rlw-september-2016

BONDI BEAT: September 2016

By STEVE MASCORD BECAUSE next year’s World Cup is in Australia, expect officials to pull out all the stops to have as many NRL stars sprinked across the teams as possible. The new CEO of the tournament, Andrew Hill, has been working on eligibility rules for years and walking a diplomatic tightrope in his dual roles as RLIF secretary and NRL head of integration. In one ear, he’s had NSW and Queensland officials stridently refusing to budge on their oft-heard refrain ‘you must be Australian to play Origin’ which translates to “son, if you play for that country we won’t pick you’. Then there’s the NRL’s own investment in the South Pacific, which would be far more useful if those countries had their best teams on the pitch. And finally, there’s been his empathy for the objectives of the RLIF and the countries frustrated by the likes of Wayne Bennett barring Anthony Milford from representing Samoa with no reason given. Now Hill can be a little more unequivocal – and it wills start with new eligibility rules at the end of the year. Origin players will hopefully be permitted to represent tier two nations without changing their country of election. (These changes don’t help the likes of, say, Scotland for this year). And Bondi Beat expects Hill to go door to door, if necessary, to make sure as many of the world’s best players as possible are on show next October and November. The question is whether a Tongan side full of players born in south Auckland, Penrith and Logan City – to use an example – is a threat to England’s chances. It probably is. Full strength Samoa, PNG, Tongan and Fiji teams on hard grounds during an Australasian spring will present Wayne Bennett with plenty of headaches. One suspects another big part of Hill’s role will be ease the concerns of his colleagues in Fitzrovia and Red Hall. . LAST month we reported for you how RLWC chief executive Michael Brown was forced to resign after leaving an abusive voicemail for Penrith CEO Corey Payne. Michael was browned off that Payne – the youngest chief exec in the NRL, only a couple of years out of playing – had claimed Pepper Stadium was snubbed for a World Cup match when in fact they Panthers had demanded half a million dollars to host one. We thought that was typically rugby league. But the follow-up is even less likely to happen in any other sport, or indeed field of endeavour. Payne himself has fallen out with someone or another and is no longer involved in the game! The Panthers issued a media release referring only vaguely to “overseas business interests”. Maybe he’s buying Salford off Marwan. . IF there’re two things rugby league fans love to moan about, it’s refereeing and the disciplinary system. We can have match fixing and chaotic international eligibility rules and Gawd knows what else but if Johnny Appleseed got two weeks when he should have got four, the sky is falling in. Same goes for that knock-on Warren Whistleblower failed to detect. Here and Bond Beat Towers we try not to get caught up in such minutae. We really do. But in the last couple of weeks we have seen things get a tad daft. First, St George Illawarra’s Welshman-cum-New South Welshman Tyson Frizell is suspended for a week for brushing a referee as he walked past. I’d have no problem with that on its own. We don’t want to go the way of soccer in this area. But the way it is enforced Down Under is woefully inconsistent. Then, a couple of weeks later, Gold Coast Titan Ryan James breaks the jaw of Wests Tigers starlet James Tedesco. Sure, Tedesco was falling but James still copped a grade two careless high tackle charge. He chose to challenge, as is his right. After he is found guilty, he and his counsel take a deep breath and begin to gather up their paper when judiciary member Royce Ayliffe says “you’ve only been found guilty”. You mean we can still challenge the grading? Yes. And what do you know, James gets downgraded to one and doesn’t miss a match. You touch a referee as you walk past – one week. You break a star fullback’s jaw – none. I mean, really…. . ONE of the reservations many people have about the 2021 World Cup bid from America is that it does not come from the governing body, the USARL. But have you thought about how many national governing bodies in our game CAN afford to bid for the World Cup? Sure, South Africa made play for next year’s tournament but they used an external consultant with soccer experience all the way, Chris Botes, and basically just stood alongside him and nodded. Even Leagues with the right business acumen in their ranks probably wouldn’t be able to attract the requisite government support Steve Williams is the communications manager for the USARL. He recently told my Kiwi colleague: “We do not have any affiliation with Jason Moore. “We weren’t consulted about the actual bid. This was a bid submitted to the international federation. “We’re happy to partner with anybody who is willing to help promote rugby league in the USA. “That being said, … [Read More...]

