This ANZAC Day we're honoured to share this 2015 piece by Andrew Ferguson.
Honouring Stan Carpenter...
5 hours ago
As I was walking down the hallway towards the locker room I feel?sad? Nope that?s not it, frustrated? A little bit?desperation? That?s it! Desperation. I feel desperate.
A win would be lovely.
The Dirty Reds F7?s came into the NRL in 2005 with high hopes and to be honest a little bit of hype. We had done pretty well in the pre-season trials. I remember reading an article in the Sunday Telegraph saying how we were the next big things. A group of young kids, with an idea and plenty of moxy. It?s amazing how far you can fall when you have never actually climbed the ladder.
I?m not sure what has gone wrong. We haven?t really had any injuries; we have always fielded a full strength squad. We have the ingredients that make up a champion team. We have the inspirational leader, the amazing clubmen that provoke strong feelings of mate ship and loyalty. We have the young kids that just want to make their mark. But for some unknown reason this just can?t translate to a win.
This game is a game of inches. This whole season has been a game of inches. We have done a pretty sharp job but can?t seem to fall over the line.
The only game we have won this season was due to the fact that rhinos could not field a full strength squad? There were rumors as to why this was the case but I am not one to talk out school. Round 3 came down to the wire. 3 points?3 measly points were the difference. It was a similar case in round 5 only worse. 2 points. I?m sick of being so close yet so far.
The smell coming from inside the locker room wasn?t exactly anything to write home about. As I swing the doors open the men of the Dirty Reds momentarily look up and acknowledge my arrival. We all have our pre game rituals. CWB was silent in his Zen like pose. After watching him for the last few matches I could confidently say he was in the mantis pose. He was humming what sounded like ?To be with you? by Mr Big. Cake or Death was talking to himself in the mirror again. I think it?s the Al Pacino ?Any Given Sunday? speech. I?ll stop and eavesdrop for a while. I need a bit of inspiration. The Joey Show and Brandell starting smacking the absolute crap out of each other. Someone mentioned what Madunit (the resident sledger from the opposition) had said about Brandell?s mother. He?s angry but takes a seat?slightly exhausted by the psych up.
My own ritual is simplistic but effective. I sit down, pop two no doze and swallow it down with a red bull. Then I chuck on the headphones and get angry listening to some heavy metal. (Note: Everyone thinks its heavy metal; makes me seem like a complete bad arse chick. In reality?I?m bopping along to Robbie Williams, I?m such a girly girl). I look over and notice Mr C, PJ and Skeptic sitting down quietly, boots laced, ready to take the field at a moments notice.
We?re a great team.
Five minutes to kick off. Chris calls us all in to the huddle. I look around at our impressive team. The young, the old, the brains and the muscle. We are dressed, pumped, strapped, rubbed down (some more than most I might add) and ready to fire. We huddle up and CWB delivers what I believe to be his most inspirational speech yet.
?Have we forgotten what it feels like to win?
Have we lost the will to want to win?
I?ll tell ya something Reds, I haven?t!
I live to lead you lot onto the field every week and it?s killing me to come back in here, looking at you, bloodied and broken. A pack of losers.
Damn it, don?t you miss winning!?!
We?re not losing today.
Today we are winners. Not just because we have the talent but also because we have earned it. We have put in the hours, the sweat, and the tears.
Today, were going to bring it home?
And as I run down the tunnel, I believe him. I truly think that this is our day.
This is our win.
A win just wouldn?t be lovely?it?s everything.
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