Category: sport

The Madness of Far From Royal Ascot – And the Crumbling Kingdom Far Away at the Ridge – How to Burn Money, BRC Style

brctang

Now that’s good business sense for you.

In 2017 the Brisbane Racing Club (BRC) picked up the Souths Sports Club at Acacia Ridge for nothing, not a brass razoo.

Which was about the right price, for you couldn’t really give the joint away.

Sure, it came with 75 gaming entitlements (poker machine licenses) worth $327 000, but the club owed suppliers and other people almost $380 000, and it owed its staff $40 000, meaning that when the BRC walked in the door as the new publican it was almost $100 grand in the hole before it even poured the first beer.

On top of that, the joint was falling down, and required a stack of basic repairs just to get it up to minimum health, hygiene and safety standards, and then a renovation to spruce it up on top, and that sort of facelift required the spending of some serious dough.

In its first year the BRC, being both good citizens and landlords keen to pull in punters, threw in the dough to do the joint up, and it meant that by the end of its first 10 months in charge of a Rugby League club on  the deep southside, the thoroughbred racing club from the inner city north of Brisbane was $166 257 in the red.

Things looked pretty crook in Tullarook, the paddock 30 miles on the other side of the river from Eagle Farm and Doomben, but the good news was that with the doors reopened after the tidy up turnover was bound to rise (it would have to – Souths had been closed for half of the previous year), and with it would come rivers of gold, and the was up baby.

Sure as eggs, thanks to the marketing and managerial skills of the club boss Scott Steele – who shortly after got poached by Albion Park, to try to arrest that club’s long slide toward the abyss, and to save the sport of harness racing at the same time – turnover at Souths rose 40% in its first full year of operation, jumping from $2.5 million to $3.4 million in the 18/19 financial year.

There was a slight problem there too though, because the profit for year was miserable, less than $25 000 all up, or $500 a week, which isn’t much of a return on a turnover of three and a half million. Less than 1% in fact.

Now I’m no expert on running licensed clubs, so I don’t whether a 0.8% net revenue against turnover is good, bad or indifferent. What I do know though is that if you owe almost $170 000 to your bookie, and you are only paying him back $500 a week, it’s going to take you almost seven years to pay the whole tick clean, and that’s assuming you don’t have any losing weeks on the punt along the way.

Seven years is a long time just to get square isn’t it? A hell of a long time.

But then COVID-19 came along, and all of a sudden the seven-year get square point looks the twinkling of an eye.

The BRC won’t be getting square on the Souths pick up in 7 years now, that’s for sure. After having lost over a quarter of the year’s pokie revenue courtesy of the Coronavirus shutdown, some say the jury is out if it ever will.

You see as Peter V’Landy found when he walked into the NRL Chairman’s office on his first day, companies that operate off the back of a steady stream of cash flow can’t cope with the rivers of gold drying up, not for than a month or so anyway, because without it they have no way to pay their bills, and are left to borrowing, begging or stealing just to get a bit of bread and Vegemite to put on the dinner table for tea.

V’Landys being a very sharp operator indeed, and having a unique and highly in-demand product to sell, was able to wangle a $250 million line of credit at favourable interest rates from the premium lenders.

But footy clubs with poker machines are dime a dozen, and ones situated just down the road from a popular pub with newer and brighter one-arm bandits to attract the suckers aren’t particularly beloved by bankers in tough economic times, and none want to risk lending them money.

So right now Souths at Acacia Ridge is bleeding the folding stuff, and the only people it can get money to keep the ship afloat from is its owners the BRC. Which isn’t good news for those members of that club who have signed up not because they want to run footy clubs on the other side of town, but rather because they like racing.

Why isn’t it good news?

Well because the result of the virus is going to be that Souths lose a minimum of 50 grand this financial year, and more likely a hundred, and when you add that to the $145 000 that the BRC are still behind on the transaction, you come up with a figure of somewhere in the red range of about $200 – 250 grand, and that’s being conservative on then calculator.

The upshot of that is that on profits of $500 a week, the deficit is not going to be cleared until the year 2030 at the very earliest, and a fire sale’s not an option because the shops are empty and no-one wants to buy. And if they did, they wouldn’t be paying any more than about half of what a license was worth 2 years ago, because a bunch of pubs and small clubs have gone broke and once the auditors have finished wading through the mess in the books, the market will soon be flooded with gaming entitlements for sale.

