far on tour.  He has scored no runs and has been dismissed four times.  The South Africans exploited his inability to play pace bowling, and the Indians have done the same with spin.  Without going into too much detail, this means that Phil Hughes has an inability to play bowling.  As a batsman, that is not good.   

My favourite part of the story is the bit that mentions “Many players delivered presentations in Arthur's room” which makes me think that David Warner performing an enthusiastic recreation of his school’s Rock Eisteddfod act from 2003, where he mimed the R. Kelly hit, Ignition.  Pace bowler James Pattinson has acknowledged his axing, declaring that he deserves the punishment, yet kind of regrets not handing in his critique of “bowl more like me and less like Siddle” that was written on a beer-soaked napkin from their hotel bar, but thought it too “unprofessional” considering he had misspelt both “bowl” and “Siddle.”

The other major incident to come out of this story is that vice captain Shane Watson took a bit of offence to his axing and hopped the first flight back to Australia, declaring that his future in international cricket was “questionable,” reinforcing a statement that Australian cricket fans have had for years. 

Watson has been Australia’s most reliable all-rounder of recent times, but has not been able to bowl following ongoing complications with stress fractures in his back and a note from his mum saying that he didn’t have to do anything he didn’t feel like doing.  This has allowed him to concentrate on his batting, which has led to him experimenting with an unorthodox approach to batting that includes not making any runs, whilst trying to run out his batting partners.  As an all-rounder who no longer bowls or bats and is a liability in the field, it could be said that Watto’s greatest contribution to the Australian team was not handing in his critique. 

Class dismissed. 

Friday, March 08, 2013

NRL 2013: Round 1 - tips, predictions and drugs and shit

Well fuck me in the ear (don’t) if the Rugby League season is upon us.  Sort of snuck up, didn’t it?  Oh well, it beats having to pay attention to the cricket season.  Honestly, how bad is that going?  Badly bad, that’s how bad.  If Phil Hughes somehow makes his way into the team for the third test, I think it would be fairly safe to say that he’s sleeping with someone important.  And I’m not pointing fingers, but it is probably Michael Clarke. 

But enough about the game they play in summer, this week is the official start of the NRL season.  And it’s off to its usual awesome start – the top player in the game has decided not to play until he gets his drinking and gambling situation sorted out, the NRL announces that Tom Waterhouse betting is a major sponsor, the entirety of the Cronulla Sharks are pinged for being massive drug cheats (Todd Carney involved in drugs AND cheating?  No way!) and for some reason, they started the season yesterday.  I think I did realise that, but didn’t get a blog out for it.  Spoiler:  The Rabbitohs beat the Roosters.  I think we all knew that was going to happen anway.

My predictions for the 2013 season:

  • The Rabbitohs will play the Stormohs in the Grand Finaloh. 
  • Jessica Mauboy will be romantically linked to a player.  That player is probably married.  That player is probably Jonathan Thurston, once again besmirching the title of “Face of NRL.”
  • The Sharks are fairly fucked.  Look for me getting a game with them at some stage this year.  I think I’d like to play centre.
  • The Raiders will do their usual thing of sneaking into the top eight and finishing about fifth.  Fans will call for David Furner to be sacked as coach after an embarrassing scoreline at their home ground. 
  • David Furner will not be sacked.
  • The Eels won’t do much.
  • Neither will the Warriors.
  • Or the Broncos.
  • The Doggies will be alright, but the term “underachievers” will be thrown around like a bottle of peptides at a Cronulla training session.
  • Newcastle will be disappointing, but everyone kind of expects that from them. 
  • Everyone will forget that the Dragons are part of the competition.  Even the Dragons.  They may even forfeit at one stage of the season due to lack of caring.
  • Benji Marshall will break a limb.  I’m predicting an arm, or at least a wrist that he will pretend to be upset about, but not really because he’s going to have a rubbish season anyway.
  • Manly will complain an awful lot.  I think they’ll cop a flogging at Brookvale from a really ordinary team and someone will punch Glenn Stewart in the back of the head.  I’m not saying it will be me, but that person may look a lot like me.
  • Brett Stewart will still deman an apology for being called a pedophile a few years back.  Then he'll be found to be doping.  Then he'll demand an apology for being called a drug cheat.  Then he'll leave the NRL and go to the UK and demand an apology because his flight was delayed.   
If any of these come true – except the part about me playing for Cronulla – I’ll be fairly excited and will probably become a media sensation about being massively psychic.  Like, on My Kitchen Rules, I can always pick the score that Manu and Pete are going to give. 

Round 1 tips:

Roosters vs Rabbitohs
Broncos vs Sea Eagles
Eels vs Warriors
Bulldogs vs Cowboys
Panthers vs Raiders
Storm vs Dragons
Sharks vs Titans
Knights vs Tigers

Bang on.  Woo.

Out of the three people in this photo, not one of them is actually going to receive a high-five.