Posts Tagged ‘Darius Boyd’

Darius, we love you; now answer the question!

Take yourself back to 2009. What a year in rugby league that one was.

Queensland won the State of Origin. Hazem El Masri broke Andrew Johns’ long standing point scoring record. Jarryd Hayne had that magical run, bringing Parramatta to the finals, but more importantly stretched journalists to the very end of their powers of rhyme, spawning such notable and long-lasting nicknames like ‘Hayne Drain,’ ‘Hayne Spain’ and ‘Hayne Citizen Kane.’ Melbourne won the premiership, but were exposed as dirty cheats so had it taken away, like candy from a baby.

But there was one thing about that year of football that really wasn’t great. Was it worse than Melbourne cheating the salary cap? Well, if you compiled videos of both incidents and crammed it into 42 seconds, this one would certainly be more painful.

After another shocker of a press conference from Darius Boyd two days ago, I thought I should speak on behalf of people much more qualified than myself about how Darius can improve his relationship with the media.

First of all, let me say to you Darius that more goes unsaid than said in every single article about rugby league. Here’s some of what goes unsaid too often.

“Darius, you’re an excellent football player. You’re better than I’ll ever be. You are at the pointy end of a very high level competition and you’ve worked exceptionally hard to be there. Well done.

Well done, too, on your absurd pace, your calmness under pressure and your ability to make the big plays at the right moment in every single game of every week. We applaud you, and your talent, your team and the rest of the players around you. You’re all great footballers.”

That is never said in a rugby league article. It’s taken for granted that you are an excellent footballer, Darius, and maybe we should tell you more often how good you really are.

So you should know, then, that all criticism directed at you is only directed at you in the context of you being an amazingly talented, hard-working, successful player. The paradigm is so different to, say, fourth grade Saturday afternoon footy, in that you get paid what you do to be in the papers, and play the big games in front of the cameras and score spectacular tries.

Know that we don’t hate you when we criticise. We talk about you in a context that we all dreamed of being inside as kids. But we don’t happen to have a tenth of a sixteenth of your skill, so we write about it instead.

First we admire. Then we evaluate. Then we write, but we only write about the second bit, because if we always wrote about how much we admired, it would be awfully boring to read every day.

Media can be scary. They can write nasty things about you. They have terrifying, limited, ethically bound power. But as Gordon Tallis said on Matty Johns’ show, don’t treat them like the contemptuous, blood-sucking parasite you think they are, treat them like a big megaphone booming out to your legion of fans.

For if it wasn’t for the journalists, your fans wouldn’t get to hear what you have to say on TV or read what you have to say in the paper. They’re your mouthpiece. Sure, the mouthpiece might play Chinese whispers with what you say, but they’re still your link to the fans. If you like your fans, you should at least pretend to not hate journalists during a press conference.

And when you don’t answer questions in a press conference, whether it’s because your nervous, tired, you hate the journalists, or whatever, it doesn’t look good. People don’t see it like you’re making a point.

They just think you’re being a douche.

That’s not to say you are a douche, indeed Gordon Tallis on the very same show said that you weren’t; and who am I to disagree with Gordy having never met you myself?

But it would certainly serve your self interest to just answer the question. Suck up whatever your beef is and do it.

Because we do love you. We just don’t tell you often enough.

Vested interests XIII

Are you a staunch Tigers man? Or perhaps you like the Panthers? Or the Doggies? Whatever the case, the fans have been voicing their vested interests over the past couple of weeks about who should be in the New South Wales Origin team. Many of the suggestions have been as laughable as combining chocolate with chilli.

Here, I intend to name a XIII of players who should not play for NSW, possibly ever, but have been touted as possibilities by guys who love their club a little too much.

Note: I’m not saying any of the below players are bad, but origin? I think not.

Fullback – Tim Moltzen

After his performance against the Broncos a few weeks back I was surprised he was even in the running to be on the Wests Tigers contracted players list. I was even more surprised when a Tigers fan threw his name in the ring to be NSW fullback in a forum situation. Maybe if NSW wanted a fullback who didn’t take ownership of high balls and relished in making basic errors, Moltzen would be your guy.

Winger the first – Andrew Everingham

You’d have to be more than a passionate Bunny supporter to put this guy in sky blue; you’d have to have Russell Crowe tattoos, Holmes-a-Court shaped shlong piercings and an addiction of some sort (I don’t discriminate). His name may sound like ET’s, but he ain’t ET. One does not simply play origin in one’s first year of NRL. Sam Thaiday might not be Sauron, but don’t think he would miss Everingham the first time he took it up. He has an eye for puny wingers who don’t know what time it is.

