After watching week after week the deification of KC* by Sky (and indeed seeing League Express's views on his importance - how can a little thing like being the best team over 7 months compare with scoring a try in a game your team had already won in the 3rd from final game at a ground), I wonder whether he is a British great as opposed to a Saints great.
He is the finest 9 I have seen and a one man victory machine for his club. A couple of things give me pause for thought about his place in the history of the game...
Does his international career match his ability? My recollection is that he had a couple of brilliant games for Wales and one good series for GB, which puts his career somewhere between Gilmour's and Briers, and a million miles behind Schofield and even Farrell (who dirched his club and country).
Second, as I understand it he was given performance enhancing drugs without his knowledge. While clearly he is blameless, don't those things have a long lasting (see Dwain Chambers) and substantial benefit? Without attaching any blame to him, why is this subject never touched on (and why do hookers seem to have a propensity for these things?)?
If his career is compared to Morley or a true great like Hanley, then he falls a long way short to my mind, in that these were players who conquered the Aussies in their own back yard and had long and glorious international careers. Certainly, KC* deserves huge accolades, but I trust Morley will get this and far more when he hangs his boots up.
A Local Hero but not a British great?
So I take it that you also believe the same of Tiger Woods. They greatest golfer to grace the planet in most professionals minds. However if we use your measure of a man, has played poorly in USA teams in every rider cup. So just an good golf from the USA, not the best ever.
You mention Cunningham's International career, but it's quite well known that for the last 5 years, he has been retired from international Rugby. And prior to that he always seamed to be injured for the international season. During that time Terry Newton played hooker for GB more than Cunningham did, however during the actual domestic season Newton would be 2nd or even 3rd behind the likes of Jimmy Lowes. However Jimmy lowes face just did not fit with the GB coaching set up.
I don't recall Farrell or Hanley or Scofield or sculthorpe actually winning anything internationally. The GB side has been on a 40 year losing streak, but just because the GB side is poor does not mean all of the above can be discounted as legends. If it's the attention from SKY that you're decrying, well that's fair enough, Sculthorpe did not get this, but his career was cut unexpectedly short. Farrell did not retire but moved on and was also out with injury for his last year (but we still got to see his bashed up nose on reruns). Sky where not into the hype as much at the time of hanley and Scofield was gone long before that.
The same could have been said for cunningham if he had actually had a broken jaw from the crusaders game. If his career ended short in that game there would have been none of the adulation that he has been given.
I would not expect the same for Morley, but I'm sure when briers calls it a day he too will be given the credit he deserves he also has carried the warrington team for the last 10 years until the rest of the stars came when the money arrived.
Briers is another who face did not fit with the GB coaching team set up, but that does not deny the quality of the man just because he's not the insitutions cover boy.