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3 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

What's wrong with Niall Evalds, he is a quality full back.

He is a good standard SL player who has played at Salford and Castleford plus Barrow and Halifax on loan. At 28 he is hardly a young buck either.

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2 minutes ago, Scubby said:

He is a good standard SL player who has played at Salford and Castleford plus Barrow and Halifax on loan. At 28 he is hardly a young buck either.

True, but I don't think he deserves to be in a list of English players used to deride our quality compared to other nations.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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I’d imagine the coaching appointment will play a major role in many of the better players listed previously making themselves available for Samoa.

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18 minutes ago, Scubby said:

Maybe but Australia can only pick 24 for the WC. When you have Tedesco, Turbo (x2 plus Jake), Mitchell, Cleary, Munster, Papenhuyzen, Keary, Grant, Cook, Campbell Haas, Fifita, Gillard, Radley, Murray etc. - you can't really load your squad with Samoans and Tongans and weaken those teams. 

Not upto date with all the latest origin eligibility rules but can you represent either NSW or Queensland and a tier2 nation like Samoa?

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1 minute ago, Tony Angelino said:

Not upto date with all the latest origin eligibility rules but can you represent either NSW or Queensland and a tier2 nation like Samoa?

Yes, you can.  Origin has its own stand alone eligibility rules outside of the international game.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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16 minutes ago, Tony Angelino said:

That’s Potentially good news regarding the World Cup if not this proposed match during origin.

I think it is great news.  I know some people would prefer integrity in the international game and no switching etc. or that Origin means you are putting your hands up for the Kangaroos but personally the more elite players we can get over here in the Autumn for the World Cup the better.  

Samoa, Fiji, Tonga and Cook Islands will have very good sides... better than if some of their top players stayed at home looking for Kiwi or Kangaroo caps later down the line.

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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4 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

I think it is great news.  I know some people would prefer integrity in the international game and no switching etc. or that Origin means you are putting your hands up for the Kangaroos but personally the more elite players we can get over here in the Autumn for the World Cup the better.  

Samoa, Fiji, Tonga and Cook Islands will have very good sides... better than if some of their top players stayed at home looking for Kiwi or Kangaroo caps later down the line.

Agreed, Origin isn't going away. Also the number of Polynesian players in the NRL is exploding and could tip 50% in the next few years. That means a huge swathe of high quality NRL players feeding the Pacific Island teams.

If Samoa get it together this year, England are in big danger of losing the opening game. A loss would mean a Tonga QF.

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3 minutes ago, Dunbar said:

I think it is great news.  I know some people would prefer integrity in the international game and no switching etc. or that Origin means you are putting your hands up for the Kangaroos but personally the more elite players we can get over here in the Autumn for the World Cup the better.  

Samoa, Fiji, Tonga and Cook Islands will have very good sides... better than if some of their top players stayed at home looking for Kiwi or Kangaroo caps later down the line.

To be honest I’m split about the decision as like you it makes for a potentially competitive World Cup but I’d just wish that there wasn’t any allegiance hopping between countries.

Interesting to note that I believe rugby Union is going down the same path allowing dual representation at international level which indicates to me the threat of Tonga RL and RL in the pacific in general poses to RU.

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6 minutes ago, Tony Angelino said:

To be honest I’m split about the decision as like you it makes for a potentially competitive World Cup but I’d just wish that there wasn’t any allegiance hopping between countries.

I absolutely get that.  I lean in favour of it due to the benefit for the international game.

The root cause is the strength of the NRL and the fact that so many players are dual eligible despite being Aussie born.  I think we have to be pragmatic and showcase the most talent we can internationally. 

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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Just now, Dunbar said:

I absolutely get that.  I lean in favour of it due to the benefit for the international game.

The root cause is the strength of the NRL and the fact that so many players are dual eligible despite being Aussie born.  I think we have to be pragmatic and showcase the most talent we can internationally. 

I guess I’d be more supportive of the idea if there was an actual long-term pacific plan/strategy by the NRL which btw for me is a no-brainer. 

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Even just from the Samoan eligible players in Super League and the top end of the Championship you could put together a highly competitive team if well coached and motivated.

If they can get someone like Big Nelson or Tino to commit early it could act like a big recruiting carrot much as Jason Taumololo signing up well before the last World Cup persuaded many others to join forces for Tonga and rep their heritage.

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11 hours ago, Harry Stottle said:

As I said previously, what about Greece v Lebanon, they will be nearly all Aussie's, no overseas travelling involved.

Yep you're spot on Harry, Lebanon played in one of these mid-season fixtures a couple of years ago so no reason they can't do it again.

I haven't heard a great deal out of the Lebanon camp recently to be honest, Michael Cheika of all people was appointed as coach for last year but I believe he's in another RU job now so I'm not sure if he'll carry on his role with Lebanon this year.

 

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The NRL using the standalone SOO weekend to ''relaunch'' international RL, according to the Oz media source.

Jeez, have to admit I find this self-importance and NRL-focused viewpoint rather nauseating.

To see the NRL being described as saviours re-launching internationals is a rather audacious example of the paid-up media in lock-step with NRL messaging.