I’m not a member of the Brisbane Racing Club – I’m a bit selective about the company I keep – but if I were I would be asking myself and others “What the hell have we got ourselves into here?” and “Why the hell did we buy a footy club at Acacia Ridge when we’re a racing club at Ascot?”

Sadly I won’t be able to give them any answers either.

Some things in life will always remain a mystery.

 

If You Pay 3 Grand For a 3 Piece Lounge Suite at Harvey Norman, Gerry Can’t Just Give You the Armchair, Can He? – So Why Can Corporate Bookies Do It?

tops

A retired rails ring bookie of famous repute contacted us this afternoon about the $1.4 million seven-leg multi footy bet story, and he raised a very interesting point.

Now before I start, let me say that the $1.4 million potential payout for the punters $3000 outlay was fair dinkum. That was the bet that was taken.

But what the retired bookie pointed out – and he is correct – is that the terms and conditions of the TopSport bookmaking company, like that of its competitors, prescribes a maximum payout on any bet.

In the case of TopSport that maximum is $100 000 for bets – including multis – that are placed on the internet, and $200 000 for wagers placed over the phone, unless there is pre-approved agreement between the client and the company to pay out a higher figure.

Now I know for a fact that TopSport have and do agree to payments higher than the prescribed maximum, and that they would have paid this bet, so what follows is not a shot at Topsport, who are a reputable and reliable firm, but rather an illustration of a general flaw in the betting laws.

So the $1.4 million dollar man who ended up with nothing but an Easton Wood inspired chill may well have done a deal that allowed him to get paid out 7 figures if his eagle has landed, but let’s assume for the sake of the argument that he hadn’t.

Imagine if the North Melbourne coach hadn’t played a crippled Ben Cunnington, and the Kangaroos with a fully fit 18 had been able to hang on to get beaten by less than 40 to land the punter his huge speculator, and then Topsport had cut him back to the maximum payout detailed in the terms and conditions.

The punter would have been paid out only (only?) $100 000 if he’d placed the bet on the net, and $200k if he’d done it over the phone.

Here is the question.

The punter had $3000 on at odds of 456.66 to 1.

But the stake to win $100 000 is only $214.30, and to win $200 000 it is $418.60.

How then – in the hypothetical circumstances – would be it be conscionable for the bookie to accept a $3000 wager that it never had any intention of paying if it landed?

If you pay $3000 for a 3-piece lounge suite at Harvey Norman, Gerry’s sales people can’t just give you the armchair can they?

So why can a bookie do it, if they choose to?

Just a bit of food for thought, that’s all.

 

Tears of Clowns – The Broncos Problem – And the Very Simple Solution

Bennett and Broncos defer talks, set to resume ignoring Kevin Walters

That Alex Glenn, the captain and supposed leader of the Broncos, cried after the wretched rabble’s disgraceful defeat by the Warriors last night tells you everything that you need to know about the Brisbane team right now.

It’s okay for men to cry. I’ve been doing it all night over Dad, and he deserved those tears because he was a man who put in every day, and gave life his all.

My father had more than thirty tumours in his body. In his spine, his bones, his blood, his spleen and a whole lot of other places too. The pain he must have gone through is terrible to even think about, but he accepted it as his lot and he bore it, and he didn’t cry, not in front of any of us anyway.

Real men don’t cry out of pain or self pity, they cry for the loss of their wives, or their friends, or for others, not themselves.

In Australia we call it manning up, and even though it sounds sexist its not, for it applies equally to all, whether you’re a woman or a bloke or cross-gender or anything or anyone at all.

You cry for others, not yourself, and you do it over life or death, not just because you just lost a footy game.

One you lost yourself, because you didn’t try, or couldn’t.

These are the tears of clowns, and they’re infectious.

That’s why Alex Glenn had to stand down or be sacked as captain, for he’s not fit to lead his men out of the trenches in which they are drowning right now.

When the Chicago Bulls lost the Eastern Conference final series against the Pistons for the third time in a row in season 89/90, Jordan didn’t cry, or feel sorry for himself.

He felt angry.

Angry at himself. Angry at his team mates. Angry that they had let their coach and their families and their kids down.

There was no time for tears, the Bulls had work to do.

Jordan cancelled the post-season break, and went straight back to the gym. He demanded his whole team do it too, and they did, and all through the off-season they worked, and worked and worked and worked, and kept working until the whole team thought they couldn’t work any more.

Then Jordan stepped up and worked even harder.

