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boxhead

Matthew Johns: Sorry bro, but Johnathan Thurston will be better than you

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JOHNATHAN Thurston will surpass Andrew Johns as the greatest rugby league halfback our game has ever seen within two years.

The baton will be passed as it has many times before.

The way Keith Holman passed it to Billy Smith, who in turn was surpassed by Peter Sterling, who handed the torch to Allan Langer and onto Joey.

No position in the game is scrutinised like the halfback and the men who wear the No. 7 jersey are most open to comparison, regardless the era.

While other positions have evolved and changed in their requirements, the halfback role has maintained its core requirements: creativity and direction.

That's why Thurston this week re-signed with the Cowboys in a deal worth $5 million over the next four years. It's the richest deal in rugby league history - and a bargain for North Queensland.

Not a bad deal at 29 years of age.

More here.

http://www.courierma...x-1226596670151

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Thurston is absolutely brilliant, pleased he is sticking not only with RL but his club.

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Difficult to say, Joey tarnished his own legacy with his post career drug confessions (even though they weren't performance enhancers). Truth is though, at their peak I'd have either in my team.

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TBF I don't think there is much in them now. Thurston single handedly was the difference between the Cowboys and the Dogs last week. He's a player you love to watch. It's just a shame he plays for the cowboys and not more exciting team. If he played in Sydney I reckon this would have been mentioned before now.

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It's just a shame he plays for the cowboys and not more exciting team. If he played in Sydney I reckon this would have been mentioned before now.

Some players, Johns included, are true "one-club"* players and revel in being the big fish in the pond. Much like Lee Briers at Warrington up until the last 2-3 years.

*(pedantically, Thurston and Briers moved to their respective longevity clubs, but the point still stands)

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I'm a bit young to know, but could any of those even lace Alex Murphy's boots?

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Johns was a great player but 'The Best Ever' not for me, I'm not saying he wasn't up there as a superb player just that he's overhyped into something he wasn't. Thurston is a better player than Johns was but as good as he is Jonathan Thurston isn't 'The Best Ever' either.

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Doubt anyone is the best ever but Thurston has to be up there. I bet he could have made it in any football code.

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I bet he could have made it in any football code.

Which brings me to this, apparently Karmichael Hunt is the Greatest Ever!

It just goes to show how modern day football players can, via media hype, commentator superlatives and a bit of PR, attain a status way beyond that which their skills and ability ought to dictate.

http://www.foxsports.com.au/afl/afl-premiership/leading-fitness-guru-mounts-case-that-karmichael-hunt-is-the-greatest-footballer-australia-has-produced/story-e6frf3e3-1226353545372#.UUL8NmtYCSM

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Thornton could, IMO, have made it in soccer too. No way is KH anywhere near Thurston as a footballer .

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In the 4 Nations final at Elland Road the year before last, Thurston - coming into the game under an injury cloud - dictated England's downfall while seemingly hobbling about on one leg... but, with Johns mentioning Holman in the article, it is worth pointing out that the history books suggest that the latter was destroyed by a teenage Alex Murphy on his first Lions tour. The "best ever" doesn't necessarily always have to mean that the player in question is an Australian.

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Which brings me to this, apparently Karmichael Hunt is the Greatest Ever!

It just goes to show how modern day football players can, via media hype, commentator superlatives and a bit of PR, attain a status way beyond that which their skills and ability ought to dictate.

http://www.foxsports...72#.UUL8NmtYCSM

That link buggered my internet! Once closed it kept opening two more pages. :angry:

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Karmichael Hunt was this biggest over hyped player ever.

He ran the ball back like a Second Rower...... what else did he do.

I cringed every time I saw him selected for a rep team, Club teams can pick who they want but you want the best at Rep level.

When he signed for AFL my thoughts were not a bad player to lose to the dark side.

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In the 4 Nations final at Elland Road the year before last, Thurston - coming into the game under an injury cloud - dictated England's downfall while seemingly hobbling about on one leg... but, with Johns mentioning Holman in the article, it is worth pointing out that the history books suggest that the latter was destroyed by a teenage Alex Murphy on his first Lions tour. The "best ever" doesn't necessarily always have to mean that the player in question is an Australian.

The game has moved on so much though and different eras can not be compared in a fair way.

The days when players were part time and each body type had a certain spot in a team are not recognizable nowadays.

Best ever call in this article is just a media seller but Thurston is the best in recent times.

Remember Andy Gregory? would he be up there in this day and age? His skill set and more so his body type and athleticism would see him not be near any first grade team in 2013

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Shouldn't this be in the NRL forum?

I guess so if we want no one to see it.

I thought the main Forum could use a few new posts....

I will refrain from posting any threads at all.

