Jump to content

Rugby League World
League Express
Rugby League Yearbook 2015-2016

Richard de la Riviere

Member Since 30 Apr 2005
Offline Last Active Yesterday, 09:02 PM

#3238834 Schofield reacts to Peacock criticism

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 24 November 2015 - 07:04 PM

I agree Richard you can't judge the wins/defeats on the contributions of one player. There is a lot of context to take into account.

For example during 88-94 we had a regular international programme with players committed to it and a half decent coach. After 1995 we had a half baked approach which is borne out by the GB results.

Clubs became more powerful and withheld players and internationals weren't as important.

There really are so many variables in this argument it's very hard to say who was better with any certainty.

On what modern halfbacks might have that Greg and Schoey might not consider this: I'm not sure if any current halfback apart from maybe Brough has the ability to go "off tour" like Andy Greg did in 84 and 92. Also Halfbacks now are more disciplined than Gregory. On Schofield the case is harder to make as he was more consistent.

Do coaches nowadays out more store in having a stable personality and the "right" attitude than a player like Gregory who was hard work but top quality and occasionally a genius?

Maybe that's why we see fewer gifted halfbacks? Mavericks are harder to coach.

I agree with a lot of this because there's no other explanation for the lack of international football played by Martyn, Briers and Brough.


I certainly agree that we've barely had a top-class international coach since Mal Reilly. Nobby did a decent job but, as Garry pointed out in the column referred to in this thread, he was forever rotating his halves and never settled on a good pairing.


One of the biggest problems is that players like Harris, Long, McGuire, Pryce and Burrow have found it easy to make fools of defences in Super League with the firmer grounds of the summer era, the ten metre rule and the fact they played behind dominant packs suiting their individual skills and footwork. Not so easy though playing against a dominant Kangaroo side when you're ankle deep in mud in the middle of November. In those circumstances you need some creativity, organisation and a kicking game. And those guys, compared to Schofield, Fox and Edwards, were generally found wanting.

#3238009 Schofield reacts to Peacock criticism

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 22 November 2015 - 09:27 PM

If you could have had Gregory & Schofield instead of Widdop & Smith in the series...would you have took them?

No. Widdop and Smith can do more sit-ups.

#3237996 Schofield reacts to Peacock criticism

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 22 November 2015 - 09:10 PM

What are you talking about at no point did I say they weren't great players but if you think any sport in the world has gone backwards in the last 25 yrs your kidding yourself. Players can only be judge in the era they play in and as such these are all greats of the game. What your suggesting is at a time when these players spent most of their careers training like NCL teams we some how had a magic formula to produce these great players. Whilst at the same time not taking into account that the players around them trained in the same way. This was a very exiting era for the sport but part of the contribution to that is the fact most of the players were either semi pro or had just turned pro.

I think you're over-estimating the progress that has actually been made. Whilst players are fitter today than in the 85-95 era, it's come at the expense of skills. Today's 6, 7 and 13 can't lace the boots of the 1990 team and they're the most important positions on the field (assuming the 13 is a ballplayer). And given that was Garry's original point, I'm not really sure we're getting anywhere. The halves from his era, well most of them that played for GB, are light years ahead of those of the summer era.

#3237981 Schofield reacts to Peacock criticism

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 22 November 2015 - 08:46 PM

Pluck straight out of 1990 my point still stands this years England team would put 30pts on them.

Flabbergasted. Four Hall of Famers in the 1990 squad. Can you really see, for instance, Ryan Hall, James Roby, James Graham and Sean O'Loughlin being inducted in that one day?

#3237949 Schofield reacts to Peacock criticism

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 22 November 2015 - 07:56 PM

Having just looked at the 1990 GB ashes squad..i will take that over your present England one.

The GB team for the 1st Test at Wembley was: Steve Hampson; Paul Eastwood (2t, 3g), Daryl Powell, Carl Gibson, Martin Offiah (1t); Garry Schofield (1dg), Andy Gregory; Karl Harrison, Lee Jackson, Paul Dixon, Denis Betts, Roy Powell, Ellery Hanley ©. S: Shaun Edwards (dnp), Kevin Ward, David Hulme (dnp), Karl Fairbank.

I'd say players 1-5 are quite similar to today. For shirts 8-12 I'd probably go with today's team. But 1990 would win, and by a reasonable margin, because of Schofield, Gregory and Hanley, the big players in the most important positions.

Edwards couldn't get a game. He'd be the captain and go-to man in today's side.


#3237848 Schofield reacts to Peacock criticism

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 22 November 2015 - 02:42 PM

In 84 they were miles ahead of us - 12-0, 28-12 & 32-16. Garry missed the last two of those tests btw.


And the previous time they played us, it was 1-1 in a series over here - they had the moral victory in that. In 83 NZ beat the Australians in Brisbane. That was a level we were nowhere near. It wasn't until 1985 that we started to close the gap.


Of course, this is well off topic - and apologies for my part in that. All Garry said was that we were better off for halfbacks in his day. I'm still surprised that's even up for debate.

#3237698 Schofield reacts to Peacock criticism

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 22 November 2015 - 02:31 AM

Perhaps Garry could write an interesting article about why GB used to lose in series vs Aus and World Cups in the past despite having far more creative half backs than there are now in the international team. That might be worth reading... 