The Bulls won the finals that following season, and they won two more after that, and then three more again after Michael Jordan returned from his hiatus in the diamond, and the reason that they won them all was because they had a leader who led from the front, and showed them the way.

All the Broncos have is a broken down old once great player who, like hos team mate Darius Boyd, is just nursing his body through one last season so that he can collect the rich reward he deserves from a back-ended contract proposed by morons, when it should have been loaded up the other way around.

That’s what you get when your club is run by a footy ignoramus like Karl Morris, who would prefer to spend his time discussing Catholic Church politics and the Melbourne Response with George Pell than he would watching a rip-roaring game of league.

Morris has to go, and so does Glenn. No club as psychologically shattered as the Broncos are can rise from the grave while these two blokes remain at the top of the pyramid.

Anthony Seibold has to go too. He clearly has no control or influence over his players, and fails to inspire or lead them.

A coach has to.

If Seibold’s any sort of man he will pack his bag, shake all the players hands, and walk away, and he will do it tomorrow too.

Seibold has no future as a coach in the NRL right now. No-one will touch him. He’s nowhere near the bad coach that blokes like Tallis are painting him, but Seibold is damaged goods, and what he needs to do is go and coach a struggling Super League team in the UK and spark them back to life, and by doing so he can reignite his own career too.

There are only really two men who can save the Broncos right now.

Tallis as Assistant Coach for motivation, and Kevvie Walters to show them how to become winners.

Kevvie won’t come while Morris and Paul White are running the club – and who could blame him – so the Broncos will need to find him a top-shelf management team to support him, and they should allow Walters to hand pick his own.

It’s the only way to stop this rot.

Kevvie.

Let him start on Monday.

You will never see tears after a loss again.

 

 

 

 

J.R. is the Man

Earl Joseph ‘J.R.’ Smith was a gun basketball player.

He only took up playing the game when he was 15, and was so naturally brilliant that he became a first round draft pick into NBA straight out of high school.

In 2009 he ran second in the 6th Man of the Year Award, finished third in the All-Star Slam Dunk competition, and nailed 11 threes and 45 points in the Denver Nuggets last game of the regular season, and won them both the Northwest Conference and a home court advantage in the first round of the playoff series.

A few seasons later he came off the bench three games in a row and hit 30 plus points – the first player in 23 years to do it – and later that season went one better than before and won the 6th Man Award, putting him in pretty rare air considering that the previous winners included James Harden, Lamar Crawford, Jason Terry, Manu Ginobili, Lamar Odok, John Starks, Bobby Jackson, Anthony Mason, Toni Kukoc, Detlef Schrempf. Bill Walton and Kevin McHale.

In 2016 he hit 65 threes in the post-season playoffs and won the ring, when the Cavs carved up Golden State, in the year that King Lebron took Steph Curry to town, amd stamped his name in history by becoming the only man ever to lead the playoff series in every stat that matters – points, rebounds, steals, assists and blocks.

J.R. retired last year, and was having a good time all round until someone decided to smash his car windows in the US riots yesterday.

Silly, silly billy.

I bet he’s feeling it today.

I don’t condone violence as a general rule, but sometimes it’s necessary.

Cometh the hour, cometh the man.

I wouldn’t mind J.R. next to me in the trench, would you?

 

You Must Remember This, a Kiss is Still a Kiss – Even if It Is a Liverpool Smooch – Remembering Ben Currie, Big Russ, George Freeman, Mirrors, a Couple of Teenage Girls Who Loved Horses, and London Daze – Before the QRIC Go and Bash the Sears Clan and Others With the Same Boom Boom Big Stick

sins

The big news in Queensland racing right now should be the Straddie and the J.J. Atkins, two of the Group 1 diamonds in our State’s racing crown.

Sadly though it is not.

The big news is a delegation of trainers who have cried wolf about the so-called unfair practices of their business rivals running off to meet the clowns that run the racing circus so they can be assured that the unnamed but widely known targets of their vitriol are going to cop it with both barrels.

Robert Heathcote, Desleigh Forster, Brian and Daniel Guy, Kelly Schweida, and another are the ones who blew the whistle to Racenet on the unnamed trainers about to become QRIC’s targets.

It is a bit rich given that Heathcote once grew dope illegally in his back yard at Wavell Heights, and that his racing success was founded on funds derived from the profits of sale of stolen priceless artefacts from Papua New Guinea sold by his London brothel owning brother.

