Sunday, August 05, 2018

Sporting shorts - No 22

Another great weekend of football, as we get closer to the end of the season the games just seem to get better. Listening to interviews with the NRL and AFL CEOs it seems clear to me that Rugby League is in better hands. Gil’s response to Daisy Pearce’s concerns about reducing the length of the Women’s competition was ridiculous. To me, the competition should feature every team playing each other once then the top four playing each other in semi finals. His comparison with the World Cup made no sense to me at all. Not to mention the crazy idea that the game is in trouble and rules need to be played with. But more on that later.

On the other hand, the way Todd Greenberg spoke about scheduling and referees showed he was at least willing to listen to feedback.


  • Well the Swans surprised me with a close and hard fought win against Collingwood. The game was special as it was the first time Alex Johnson played since the 2012 Grand Final. Massive credit to the Magpies, they have an extensive injury list with another player going down during the game. 
  • The round is the first in VFL/AFL history to have five games decided by less than a goal. THe whole round’s average will be skewed by the three blowouts in Sunday’s games.
  • It’s a shame the Showdown will be remembered for the match winning ‘goal’ kicked by Josh Jenkins rather than the awesome contest. Jenkins will be known as the AFL’s Adam Gilchrist, after he acknowledged he though the ball hit the post. The goal was awarded via the Video review system. Honestly, I’m not a fan of the review system, but if it’s going to stay I think they need to rethink how it works. Each week we seem to be talking about a contentious decision. 
  • Back to the on field action, the weekend showed how tight the top eight is, Geelong pushed Richmond all the way but due to the loss finish the weekend outside the eight. Melbourne are in the top four after smashing the Suns. 
  • Loved how Brisbane’s coach got alongside his player who sprayed his final kick on the siren.
  • Really looking forward to the Hawthorn - Geelong game next weekend, quite possibly the loser of this game will miss out on the finals. 
  • Another great round and the Warriors surprised me by beating the Dragons in Wollongong. It means the season is still alive. On the other hand, the Dragons who were looking like premiers in April, had a costly loss.
  • At the top end of the table, Souths are showing themselves to be a genuine chance to win the competition. They were superb against Melbourne, and next Friday’s game against the Roosters could well be a Grand Final preview. 
  • The other big loser this weekend was Cronulla. With the Dragons loss the Sharks could have broken into the top four with a win.
  • At the other end of the table, it’s sad that Thurston, one of the legends of the game, may finish his career with a Wooden spoon. 
  • Was really saddened to read about Matt Cechin’s retirement. I always thought he was one of the better referees. Just so disappointing that many people threatened not only his life, but the life of his family after they weren’t happy with one of his decisions. 
Super Rugby
  • Another video of Scott Robinson breakdancing suggests that the Crusaders won their ninth Super Rugby title, defending their crown. Sad for the Lions, who have been in three straight Finals and have lost them all. 
  • I think the Rugby Championship is going to be tighter than people think. 
Onto Cricket. The first test between England and India was awesome. Kohli just failing to win the game for India off his own bat. England winning a close match by 31 runs. 

Next weekend sees the start of the English soccer season. For me, I think it’s hard to go past Manchester City as winners. It will be interesting to see how the World Cup impacts the beginning of the competition. I’ll also tip Liverpool to do really well this year. 

Still on Football, to me the most impressive Australian sports team is the Matildas. While they didn’t end up winning the Tournament of Nations they didn’t lose a game, and are certainly a massive chance to win next years World Cup. In Samantha Kerr they have they best player in the world. 

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