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  1. Agreed. I spent a little bit of time on YouTube yesterday reminding myself of Rugby League 1980's vintage. I ended up watching 20 minutes of highlights of '85 Challenge Cup final between Wigan and Hull.... Kenny, Sterling, Leuluai and all. I assume that this was representative of all 80' League! Of course my point is that nostalgia plays a big part here and we only remember the great games and only re-watch the best players and matches. I was at that '85 final and of course I remember it fondly but I too sat through some pretty average rugby at Central Park through that decade. It is human nature in action. I try to remind myself that while there are parts of RL today that I find frustrating, it is still a fantastic game to watch.
  2. I have spent the weekend pondering this thread as I think it is a very honest and open discussion on the game in the UK today. If I am being brutally honest I have to say I do not enjoy watching Super League as much as I used to... and it pains me to say this as I am a proud Rugby League man who tries to champion our sport at every opportunity. I do not think it is the quality of the players at fault, I think they are as athletic and skilful as they have ever been (perhaps more so) but the game is frustrating to watch because of what it has allowed to become. It is very niggly with teams constantly looking for spoiling tactics to win possession and slow down the attacking threat. Every play is a lottery to which side the penalty will go. Again though, I do not think we can blame the current crop of refs as they have inherited a very strange situation. In any game of Super League literally every single play is an infringement of the laws of the game. Every scrum and every play the ball breaks the laws as they are set down in the rule book. It has been allowed to become this over a long time and it did not arrive overnight... the game today is what the players, coaches, administrators and fans have allowed it to become and the laws of the game today are the laws by common consensus rather than how they are laid down. We examine a lead runner play for obstruction in minute detail through five or six replays but allow the ridiculous attempt at the play the ball that went before it go unpunished. How are the ref's supposed to cope with this? They have been conditioned to completely ignore so many infringements and yet when they do blow a penalty they are accused of being whistle happy. I felt that the NRL was on the verge of this problem last year but this season they have really addressed it with the game being played as I remember it with tough tackles, proper play the balls requiring inventive and skilful attacking play. The NRL today is how Rugby League should be played and my greatest hope is that the Super League follows suit as quickly as possible.
  3. It’s All the World Cup’s Fault

    So to summarise the article. The World Cup has led to poor form for the players who played in the World Cup and who are in poor form but for the players who played in the World Cup who are in good form the World Cup had no effect on their form.
  4. More problems for Big Sam?

    It was a bad one and probably should have been red. Souths coach pulled him off (the pitch!) shortly after which was a pity for Sam as he was absolutel outstanding for the first 59 minutes of that game... probably his best game since his MoM in the 2014 Grand Final.
  5. The Sharks Storm game may have been the worst but (almost) every game I have seen this year, around 3 a week, has seen the commentary team comment on the penalty count. It's a big talking point in Australia at the moment and it wouldn't be if it were just one isolated game.
  6. While I don't disagree with your overall point, the situation is by no means unique to the UK. The NRL is being heavily criticised by pundits and fans this year for penalty counts spoiling the game and removing the attritional element. The recent Cronulla Melbourne game had 30 penalties and pretty much every game this year has been a penaltyathon.
  7. I haven't read the full 5 pages but I have to say I really enjoy the Super 8 concept. When the split comes, I enjoy seeing how the top Championship sides fare against Super League opposition. Of course there are some blowouts but the chance of an upset is what makes sport so enjoyable. If this year we end up seeing London, Toronto, Fev and Toulouse in the 8's I will be in for a treat.
  8. Best fullback of his generation?

    Some tremendous footage of Slater there, he is a wonderfully entertaining player and definitely the best of his generation. But I am wondering why you posted them in defence of his passing game... he actually only passes the ball once in each video. Are you saying you never noticed he has a bad passing game because he never passes the ball?
  9. Just finished watching this on the iPlayer as I travel down from Leeds to London on the train. The part about the black players and how they were treated by the League clubs and the League community was very powerful. A couple of times I had to wipe a tear from my eye (maybe the glass of red wine helped!). I have always been proud of being a Rugby League man and tonight, as I listened to how our sport was the first to break down these barriers, I am a little more proud than ever.
  10. Why no mention of Ryan Atkins

    I expect Gildart to be the next quality left centre. Gildart and Watkins in the centres could be very good.
  11. Why no mention of Ryan Atkins

    If you turn the sound off, watch in black and white and squint then that is a wonderful length of the field try.
  12. Yes, I agree with both of these points. Australia will always have top class players and I see Cleary as the next great half back... but I don't see a 6, 7 & 9 combination he quality of Thurston, Cronk and Smith on the horizon.
  13. I agree that Clearly is not necessarily going to be better Cronk but everything we know about him so far suggests he can be. After Sterling we got Stuart After Stuart we got Langer After Langer we got Johns After Jonhs we got Cronk And plenty more as well There is always another great in development because of the talent pool and the development process Australia has. In my view this is Cleary but he could fall away and it could be somebody else. And they may end up being even better than anyone named above. The point is we won't win the 2021 World Cup by hoping Australia get worse.
  14. Cherry Evans and Pearce are both 28 and Norman is 26. Austraia will be weaker after Thrston and Cronk if any of these get selected as they would have supplanted the two already if they were better than them. Clearly is different though as he is only 20. There is a reasonable argument to say that he is well ahead of where Cronk and Thurston were at the same stage of their development. There is no reason why he couldn't go on to be as good (if not better!) than both of them.