And that Forster is said to be a very slow payer of her unlicensed junior stablehands weekly wage; or that the Guys father and Grandfather Ray was well known as being tied up with George Freeman and the Sydney race fixers; or that ‘Smelly’ Kelly Schweida trains a horse named Shogun Sun, which was paid for at least in part by money stolen from Racing Queensland and/or the Ipswich City Council by his self-professed best mate, the convicted and jailed conman and thief Wayne Francis Innes, who to this day continues to hold a share in the galloper under his wife’s name as his bowler.

Anyway, in advance of the awesome fivesome and two hats Cam Partington – the jockey manager who as head of the local branch of the ATA represents their employers the trainers – sit down to spill their guts about why they reckon that rivals  like T and M Sears, Lindsay Hatch, Darryl Hansen, Natalie McCall, the bull rider, and T and T Edmonds are kicking goals, we thought it might be apt to take a look at the last time such a gang press occurred, and what it achieved.

The excerpts below are taken from the QRIC Commissioner’s spruik in his organisation’s most recent Annual report.

The comments are mine, Archie Butterfly’s.

QBEN1

So the QRIC receive information and intelligence about the activities of Ben Currie’s stables in July 2016.

Feeding horses, working them, and taking them to the races are pretty ho-hum activities, so presumably the QRIC is referring to alleged untoward activities.

You know, thinks like jiggers, milkshakes and dope.

The QRIC gets the tip in mid-2016, but does nothing about it until Weetwood Day 2018. almost two years later.

Cracker.

QBEN12

This is not true.

The QRIC put out a press release on the afternoon of the day before the Weetwood, saying that its officers would be out in force on the day of the race, doing this, that and the other.

Here’s a direct quote from the media release (ignore the poor grammar).

The Queensland Racing Integrity Commission (QRIC) has ensured the public and the racing industry that it will be out in force to support the integrity of the Toowoomba Weetwood Handicap tomorrow, 7 April.

Seen as the introduction to Queensland’s Winter Racing Carnival, QRIC’s Integrity Investigations Team (IIT) has carried out a series of pre-race testing and will deliver pre-race swabs on race day, all winners will be tested and if required targeted testing will also occur.

QBEN123

What actually happened is that the QRIC threatened a whole bunch of poorly educated, minimum wage casual or contract workers at Currie Racing with the prospect of long spells in jail if they didn’t cough on Ben Currie, which confused quite a few of them because they simply shovelling shit at 4 in the morning to earn enough to put food on their family’s tables. and they didn’t have a cold.

The three people charged with race day administration were Ben Currie, his dad Boof (Mark Currie), and a stablehand named Greg Britnell.

BEN

BenWe all know about Ben Currie, and what happened to him.

What most people don’t know is that he’s two to one on to get off on appeal, which will create a real difficult problem for the QRIC, but its theirs not ours, and we will discuss it another day.

BOOF

Boof Currie copped 2 years in the bin, but he’s Ben’s Dad, and would you allow your old man to suffer for your presumed sins?

I wouldn’t talk to you if you did.

I talk to Ben Currie.

He put his hand up and said “It ain’t him with the Boost Paste babe, it was me. Hit me with your best shot, fire away. Just leave the old fella alone”.

The QRIC came into it.

Boof’s disqualification was reduced to a 12 months suspension, suspended for 12 months.

He was back at work the next day, except now he was the boss not Ben.

BRIT

Gregory (Greg) Britnell was a stablehand who did whatever he was told to do.

On the morning of the Weetwood he was told to give the horses some Boost Paste, and did so by using the applicator provided by the manufacturer in the pack.

Boost Paste is a stock standard electrolyte replacement therapy (think Gatorade) for horses that is sold at every stock shop in the country, including Garrard’s Horse and Hound, one of Queensland racing’s biggest sponsors.

The stable hand had no cause at all to question whether giving it a horse was right or wrong, but it didn’t matter. This wasn’t about Greg Britnell, it was about Ben Currie.

Britnell was disqualified for 18 months.

CAM

The licensed participant charged with assisting in the administration was Cameron Schwenke.

He admitted to administering some Currie horses with

Schwenke – who in uncontested evidence told the Stewards evidence that he had ” been … picking up horse shit since I was four years old” – said he didn’t think Boost Paste was a drug on the banned list.

It wasn’t (and isn’t), but Dr Martin Lenz – who, as the title suggests, is a Doctor with big time academic qualifications – poo-pooed Schwenke’s honest defence to the allegation, telling him that any substance  capable at any time of causing either directly or indirectly an action or effect or both an action and effect within one or more of the following mammalian body systems was prohibited.