It’s origin football, people!

Winger the second – Andrew Ettinghausen

Apparently this guy, as publicity for his new show coming out, has come out of origin retirement. He’d probably still do better than Everingham, even at 108 years old. Experience counts for a lot, ladies tell me.

Also, he’s played origin football before, and knows what origin football is about. He and Gus Gould could fucking tell you about it too.

Centre – Ben Pomeroy

A specialist line-breaker and bike-pant-wearer at the Sharks, what harm could possibly come in exposing old lopey-Pomeroy to the origin arena? The only harm I could think of is that he will be hopelessly caught out in defense, time and time again. He will resemble less a turnstile and more an empty space as the Queensland centre rolls past him on his way to he and his winger scoring three tries each; the winger scoring three only because Hodges was feeling generous and a little embarrassed for Pomeroy, so he tried unsuccessfully to shift some of the blame onto his winger. But we all know the winger wasn’t to blame.

Another Centre – Beau Scott

I love his attitude in defense! He is tough as they come and the first guy I would have next to me in the trenches were I ever engaged in war. Unfortunately there are no trenches on a football field, and centres are supposed to be able to attack. The fact that he runs as if he were on a treadmill makes me want NSW to pick him, just so I can laugh while Inglis orders a coffee, waits for it, eats a piece of banana bread, has a cigar, then decides to tackle Beau just as he reaches the gain line.

Also, he probably wouldn’t get on well with Tim Moltzen, being a staunch Dragons man. Cough.

Five Eighth – Jarry Mullen

As I recall, Jarry didn’t do too well on his origin debut. Despite everyone from Newcastle saying he was a better, drug free version of Andrew Johns, he didn’t play that way. What we unveiled was a drug free version of Andrew Johns who played nothing like Andrew Johns and had an allergy to the number 7 shirt. The fact that he has youth on his side doesn’t help either, with no one under thirty likely to get a run while Ricky Stuart attempts to build an arthritic spine for the future.

Note # Jarry spelled Jarry on purpose. Jarry’s a big fan of this blog. #

Halfback – Sam Williams

I saw a comment on Fox Sports that said the decision to pick Sam Williams was “easy.” I agree. He wasn’t even playing the starting XIII for the Raiders while McCrone and Campese were there. He didn’t get picked for City Country, but McCrone did. He has played about two games for the Raiders so far this year, and is only in his second year of NRL, and has not really done that much of note when he has played. Easy to pick though.

Props – Nothin’ but respect

Not being a fat man myself, I have a lot of respect for the big boppers of the NRL, mostly due to the fact that they could sit on me while I sleep and I wouldn’t wake up the next morning. I think it was Wayne Bennett who said that no prop in the NRL should be paid more than $350,000 (I do believe that comment came after Justin Poore got sold to the Eels for around $400,000. Bargain). Well let me be the first to say that any prop could play origin and not be out of place. Even you, George Rose.

Hooker – Mitch Rein

I know you like the Dragons, Dragons fan. Yes… yes, I know! You’ve said it ten times already. I realise you like the look of your players, and the way they scrub up in their fancy ‘Red V,’ whatever that means. Yes. Yes. I know. Just hang on a minute, you’re going to give yourself a contusion. But let me just say this. Mitch Rein may be playing well, and he may be fast, strong, and a tough-as-nails defender, but I will put my house on the fact that he will not play State of Origin this year or next. And no, Ben Hornby should not be NSW captain.

Back Row –

Unfortunately, I find it extremely difficult to make a joke about the ridiculous number of talented second-rowers at NSW’s disposal. As a Queensland fan, I’m just… jealous. Last year they had so many second-rowers that they picked a bunch of them as props and they won the game! Laughably people then considered this the end of  the big bopper and Queensland dominance. That was until origin three, where Matt Scott and Petero Civoniceva kept NSW pinned in their half for the first thirty minutes of the fixture. There was no coming back from that, no matter how many second-rowers NSW picked. I have, though, compiled a list of what I would think would be a pretty handy origin side made up entirely of eligible NSW second-rowers.

1. Tariq Sims  2. Blake Ayshford 3. Ben Creagh 4. Ryan Hoffman 5. Tony Williams  6. Feleti Mateo 7. Luke Lewis 8. Paul Gallen 9. Ryan Hinchcliffe 10. Nathan Hindmarsh 11. Anthony Watmough 12. Tom Leahroyd Lars 13. Glenn Stewart

I would put that team on the park and back it to do pretty well. Sure I took a few liberties, but who hasn’t in this prostitute infested world of ours?

Also, how good would Tariq Sims be at fullback?

Stand, spray and deliver.

Critiques from the arm chair