Off the Wall

The Four National final is being held at Suncorp Stadium tomorrow night - but the level of interest in Brisbane is underwhelming.

I cannot recall one person asking me about the game this week. Media coverage has been reasonable, but more about which haka, and whether this is Darren Lockyer's final Brisbane test match.

And the answer to that question seems to be his retirement is scheduled for some time post 2015. (He does look in danger of being the John Howard of rugby league when it comes to retirement).

But the simple truth is that crowds here for the Four Nations have been poor, and television ratings arguably worse.

A long season ends mercifully on Saturday night - but about six weeks too late!

For the players it will be even worse in 2011 - the Four Nations will be held in the UK, and instead of PNG, we will have Wales. Wales?

The season might end but a couple of issues will remain alive and well in the coming weeks.

The federal government's new anti-siphoning policy is due to be announced any day. It will have a vital impact on the next TV rights agreements for the AFL and the NRL.

And the long promised and awaited Independent Commission may finally be set up in the next month.

I agree with the great Ron Coote that there is too much secrecy surrounding the selection of the commission members.

One of its primary goals must surely be transparency and accountability. In that regard the process has been found wanting.

The off season, and especially the last couple of weeks, has not been the best for the game.

I hope tomorrow night's match might send the season off in a better way.

But even if it does it won't detract from the fact this 2010 season has dragged on far too long - with fans being almost as worn out as players!

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