Before the shit shovel man who’d left school at 15 could ask the good doctor what mammalian meant, and how you spell it, Dr Lenz continued on, telling him that substances that affected these systems included those that had any effect whatsoever on

The nervous system, the cardiovascular system, the respiratory system, the digestive system, the musculo-skeletal system, the endocrine system, the urinary system, the reproductive system, the blood system, (and) the immune system

Meaning of course that food, water and air were prohibited substances under the rules of racing, because among other things, if a horse doesn’t drink water its urinary system is affected (you can’t piss if there is nothing in your bladder), and if it doesn’t eat its digestive system is too (the balance of your stomach acids change if you fast).

And of course if a horse doesn’t have air, then like any mammal – humans, for example – it dies, which is both an action and an effect on all of its mammalian body systems, and tends not to be a real good one either.

Lenz then gave the early school leaver a science lecture.

I can give you a look at this too. The ingredients are listed on the back of the tube, and there are electrolytes and trace elements. So, you know, the normal electrolytes, potassium, sodium. There is magnesium in there – which has obviously an effect on the nervous system – calcium, musculoskeletal system, phosphorous iron on the blood system, cobalt, once again, magnesium. Cobalt you know has several effects, and one of them is on the blood system. Copper, zinc. They all have effects on multiples of these body systems that are listed under AR178B. In addition we have got a host of vitamins – which I won’t list separately – and some essential amino acids. Now, all these substances have effects on one or more of the body systems that are listed in 178B, and as such are classified as prohibited substances under the Rules of Racing. 

Schwenke didn’t have a clue what Lenz was on about, just as he wouldn’t have the fuzziest what I’m talking about. He is a stablehand FFS, not a vet or an investigative writer.

It didn’t matter.

No defence put up by any Currie employee did.

He copped 3 months too.

CANDA

The licensed participant charged with providing false evidence was a young bloke named Silde Canda, who was hauling a shovel in the barns to earn a bit of money to help out his immigrant family, and send his siblings to school.

Canda’s Mum wasn’t well, and he needed his phone to stay in touch with her and call home several times a day to see if she was alright, so he panicked when the QRIC raiders demanded he hand it over without offering him a replacement, and lied and said he’d smashed it, when really it was sitting in open view in the middle compartment of his cheap second hand car.

The impromptu panicked lie lasted all of about 7 seconds before he backtracked and handed the phone over, but he copped three months too.

QBEN12345

Finally.

Funny choice of words.

What’s even funnier is that the whole thing is far from final, just like the arrest of a whole bunch of young trot trainers and drivers wasn’t the end of the matter to do with them and their alleged match-fix cheating either.

Remind me again, how many of those charges stuck?

Mmmm.

QBEN1234

The QRIC Annual Report was released in late 2019.

The jigger charges laid against Ben Currie dated back 4 – 5 years, to 2014 and 2015.

Certain leading Queensland trainers who had been trumped by Boom Boom in the success stakes had run to the head teacher in the new integrity school in 2016.

Urgent animal welfare and integrity issues obviously mean something different to Ross Barnett and his team than it does to Joe the Average Punter.

QBEN12345s

No person is too big to investigate.

That’s why the QRIC team tossed the stables of the trainers in the infield at Eagle Farm a couple of days ago, and for the sake of appearances knocked over the stables of the couple of poor battlers like Lindsay Gough domiciled on the outfield the next day.

It’s just a shame they gave select members of the training fraternity the advance word of the raids, and that they didn’t visit the other places where some of their horses are kept, for if they had the results might have been quite a bit different.

That wasn’t the point though.

The point was to prove that the QRIC were impartial, and the deputation going to meet with Pins and Commissioner on Monday are squeaky clean.

Russ Hinze used to say that there were no brothels in Brisbane too.

It’s true – I was sitting next to my boss the Sunday Sun editor Ron Richards one night when he said it, and so was my mate Matt the Eagle, whose brother was a corrupt copper on the take, who used to work putting caps on bottles at the XXXX brewery only a year or so before.

It was nice of Mr Hinze to get his driver to give me, Mr Richards and the Eagle a lift to the World By Night strip club that Gerry owned after we’d done our arse at the Italian card school too.

After all, we were only fifteen, and pissed as parrots.

How the hell were we going to drive?

 

Dare to Doubt Peter V? – How Bloody Stupid, People Can Be

In today’s Sydney Morning Herald sports reporter Phil Lutton pours scorn on Peter V’Landys stated goal to get the footy fans back into the stands by the 1st of July.

