ANZAC Rookies Frustrate Fans

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Stephen Kearney has frustrated Rugby League fans with an apparent façade over questionable selections for New Zealand’s ANZAC clash. The most notable being the axing of Jared Waerea-Hargreaves.

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Juniors The Future As Australia Dominates Rankings

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Photo By: Ian Bird http://www.ianbirdphotography.com

No matter where you look – the Ashes whitewash, the domination of South Africa, the resurgence of Mitchell Johnson – the baggy green has lately been the focus of attention throughout the highest echelons of world cricket.

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Crimes Perpetrated By Women On Rise As Mental Issues Main Factor

The rise of crimes perpetrated by women in Australia has become an interesting new talking point in the Australian media industry, and the correlation of facts in regards to motivation for these crimes has produced some interesting theories.

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Eagles Clip Bunnies 14-12

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What: NRL Round 2
Who: Manly Sea Eagles v South Sydney Rabbitohs
Result: Manly 14-12
When and Where: Friday March 14 – Bluetongue Stadium
Crowd: 15,120
Match Rating: 7/10

 

80 Minutes in 80 Seconds: Round two of the NRL season got off to a flier, with the Friday night blockbuster between the Sea Eagles and Rabbitohs certainly delivering. The first ten minutes were extremely intense, with Manly’s barnstorming runs, crunching tackles and expansive attacking play putting the Rabbits on the back foot. However, the game soon turned very sloppy, with both sides turning over possession all too easily – onlookers would have been forgiven for thinking the ball was covered in soap. Despite coach Geoff Toovey branding his team “underdogs” coming into the match, the Sea Eagles came out flying, crossing over in the corner in the seventh minute through extradited Eel Cheyse Blair. After being kept quiet in an arm wrestle between two monstrous forward packs, the Rabbitohs finally crossed the line following a large break from flier Nathan Merritt, which ultimately led to a try for centre Beau Champion. As the momentum of the game shifted from side to side, not only due to the constant change of possession, but the tough battle in the middle, it was down to the great footwork of Jamie Buhrer breaking the Rabbitohs’ wall of defence and offloading to a free-running Cherry Evans to seal the game for the Eagles in the 64th minute. The match was the full package, with tensions boiling between the Burgess brothers and returning Eagles hard-man Jason King, referee controversies, and some of what we all love about the game so much – that hard-fought, blue-collar brawl between two gritty forward packs. Continue reading “Eagles Clip Bunnies 14-12”

Fifita’s $850,000 Deal

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Australian representative and Sharks destroyer Andrew Fifita is set to become the highest-paid prop forward in Rugby League’s 108 year history.

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Auckland Needs Nine Lives

It has been hailed as the competition of a decade, where 16 teams and 256 players go head to head over a two day period, in a series of brutal, yet entertaining matches, vying for the dream prize of 2.25 million dollars.

But it prompts the question, is the competition worth the risk of injury to first team players right before the season opener? With a major injury to exciting Rabbitohs’ playmaker, Luke Keary (torn pectoral), leaving a major hole in the Rabbitohs’ plans, in which he was to form a dynamic partnership with fellow young playmaker Adam Reynolds, their season has been turned on its head. All for the shot at a big pay cheque.

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Burgess Goes Home To Bath

In what is the biggest rugby league story of the off-season, Rabbitohs sensation Sam Burgess has signed with English rugby union club Bath. Burgess, one of the biggest names in rugby league at the moment, has made the big money switch (a transfer fee worth more than $900,000) in which he describes as “an opportunity I had to pursue”. With the 2015 World Cup approaching, Burgess is being foreseen as the answer to Englands’ fragile backline, to which he can add some serious firepower.

Bath and England Coach Stuart Lancaster has made no secret that he would like to use Burgess at inside centre, where like the ever-successful Sonny Bill Williams, his huge frame and quality ball skills have made him a very exciting prospect.

But it prompts the question, will Burgess be able to adapt to the nuances of rugby in time for the cut-throat nature of the global tournament? Queensland Reds coach and former assistant coach at Bath Richard Graham doesn’t think so. “I think the transition will be a tough one for him. I think probably the timing will be against him,” Graham said.

All the signs of a quality athlete with the potential to make the most of the switch are there, but the pressure is on Burgess to succeed in the World Cup when he will have only had one season in the game. By comparison, Sonny Bill Williams had two seasons in France, and one in the Super 15.
Whichever way you look at it, this is a very exciting time for English rugby fans, because as we have seen in the NRL Burgess is a serious talent who could be the X-Factor in Englands World Cup hopes.
The question of Burgess’ adaptability to rugby has led us to look at others who have made the switch, and which of them succeeded, and which failed. The athletes in our ‘Tops’ and ‘Flops’ include:
Tops:

• Wendell Sailor: Sailor was one of the most dominant wingers in the NRL, having a large frame and speed to match. He played rugby league for his state and country before he made the switch to rugby in a big money deal with the Queensland Reds, soon finding himself playing for the Wallabies. Having enjoyed a successful but also controversial time in Australian rugby, he made the switch back to the NRL in 2008, where he finished his career with the Dragons and former mentor coach Wayne Bennet in 2009.

• Lote Tuqiri: Beginning his career in 1999, Tuqiri formed a deadly wing partnership with Wendell Sailor at the Broncos. Tuqiri enjoyed lots of success at the Broncos, winning a premiership, playing for his state, and also representing Australia and Fiji internationally. In 2003 he made the switch to rugby, and his speed combined with strength soon found him a place in Australia’s 2003 World Cup squad. Tuqiri was also selected in the 2007 World Cup squad after being a consistently stand-out performer for the Waratahs. After his contract was terminated in 2009, he has found himself back playing in the NRL, where he has had a tough time with injury but has now signed a one-year deal with the rampaging South Sydney Rabbitohs.
Other successful players include: Mat Rodgers, Brad Thorn and Sonny Bill Williams.

Flops:

• Willie Mason: Mason, possibly the greatest forward in the NRL at his peak, was an amazing talent for the Bulldogs in 2004 where he won a premiership and the prestigious Clive Churchill Medal. Off-field dramas and big money deals saw him move clubs often, from the Roosters to the Cowboys and then overseas to the English Super League. In April 2011 he made his switch to rugby union where he was seen as the next Sonny Bill Williams, but after an unsuccessful stint for French club Toulon, fans described him as the biggest flop in the club’s history. Mason is now back in the NRL playing for the Newcastle Knights.

Sam Alexander

Check out the article published on Sydney Tafe Media – http://www.sit.det.nsw.edu.au/sydneytafemedia/2014/02/18/burgess-goes-home-to-bath