This ANZAC Day we're honoured to share this 2015 piece by Andrew Ferguson.
Honouring Stan Carpenter...
2 days ago
I have every sympathy for Blues fans who are unhappy that the Blues only played one game in Sydney this year.
Every sympathy for the fans - but zero sympathy and support for for NSWRL officials who now want two origin games in Sydney next year!
The CEO of the NSWRL cannot possibly be serious.
Until the advent of the ARLC, the origin series was run by the ARL, then controlled by the NSWRL and the QRL. The NSWRL always had the numbers.
The decision to play one of the Blues home games in Melbourne this year was made with the full agreement of the NSWRL. It simply would not have happened without it.
If the NSWRL wants to give up Sydney games that is its call.
But in calling for two games in Sydney next year the NSWRL is basically admitting it got it very wrong this year!
The proposal has to be dismissed out of hand.
The real worry is not that silly idea....it is the growing evidence the ARLC might be about to take the dollars on offer from the Victorian Government and lock in one Origin game each year in Melbourne.
The price? Somewhere between $10 million and $12 million over five years.
That represents around 1 per cent of what the new television deal should provide.
Surely the ARLC can find sponsors in NSW and Qld who would embrace Origin only played in the origin states?
And surely it does not want to put at risk the tremendous success State of Origin is - and the contribution it makes where it counts.....in Queensland and New South Wales?
Lets ensure Origin has a level playing field....to maintain its integrity.
And a level playing field means alternating the "third" Origin game between the Origin states!
Over to your Mr Grant......