In his wry, smart-arse way, without actually saying it, Lutton paints PVL as a goose, and declares the chances of him having punters in the pews by round 8 as a million to one.

What a bloody idiot. He obviously doesn’t know PVL like I do, and hasn’t studied the form.

Pete doesn’t say he’s going to do something if he’s not going to, or if he can’t.

He’s not that stupid.

If PVL sets a goal, he’s going to kick it, as sure as the sun rises in the morning over the Ionian Sea. There will be bums on seats at the Roosters v Storm game, there’s nothing surer than death, taxes, and Racing Victoria going to water in face of an Everest size shellacking by a Golden Greek bearing an Eagle.

Mud in your eye Phil Lutton.

In exactly 36 days, you’re about to be made to look a fool.

Don’t take it too hard though. Peter does that to a lot of people.

You’d just think that one day people would wake up and learn.

I bet Lutton liked Simply the Best 2020 too.

The Golden Greek Sinks the Slipper Straight Into Archie’s Achilles Heel – And Maggie Kicks Him For Fun While He’s Down Too – Don’t Worry, That Pair Will Get Theirs One Day – In About 2047, I Reckon

pee

Yeah, everyone needs a whipping boy. Me and my big mouth. Why did it have to be me?

Well I’m sad to report that I won’t be taking up Rugby Australia’s offer to save the rich boys game by changing the sport’s name to Gladiator, replacing scrums and line outs with set-piece flying mauls off a run-up into a 10 metre defensive line, introducing a range of innovative new betting options including number of defenders knocked out, concussed or spilling claret, and implementing 90 second time-outs while the attacking flying maul gets set so that punters can get set too.

My plans to revive the deader than the dodo sport for dodo’s (sorry Dr Geoff and Ealesy, you’re my mates, but your code’s gay) was all set and ready to go, but a bunch of limp-wristed, do-gooder activists of the ilk of Peter Fitzsimons and Alan Joyce used their media influence and their sponsorship dough to put the kybosh on the whole thing.

More fool them.

We know Fitzy played in the front-row and is a bit fuzzy these days, but can someone remind me what position Alan Joyce played again? Oh that’s right, the wingman cum flanker switched to number 8 so he could lock the rear-end of the scrum. How could I forget?

Anyway, ra ra’s loss is the greatest game of all’s gain, for the decision of the Rugby Australia Board (who’s on it this week?) to reject my brilliant new ideas to tap into the fast-growing off-season MMA market means that not only will I not be knocking Rugby League off it’s perch, but also that I will be spared the personal anguish of giving my old mate the Golden Greek the sort of fend that Racing Victoria have been dreaming of giving him for years,

I buggered if I now the Golden got wind of the whole rugby thing, but when he called last week in distress about my rumoured code hop and I hosed down his concerns, I heard a massive sight of relief on the other end of the phone and Pete seemed pretty bloody chuffed.

Of course it only lasted about two seconds, then PVL reverted to type and started putting Edgar Britt on me by by claiming that I was travelling so well that even the bums who appointed Raelene ‘the Wrecker’ Castle to ruin the show wouldn’t have me, a barb that h I loudly protested was a cheap shot at a rejected, broken-hearted man, although just between you, me and gatepost I actually thought it was pretty decent shot.

Desperate for a retort and not having much in the locker, I shouted down the phone “Yeah, yeah Golden! You keep chuckling Wollongong boy. You’ll be laughing on the other side of your face when there’s no-one to ref your fist game back you bludger!”.

Then I immediately hung up on him before he had time to fire back.

Maggie – who’d heard me screaming down house when Thunder Mania won, and figuring that I might have won a few bucks or more was lurking around waiting for me to get off the phone from the Greek so she could channel a shark and put on the bite – started laughing at me as I hung up.

“What are you on about you fool?” I asked her.

Maggie laughed again, and then she laughed some more.

“Do you really reckon Peter would be talking tough to the press if he didn’t have the whole ref situation in hand?” she mocked, between giggles. “You bloody idiot. What’s your Neds password?”

It floored me, and I was that shell-shocked by the sudden realisation that I’d just handed V’Landys a free hit that without thinking, I gave it to her too.

Some dishes are best served cold they reckon, and Greeks are bloody good cooks, so the soon to be NRL Hall of Famer sat like a stone for a few days, just to make it hurt more.

Then yesterday, the email the top arrived.

