Monday, November 13, 2006

Australian Rugby, take a closer look at thee

A treat for you all this week...a special guest rant by an outraged correspondent.


The time has come for Australian Rugby to have a long hard look at itself. Being pushed around by the All Blacks and South Africans is one thing, but when Italy start to smash our scrum to smithereens, something is drastically wrong.

In fact, I can’t remember the last time any scrum with Australia went forward, and certainly not since the time of Enrique ‘Topo’ Rodriguez.

What is being done to correct it? We bring in heavier guys and we still go backwards! Here’s something we should think about, why don’t we pick the best scrummagers in the country, rather than guys who can’t pack down successfully against Ballarat’s U/10b team.

No side can get anything going if the forwards don’t go forward. And this spring tour is the perfect example.

George Gregan has done more for his selection prospects by NOT going on the tour. The lack of direction without him is ridiculous. Granted he isn’t a Ken Catchpole or Nick Farr-Jones, but he is the best we’ve got at the moment.

Now, old ‘Knuckles’ Connolly, what is going on with the experimentation in the backline? I can understand Giteau to halfback with no Gregan, but surely you could tell Rogers at 5/8th didn’t work against Wales! Yet we have one of the top two number 10’s in the world standing at inside centre getting wasted.

The first time Larkham went to first 5/8th on the weekend, he put Rogers through a huge gap, maybe that should have rung alarms bells to change it, but no, lets stick with it.

I call on Gary ‘Storky’ Flowers to put an end to this debacle and have the best XV players in their position playing for Australia, and screw how many players come from which state policy, that appears to be happening now.

Finally, how can we waste either George Smith or Phil Waugh on the bench, when Rocky Elsom is only good to give away penalties and get sin-binned, and Wycliff Palu seems to be a gentle giant! We have former hard-men like Tony Miller et al turning in their graves.

Test matches like the last two weeks cannot continue, it’s the best advertisement Rugby League ever had.


My limited rugby mind agrees.

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