I don't know what Garry would say, but I'd say two things. First, Australia in the 80s and 90s had a far better team than in last year's 4N. Second, whilst GB back then couldn't beat Aus in a series, they (or England) at least won regular Tests (88, 90, 92, 94, 95) whereas when next year's 4N begins, it will be ten years since we last beat Australia in any sort of match. We also came very close to winning the Ashes in 1990 and 1992 and the World Cup in 1992. What's the nearest we've been to winning a series which included Aus in the Super League era? A 20-pt defeat in an Ashes decider in 2001 and a 4N final in 2011? All three Tests were close in 2003, but we were still whitewashed.


If you can look past the comparisons to Garry's era, I don't think it's unreasonable to suggest that we have struggled massively in the halves since 1996.

#3160977 Town v Broncos

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 19 July 2015 - 09:55 PM

OK so now its (as we stand) Donny are relegated.

Fev,Dewsbury,London,Town ,Batley,Jambos and Hunslet now play 3 games home 4 game away (depending) and the bottom of the group join Donny in the Championship ??

Only yhe RFL could think of this...Leigh Bradford Sheffield and Halifax play for BIG MONEY against the bottom 4 of Super League and Fev who just miss out could get 100% injury list then lose every game in the play offs and get relegated to to the Southern/welsh league..Love it :-)

Points are carried over, so Fev won't be in any danger

#3156932 Haven reaction

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 12 July 2015 - 04:30 PM

Get in!

#3041862 Rugby League, A Critical History 1980-2013

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 06 December 2014 - 08:06 PM

Thanks mate, glad you enjoyed it :)

#3031245 Ed Miliband

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 11 November 2014 - 01:19 PM

UKIP are a threat to both the Tories and Labour.

This is only true insofar as they're taking votes from both parties, but if Labour could wave a magic wand and get rid of UKIP, would they? No chance! And that's because UKIP are hurting the Tories far more. They're taking Tory votes to Labour votes at a ratio of 3.5 to 1, and crucially whilst they're hurting the Tories in marginals, they're taking Labour votes in Labour heartlands where they won't do much damage seat wise.

#3013218 2015 Election debates

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 13 October 2014 - 05:26 PM

If there were a general election today, I genuinely think the Lib Dems would struggle to get 25 MPs.  I think it's fairly nailed on that UKIP will get over 30.  So, yes, I think UKIP will out-rank the Lib Dems in both overall voter percentage and returned MPs.  I'm not a gambling man but on this, what about £20 to a mutually agreed charity from the loser?  RFL Benevolent Fund?  MIND?  British Legion?  Cancer Research?

OK, £20 Cancer Research.

As for the debates, Cameron was interviewed on tv earlier and although he started by saying that he was totally in favour of debates he then went on to criticise the proposed format. Word is that he has always been against them so it'll be interesting to see if he can be pinned down and agree to anything.


I'd have thought he'd have been pleased with this though, as he only has to go up against Farage once yet gets to have three cracks at Miliband. It's widely accepted that the Tories will try to turn the election into a presidential style battle between Cameron and Miliband, so this proposal should suit him.


  • ckn likes this

#2932320 Ed Miliband

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 20 May 2014 - 12:01 AM



If it were as easy as you make out to predict the result based on past voting percentages and a biased electoral system, there'd be little point in bothering with a campaign.

I don't think it's easy to predict, because there are still three possible outcomes: Labour majority, Labour minority or Tory minority. All I'm predicting is no Tory majority, although if Ashcroft reveals on Saturday that the Tories have significantly closed the gap in the marginals from his poll last summer which showed Labour 14pts ahead (twice their national lead) and if the Scots vote for independence (currently 58-42% in favour of No with the gap now widening), then I might revise that.

As for the 3rd and 4th parties, the polls have consistently pointed to one pattern and that is Labour benefitting massively. The key is the 2010 Lib Dem voters. Contrary to popular belief, they actually did very well in the last election with 6.8m votes, and between 25 and 40% of those have told the polls every week since 2010 that they will vote Labour. That is a huge number and it has to reduce significantly to deny Labour. Then there's the 2010 Cons who plan to vote UKIP. That number isn't reducing, but worryingly for Labour, UKIP are now picking up their voters. That might turn into the biggest battleground, but there's little that Crosby and the papers can do about LDs defecting to Labour, and it's that group, above all, which decides whether Miliband gets the key to no10.


You're right that 1992 wasn't predictable, but the main reason for that is that the poll companies got the figures wrong. Their methods were proven to be flawed. They overstated Labour's lead by not taking into account what's now referred to as Shy Tory Factor so it's a myth that millions of people changed their mind at the last minute. They've since altered how they deal with the 'Don't Know' responses to take this into account, and they've also introduced weighted and unweighted samples. If anything, the polls are now overstating the Conservative position, although if that's true the margin of error will be far less. The other pattern that is different is that voters tend not to move from Conservative to Labour or vice versa. They go to another party now, so swings are less pronounced.

#2727133 Rugby League: A Critical History 1980-2013

Posted by Richard de la Riviere on 20 June 2013 - 11:40 AM

Both I hope! Here is the contents list:


Foreword by Garry Schofield

CH1 International RL 1980-95
CH2 International RL 1996-2012

CH3 British RL 1980-1996

CH4 The Super League War

CH5 Super League

CH6 Summer Rugby - Has it Worked?

CH7 Australian Rugby League

CH8 The History of State of Origin

CH9 The Story of The Golden Boot

CH10 The 100 Greatest Players (1980-2012)

CH11 Full Statistical wrap-up - full match details of all GB & England internationals, major finals, award winners & a full list of World XIIIs from 1980