V’landys one, Butterfly nil.

While I was on the floor crying Maggie tool all my punting money too.

Two nil.

It’s a long season though Pete, and I’ve got your number son.

Good work.

Ouch.

I wonder if the Golden Greek’s good for a snip?

cobaz

 

 

 

Iron Mike Couldn’t Fight Anymore in a Paper Bag

Mike Tyson will be 54 years old at the end of June.

He hasn’t fought in a boxing ring for 15 years.

The last time he did, Tyson was humiliated by a no-name bum called Kevin McBride.

Before the McBride debacle finally ended his already long-dead career, Tyson had knocked out a punching bag named Danny Williams, who bore the misspelt monicker of the ‘Brixton Bomber’.

It was meant to be ‘Bummer’.

Williams had struggled to get over the brave, but very limited Aussie Bob Mirovic not long before, and had to disable the Big Fella by smashing him real hard in the balls in order to get the job done. He was no hope against Tyson.

McBride was given no hope either. He had built a solid record fighting no-name bums in ballrooms and bars, but this was Iron Mike, former Heavyweight Champion on the World. There was something that most Tyson fans were too ill-informed to know, and too ignorant to see.

Mike Tyson was shot.

The baddest man on the planet had turned into Mary’s little lamb.

When Mike meekly quit on his seat at the end of the sixth round that was it, No more Tyson. His carnival was over. He was done.

That was fifteen years ago, and Tyson has turned grey and packed on the pounds and smoked ten thousand joints in between. He can no more fight at a professional level than Les Darcy can, and he’s been dead for 100 years.

The whole comeback show can only mean one thing.

Iron Mike is broke again, and the IRS are chasing down his arse. He’s desperate for money to avoid another jail stint, and the only way Tyson knows how to earn it is with his celebrity and his fists.

Someone sling him a few million will they?

It will save Tyson embarrassing boxing, and himself.

Six Months Before COVID-19 Hit, a Die Hard Rugby Tragic Nailed the Problems With Australian Rugby and Raelene Castle Perfectly – Without Even Mentioning Her Name

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We fucked Rugby well and truly didn’t we Raels? – Former banker and RU Chair Cameron Clyne with Ms Castle. Collective top grade rugby games between the pair? – Nil

Cameron Clyne has decided that he has finally done enough for/to Australian Rugby and will not seek re-election as chairman at the Rugby Australia AGM in March next year. During his announcement he highlighted his many achievements as chairman and sought to indicate that his tenure has been positive overall for rugby in Australia. I am sorry Mr Clyne, but I respectfully disagree.

“Notwithstanding the very painful decision to remove the Western Force from the Super Rugby competition and the mixed results of the Wallabies in recent years, “

This statement, for me, sums up Clyne. He has taken the two most significant events of his tenure and summarily dismissed them both as unimportant or secondary. As chairman, Clyne did everything in his power to try and wipe the Force off the map, disenfranchising the third largest rugby community in the country. He also oversaw the greatest decline in the Wallabies ranking and popularity in living memory, thereby disenfranchising most of the rest. I understand why he would like to skip past these dubious “achievements”, but the reality is that these are what will define his tenure when he is judged by history. It is certainly what has defined his tenure as he has been judged by the Australian Rugby public.

“Female participation in rugby has tripled, we’ve seen enormous growth in Sevens participation on the back of the gold medal success of our women’s team”

The growth of the Womens game in Australia is commendable, but his comments require context. Mist of the growth that Clyne talks about here came as a result of the remarkable and awesome upsurge in womens elite sport participation worldwide across all codes, aided substantially by the wonderful run of Aus Womens 7s at the Olympics and the World Series. The problem, 7s aside, is that Rugby is very much being dragged along for the ride in this rather than leading the way. My real fear is that when/if the momentum falls away a bit, there is nothing significant driving continued participation in Womens Rugby in Aus, particularly in the XV’s game. I have said before, Rugby needs to learn from and at least match the opportunities other codes in Australia are offering young up and coming talented sports women, or we will have very few opting for a career in Rugby.

“against global trends in participation we have achieved growth in traditional XVs rugby in several states and territories.”

