WE?RE smack bang in the middle of season 2006, and I thought I?d take the opportunity this week to draw up a mid-season report card. Let?s now take a look at how your team is faring currently, and just how they might finish up come September and October.
NEWCASTLE have signed five-eighth Kurt Gidley for another three seasons, keeping the 24-year-old at the NRL club until the end of 2009.
PARRAMATTA halfback Jeremy Smith has been suspended for four NRL matches after entering an early guilty plea to a grade five contrary conduct charge. The charge resulted from an incident in the Eels' loss to St George Illawarra last Friday, where Smith allegedly pushed referee Sean Hampstead.
MELBOURNE star Greg Inglis will miss the second State of Origin match after being ruled out with stress fractures in his back. Inglis was yesterday selected on the wing for Queensland when it attempts to level the series at Suncorp Stadium on Wednesday week.But his NRL club says he will be unavailable and will not be able to play for 2-4 weeks.Steve Clark has been appointed as referee for the second State of Origin match between NSW and Queensland at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane next Wednesday.Clark replaces fellow whistleblower Sean Hampstead, who controlled the opening game of the series. Hampstead will be the stand-by referee for the game. Rod Lawrence and Russell Turner have been appointed as touch judges, with Graeme West the video referee.It will be Clarke's fourth time in control of an Origin match.
THE New Zealand Warriors have sacked promising NRL winger Misi Taulapapa for alcohol-related breaches of club discipline to "send a message" to other players.The Warriors on Sunday dropped Taulapapa, 24, from the team for its match against league leaders the Brisbane Broncos over his latest indiscretion. Warriors chief executive Wayne Scurrah says an incident over the weekend involved alcohol and Taulapapa's contract has been ended because had previously been given three official warnings after similar breaches.Taulapapa has played five first-grade games since debuting against South Sydney in April.
NSW coach Graham Murray believes Queensland will be a more formidable opponent following the addition of Tonie Carroll and Chris Flannery to the side which lost the Origin series opener.
HULL have agreed a two-year deal with North Queensland's Matt Sing, who will join the Super League club for next season.
THE Sydney Roosters have until midday today to decide how they will plea after three of their players were charged by the NRL match review committee yesterday.
THE New Zealand Residents selectors, Tawera Nikau, Trevor McLeod and Phil Prescott in conjunction with Coach, David Lomax, have announced the NZ Residents team to participate in the Trans-Tasman Quadrangular Tournament, involving New South Wales Country, Queensland Country and The Jim Beam Cup Selection to be held in Rotorua from the 21 June through to the 1 July 2006.The selected team is as follows:Paletasala ALE Auckland LionsJunior AURU Waicoa Bay StallionsShane BEYERS (Vice-Captain) Canterbury BullsSteve BUCKINGHAM (Captain) Auckland LionsSala FA'ALOGO Auckland LionsSonny FA'I Counties Manukau JetzSinave FAITALE Tamaki LeopardsDavid FISI'IAHI Auckland LionsWilliam HETA Tamaki LeopardsHayden KARENA Waicoa Bay StallionsCorey LAWRIE Canterbury BullsWayne McDADE Auckland LionsJulian O'NEILL Auckland LionsPeter PRIME Waicoa Bay StallionsTui SAMOA Harbour LeagueLusi SIONE Canterbury BullsMiguel START Auckland LionsRicky THORBY Central FalconsGeorge TUAKURA Tamaki LeopardsHenry TURUA Waitakere RangersCooper VUNA Tamaki LeopardsKelvin WRIGHT Auckland LionsCoach: David LOMAXAsst Coach: Sam PANAPAManager: Nigel RATTRAYTrainer: Scott COTTIERPhysio: Mila MASIASOMUA
WEEK 10 of New Zealand's Bartercard Cup once again full of exciting action for the supporters.The Jetz fought back hard from a 14-0 deficit to take the victory over the Leopards in an exciting game at Ericsson Stadium on Sunday afternoon.Another interesting battle saw the Stallions hold out the Falcons in Tokoroa. Both sides trying to hold onto their Top 6 placings.Once again Canterbury at home always very strong, and this time the Orcas turn to be on the end of a hiding.The table now with the Lions still in top spot, with the Bulls hot on their heels only 2 points shy.Sunday 4 June:Tamaki Leopards vs Counties Manukau Jetz Ericsson Stadium, Auckland(C/R To Warriors vs Broncos) Counties Manukau Jetz 22Tries: L. Faleono, J. Matai, T. Tuifelasai, R. HifoGoals: J. Matai (3) Tamaki Leopards 14 Tries: C. Vuna, T. LeaunoaGoals: M. Ashford (3) Halftime Score: 8 - 0 To Tamaki LeopardsWaicoa Bay Stallions vs Central Falcons Tokoroa Domain, TokoroaWaicoa Bay Stallions 26Tries: A. Grant, T. Davis, P. Prime, S. Te Kuru (2)Goals: H. Karena (3)Central Falcons 24Tries: T. Cahill, H. Robson, H. Healey, R. PackerGoals: H. Robson (4) Halftime Score: 14 - 12 To Waicoa Bay StallionsCanterbury Bulls vs Wellington Orcas Rugby League Park, Christchurch Canterbury Bulls 50Tries: L. Sione, S. Hurrell, D. Aitken, S. Beyers, B. Milner (2), C. Lawrie (3)Goals: S. Hurrell (7)Wellington Orcas 14Tries: L. Boyd, T. PeleniseGoals: M. Fitzgerald (1), L. Boyd (2) Halftime Score: 16 - 8 To Canterbury Bulls
SAM Rapira may be the youngest member of the Wai-Coa-Bay Stallions rugby league squad but he is already making big impressions.
RUBEN Wiki looks likely to skipper the Kiwis in the end of season Tri-Nations series against the Kangaroos and Great Britain.
CANBERRA is facing an international tug-of-war for the services of their forward leader Ruben Wiki.
THE Sydney Roosters and the National Rugby league on Tuesday dismissed a rumour the league leaders were under salary cap investigation as betting agencies suspended gambling on the 2004 season wooden spoon.
NSW Origin prop Jason Ryles has accepted a reduced contract to extend his relationship with the Dragons a further three years, agreeing to terms today until the end of 2007.