Cheers.

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The game has moved on so much though and different eras can not be compared in a fair way.

The days when players were part time and each body type a certain spot in a team are not recognizable nowadays.

Best ever call in this article is just a media seller but Thurston is the best in recent times.

Remember Andy Gregory? would he be up there in this day and age? His skill set and more so his body type and athleticism would see him not be near any first grade team in 2013

I would have Thurston in my World X111 too and recognise his worth - but it was Johns who placed Holman among the greats and I felt it worth pointing out that he was famously ruined by a teenage genius in Alex Murphy in his first Lions tour of 1958. Too few Australian journalists, fans and players acknowledge that many of the greatest players and teams in the history of the game were other than Australian...

I disagree with your point about Gregory: His body shape, even as a teenager playing for Widnes at Wembley, was one of the curious things about him - but his creative play, his accelerative bursts and his fearlessness would mark him out as a great in any era. Thurston is great not because of his athleticism - he isn't fast on his feet and he lacks the confrontational fire that helped to make some of the greats such as Gregory stand out... but he is fast in his head and relentlessly creative and decisive in his play-making.

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I guess so if we want no one to see it.

If I want to read threads about the NRL I'll go to the NRL forum. If no one uses the NRL forum that's not my problem.

I thought the main Forum could use a few new posts.....

Feel free, just as long as they are relevant to the forum you post in

I will refrain from posting any threads at all.

Cheers..

That's entirely up to you.

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I guess so if we want no one to see it.

I thought the main Forum could use a few new posts....

I will refrain from posting any threads at all.

Cheers.

I enjoy reading your posts and would miss them. Please carry on...

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Thurston is great not because of his athleticism - he isn't fast on his feet and he lacks the confrontational fire that helped to make some of the greats such as Gregory stand out... but he is fast in his head and relentlessly creative and decisive in his play-making.

Absolutely spot on. Like the way Lockyer used to seem to have all day to kick and make a decision.

I won't even mention goalkicking.

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The game has moved on so much though and different eras can not be compared in a fair way.

The days when players were part time and each body type had a certain spot in a team are not recognizable nowadays.

Best ever call in this article is just a media seller but Thurston is the best in recent times.

Remember Andy Gregory? would he be up there in this day and age? His skill set and more so his body type and athleticism would see him not be near any first grade team in 2013

I am old enough to have seen Murphy in his prime and he was the best I ever saw.He had blinding pace, a mesmerishing sidestep, a great reader of the game whereby he know when to pass. When many of those skills deteriorated with age, he became a creator in chief. he could kick for touch and drop goals became his speciality. He took an average Leigh team to a Wembley win late in his career and, just to prove it was no fluke, he moved to Warrington and transformed them into winners, all this in the twilight of his career.

In his international hay day he terrified the Aussies. I remember watching him pick the ball up 60 yards from the australian line in Australia and from the base of the scrum beat every Australian to score.

As for the point that he cannot be compared to todays players I will say he played in an era of the 5 yards back from the play the ball. He played in an era when designated head hunters routinely stiff armed half backs with little retribution from the ref. In my opinion, if he was at his prime today, he would absolutly destroy modern defences with the extra 5 yards in which to attack.

Murphy was the best half back I ever saw.

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I would have Thurston in my World X111 too and recognise his worth - but it was Johns who placed Holman among the greats and I felt it worth pointing out that he was famously ruined by a teenage genius in Alex Murphy in his first Lions tour of 1958. Too few Australian journalists, fans and players acknowledge that many of the greatest players and teams in the history of the game were other than Australian...

I disagree with your point about Gregory: His body shape, even as a teenager playing for Widnes at Wembley, was one of the curious things about him - but his creative play, his accelerative bursts and his fearlessness would mark him out as a great in any era. Thurston is great not because of his athleticism - he isn't fast on his feet and he lacks the confrontational fire that helped to make some of the greats such as Gregory stand out... but he is fast in his head and relentlessly creative and decisive in his play-making.

I agree with some of your points but Thurston has had pace and acceleration, he may have slowed as he has got older but a few years ago not many players would have run him down if he went through the line.

Gregory did a pretty good job for Great Britain, not so much when he tried his hand in Australia at Illawarra .

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I guess so if we want no one to see it.

I thought the main Forum could use a few new posts....

I will refrain from posting any threads at all.

Cheers.

Don't be silly. You have the NRL balance just perfect in what you post - stuff that is of genuine interest to all fans of the game, without delving too deep into the game over there and you provide some great debate.

I don't agree with a lot of what you post in terms of content - it's too Aussie biased (as evidenced by this thread listing only great Aussie half-backs) and ignorant of the game and history here, but it still makes for great discussion for a forum.

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