According to World Rugby (on their website), the total number of registered rugby players worldwide grew from 2.82 million to 3.2 million in 2016 alone. By any measure I have seen, rugby is growing at a much healthier rate globally than it is in Australia. But let’s look at what Clyne has done to grow the game. During his tenure the number of Australian teams in Super Rugby has reduced from 5 to 4, with rumours growing that we will continue all the way back to “the good old days” and make it 3. The NRC, a true vehicle for growth, has struggled through a woeful lack of promotion, which is especially galling when you remember that an offer of $50 million dollars for the NRC was knocked back by Clyne. If Rugby is indeed growing in this country, I would argue it is in spite of rather because of the actions of Cameron Clyne.

Clyne will officially step down in April, meaning there is still plenty of time left for him to exert his influence on RA. There are two major decisions currently pending with RA, a new broadcast deal for Super Rugby and the appointment of a new Wallabies Coach (announced yesterday as Dave Rennie). Both of these decisions are vitally important for Australian Rugby going forward and it concerns me that Clyne will still have his hand firmly in both of these decisions. That means we could still be experiencing Clynes influence 4 years after he steps down from the role. I don’t see this as good business practice, for any organisation. By all means keep him on until he can give a proper hand-over to his anointed successor, but please keep him away from any long term, important decisions please.

There are many who are celebrating the fact that Clyne is stepping down but I don’t count myself among them. Instead I mourn the fact that it didn’t happen sooner and fret about who the replacement may be. In fact, April provides a solid chance for some real generational change on the RA board as there are currently 4 positions open. Please RA, don’t give us another bunch of bankers.

http://www.greenandgoldrugby.com/the-de-clyne-of-australian-rugby/

It’s Time – The Season’s About to Restart – Everyone in Australia Wants Peter V’Landys to be the CEO of the NRL – Let’s Just Do It

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I’ve been lauding Peter V’Landys for years now, and I’ve been telling you for months that despite the modest denials, he’s a lay down misere to be the CEO of Rugby League.

What a wonderful thing it will be for footy too.

The game’s future will be secure for the next 20 years.

Pete’s only got one flaw in my view, and that is that despite having a reputation amongst losers as a lore-breaking maverick who doesn’t give a toss for social conventions and tradition, V’Landys is actually quite the conservative.

Like Churchill, Weary Dunlop and Alexander the Great before him, Peter V’Landys will stand out in front of his front line in a war and scream “come and get me you bastards” to the enemy of the day, and in doing so inspire his troops to follow him and die for him, because he’d die for them too.

And just like Albert Jacka, if V’Landys followers were ambushed by a bunch of Huns, he’d jump into the trench and kill every bastard who rabbit punched them and put them in chains, and then he’d jump back out and chase the cowards who ran away.

But like all of the blokes above, V’Landys is a strategic incrementalist.

Only fools rush in where angels fear to tread unless they have to, and PVL doesn’t, because he’s the greatest certainty since Winx to become the boss of Rugby League, and so he’s doing it in fast tracked tippy toes and knocking out rival generals by attrition in wide-sweeping and well considered steps.

The media is a big part of it.

Journos love V’Landys, because they know he’s fair dinkum, and most writers have been around the block so many times, and seen enough to know that in sporting administration terms, he’s the messiah.

Footy writers love footy, and they know that there hasn’t been anyone in the game ever who is going to run the sport as well as Pete will, o they laud his praises and they shoot all his imaginary opponents down, just as Buzz Rothfield has in his demolition job on the NRL’s acting CEO Andrew Abdo in the Daily Telegraph today.

Don’t get me wrong, I agree with every word Rothfield says. Latrell Mitchell was treated like shit and Nathan Cleary got away with murder. That of course is about to change, and the Albo is going himself look like an absolute bloody fool, which judging by his handling of the Cleary matter he obviously is.

Why the hell wouldn’t the bloke in charge of footy identify the supermodels in the posted pics, go and see them to have a chat and find out what went on, identify that videos were made, and act on it before someone else found out and made him look like an idiot?

It defies belief that he didn’t.

Peter V’Landys would have, and that’s why it’s time to stop all this flash jabbing and parrying and slow circling nonsense, and just bring the whole matter to a head.

It’s up to PVL to do it. All he is to say is I wanna run the joint, and his wish will be the whole rugby league world’s command.

The only reasons that he hasn’t yet is because (a) he’s a man of honor who wants to fulfil his contract to Racing NSW and not let them down, and (b) he’s a conservative at heart.

Bugger that Pete.

The bloke can steer the greatest game of all through a once in a lifetime crisis that could have killed it, and do it from his desk at the racing office in town.

Does anyone really think that he’d have a problem running racing from an office at the NRL?

It’s time.

The season’s about to restart.

Let’s do it.