NIGHTMARE. That single word that sums up the Origin debut of Justin Hodges. His selection for game two, by virtue of Clinton Schifcofske?s wooden performance in the opening game of the 2002 series, was seen another shrewd investment in the Maroons myth. Unfortunately for Queensland selectors, the leap of faith shown by selecting Hodges was not repaid in kind. Two risky and inexact in-goal passes from the debutant resulted in NSW tries.
FOREWORD: I was lucky enough to have a conversation with Bulldogs teenage superstar, Sonny Bill Williams, during the infamous Coffs Harbour investigations, and a few months after the Director of Public Prosecutions, Nicholas Cowdery Q.C, stated that there was insufficient evidence to charge any of the players. This article has been designed to show the public the mixed emotions that were felt by Sonny Bill Williams and his team-mates during the toughest time as his career.
RUGBY League is a game of many traditions. The Dragon?s Red V. The JJ Giltinan Shield. The Haka before every Anzac Test. These elements of our game have stood the test of time. The Dragons have undergone major restructure with Illawarra. Yet the Red V continues to run out at Kogarah. The JJ Giltinan Shield continues to grace the foyer of the Minor Premiers, and our friends from across the ditch still dance their way into battle.
IT?S time to get out the calculators and do the sums, as the Tigers (24 Pts, -15), the Raiders (24 Pts -99), the Sharks (24 Pts -101), the Eels (22 Pts -71), and the Knights (22 Pts -111) take part in the Race for 8th in Round 26.
ANOTHER major blow for the Kiwis league team ahead of next month's Tri Nations series in the UK.
TOTAL RL.com Rugby League Conference Finals Sunday 5th September (Woollams, St Albans)
OTAHUHU Ellerslie are set to take on North Harbour Tigers in the first game of the weekend on Saturday afternoon. The loser will be eliminated from the 2004 competition with the winner going on the face either Mt Albert Lions or Marist Richmond Brothers next weekend.
NZRL chairman Selwyn Pearson has rubbished suggestions that the en-mass defections from the Kiwis for the upcoming tri-series against Australia and Great Britain resulted from Daniel Anderson as coach.
STEELE Retchless will head back to his hometown Brisbane at the end of this season after playing 202 games for London Broncos over a seven-year period.
THE Penrith Panthers have come away convincing winners over the Brisbane Broncos, defeating the visitors 46-20 in front of a huge crowd at Penrith Stadium tonight.
TELSTRA PREMIERSHIP: Round 26
BRISBANE'S Raging Bull Gorden Tallis has always taken his mum's advice.
ST.GEORGE-ILLAWARRA CEO Peter Doust has stated that Aussie Stadium is not relevant to the St.George-Illawarra supporter base.
Doust made the remark in the Sydney Morning Herald when questioned on whether Aussie Stadium was considered as a venue for a possible Dragons' home final.
THIS Sunday?s final round NRL clash between the Storm and the Sea Eagles will see Melbourne assistant coach Peter Sharp make his first trip to Brookvale Oval since finishing his tenure as Manly head coach at the end of last season.
JUNIOR Langi gets a call up into the Eels top side this week with Ronald Prince out with injury and Jamie Lyon on indefinite leave. Matt Petersen, who has been playing centre, will move to the wing to make way for Langi who preformed well in his only outing in the NRL so far this season against Newcastle 2 weeks ago. Langi will have the tough job of marking Adam Macdougall who is in some of the best form of his career and could be a bolter for the Anzac test team.
Langi played first grade at the Melbourne Storm at Centre, Wing and Fullback and has plenty of talent. If he can keep ?Mad-dog? quiet it could produce a win for the Eels who are 2-2 so far in 2004.