The Parish news is probably jolly good news for SAMOA. Hope they get out a solid team for the test match.

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18 minutes ago, UTK said:

Yep you're spot on Harry, Lebanon played in one of these mid-season fixtures a couple of years ago so no reason they can't do it again.

I haven't heard a great deal out of the Lebanon camp recently to be honest, Michael Cheika of all people was appointed as coach for last year but I believe he's in another RU job now so I'm not sure if he'll carry on his role with Lebanon this year.

 

Checks is still planning on coaching the Cedars - combining his job there with the Argentina job in yawnion.

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18 minutes ago, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

Have the mid season International fixtures been confirmed?

Hopefully sky sports pick them up in the UK.

The fact that these fixtures weren’t sorted and planned out before the season makes me doubtful that they’ll actually go ahead but I’d love to be proven wrong.

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48 minutes ago, Sir Kevin Sinfield said:

Have the mid season International fixtures been confirmed?

Hopefully sky sports pick them up in the UK.

I don't know about confirmed, Sinny. The first I heard about the other games was on here.

I wouldn't hold my breath on Sky even being aware that the games are on. I remember emailing them a few years ago about Tonga v Samoa and they hadn't a clue that the game was on. It ended up being put behind the red button and clashed with IE v Oz in yawnion.

Somebody at the NRL should be onto Sky as soon as the games are confirmed. If they do show them, my bet will be that they'll be last minute additions to the TV schedule in the days leading up to the games.

Reality is SKY largely use RL as filler and the NRL doesn't place much importance in UK and IE television market. As long as they make a killing down under, they'll be happy.

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So there is a fair few guys that have nominated Australia already but that doesn't mean they will get picked.

Tino Fa'asumaleaui, Payne Haas, Brian To'o, (Aus) with Dylan Brown nominating for NZ. This was before Parish was going to step down so we will see if that has any impact. To'o has already said he is willing to play for Samoa if he doesn't get picked for Australia which is a reflection of where our game is at, at the moment. Pacific is attractive, but not that attractive. Should there ever be a time when all the top nations are getting paid and play the same amount of money and games Id and there is no advantage to playing with a power house like Australia or NZ Id like to see commitment to a national team go from 1 year as it is at the moment to a international cycle to slow down the nation hoping.

 

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3 hours ago, B rad said:

So there is a fair few guys that have nominated Australia already but that doesn't mean they will get picked.

Tino Fa'asumaleaui, Payne Haas, Brian To'o, (Aus) with Dylan Brown nominating for NZ. This was before Parish was going to step down so we will see if that has any impact. To'o has already said he is willing to play for Samoa if he doesn't get picked for Australia which is a reflection of where our game is at, at the moment. Pacific is attractive, but not that attractive. Should there ever be a time when all the top nations are getting paid and play the same amount of money and games Id and there is no advantage to playing with a power house like Australia or NZ Id like to see commitment to a national team go from 1 year as it is at the moment to a international cycle to slow down the nation hoping.

 

Of those 3 holding their hands up for Australia, you would imagine that Fa'asuamaleaui is the one who is least likely to be selected.  Haas is probably a lock in if his off field behaviour holds up, To'o would get a wing spot as he is quality and wing is not a particularly competitive spot for the Kangaroos now.  

Fa'asuamaleaui is a very good player but as a club 13 he is looking at Yeo, Murray, Radley and Jake Trbojevic as competition.  He may be considered as a front row option though.

I hope we see all of them here in the Autumn in one team or another. 

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"The history of the world is the history of the triumph of the heartless over the mindless." — Sir Humphrey Appleby.

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  • 2 weeks later...

And Parish now stays. He's more lives than a cat. They've even increased their coaching brains trust with the addition of Richard Agar as an assistant. All good news for England if nothing else:

However, the Toa Samoa board has finalised its coaching staff for this year’s internationals and confirmed Parish will remain in the role. His assistants will be Andrew Webster and Richard Agar, joining Geoff Toovey as members of the brains trust.

NRL 2022: Andrew Johns and Matthew Johns out of Samoa coaching roles, Matt Parish to remain (smh.com.au)

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22 minutes ago, Damien said:

His assistants will be Andrew Webster and Richard Agar, joining Geoff Toovey as members of the brains trust.

I could make a cheap joke there but I’m better than that 

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1 hour ago, Damien said:

And Parish now stays. He's more lives than a cat. They've even increased their coaching brains trust with the addition of Richard Agar as an assistant. All good news for England if nothing else:

However, the Toa Samoa board has finalised its coaching staff for this year’s internationals and confirmed Parish will remain in the role. His assistants will be Andrew Webster and Richard Agar, joining Geoff Toovey as members of the brains trust.

NRL 2022: Andrew Johns and Matthew Johns out of Samoa coaching roles, Matt Parish to remain (smh.com.au)

Why does it seem their only 2 options were to keep Parish or go with the Johns brothers. Surely there’d be plenty of applicants to take on the Samoa job part time in a World Cup year.

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Surprised Parish keeps his job. Addition of Webster and Pritchard seem very sensible, Webster's Penrith connection is valuable as there could well be 7 Panthers in the WC 17 while Pritchard is a well respected former captain. Both will help with getting their best talent to commit.

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