RSS rugbyleague.com news

  • An error has occurred; the feed is probably down. Try again later.

FAR & WIDE: United States, Malta, Norway, Czech Republic, Jamaica, Canada, Wales, Germany, Thailand

By STEVE MASCORD JACKSONVILLE Axemen have been the outstanding team of American rugby league for the last decade but they were toppled in the USARL grand final a couple of weekends back. Northern Conference champions Philadelphia Fight took out the big one 42-20 at Boston University after eliminating the local club the previous week. The Fight finished the season undefeated. The US has announced a clash with Canada at Wilmington, Delaware on October 1. . FORMER Penrith and Celtic Crusaders star Jarrod Sammut has been named in Malta’s squad for the upcoming internationals against Ireland and Thailand. The Ireland game is in Bray on October 8, the Thailand match in Chiang Mai on October 28. The Knights will … [Read More...]

WLF TV!

Danko Jones - Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue

DANKO JONES – Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue

Album review: DANKO JONES – Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue By STEVE MASCORD THIS reviewer first saw Danko Jones opening for Hardcore Superstar in Manchester a decade ago. It was spellbinding, this swaggering braggart sweating all over the first 10 rows as he tore through impossibly catchy tales of road life. It was […]

Slash

SLASH, Thebarton Theatre, Adelaide, 2012

Live review: SLASH at Thebarton Theatre, August 28 2012 By STEVE MASCORD NEW Year’s Eve in Las Vegas. A Tuesday night in Adelaide. After just three songs, they are neck-and-neck. This reviewer did not set out to compare the Slash show at Thebarton Theatre last night to Guns N’Roses all-bells-and-whistles outing at the Hard Rock Hotel […]

Video: Eleven-year-old drummer nails “If You Want Blood (You’ve Got It)”

podcast artwork

WHITE LINE FEVER Podcast: Episode 88

https://itunes.apple.com/au/podcast/white-line-fever/id494213902?mt=2 https://itunes.apple.com/au/podcast/white-line-fever/id494213902?mt=2

LOUDMOUTH: January 2013

@Loudmouthcolumn DRUMMER Brian Tichy and guitarist Rob Caggiano have quit Whitesnake and Anthrax respectively on a seismic news day for hard rock and heavy metal. Tichy, who dislocated a shoulder in a mountain biking accident before New Years, wants to devote more time to his Something Unto Nothing (SUN) project with Sass Jordan – but […]

Screen Shot 2016-01-12 at 21.36.23

BONHAM: Mad Hatters Tea Party (1992)

By STEVE MASCORD FOR TWO members of a gold status rock band, Ian Hatton and Daniel MacMaster aren’t exactly megastars yet. Bonham guitarist Hatton sits across from me in a Sydney coffee shop with vocalist MacMaster. Unless you were a bigtime fan, you wouldn’t even recognise either of them in the street. When it comes […]

Hoad brothers

Kings Of The Sun Hit Back At Axl Rose, Search For New Singer

By STEVE MASCORD AFTER finally responding to Axl Rose 24 years after the Gunners front-man kicked him out of the Sydney Entertainment Centre, Kings Of The Sun drummer Cliff Hoad is looking for a new singer – to replace his brother. The Gold Coast rockers wrote themselves a little piece of Oz Rock history in […]

WLF TV: The Union – Luke Morley and Pete Shoulder interview

WCSsthsyd

World Club Series: SYDNEY ROOSTERS 38 ST HELENS 12 at DW Stadium

By STEVE MASCORD THE overall record of expanded World Club Championship matches was left at 60-8 in favour of the southern hemisphere by this 2016 opening night mismatch – but Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson launched an impassioned defence of the concept. The St Helens-Roosters clash at Langtree Park marked the 40th anniversary of the […]

rlw-september-2016

BONDI BEAT: September 2016

By STEVE MASCORD BECAUSE next year’s World Cup is in Australia, expect officials to pull out all the stops to have as many NRL stars sprinked across the teams as possible. The new CEO of the tournament, Andrew Hill, has been working on eligibility rules for years and walking a diplomatic tightrope in his dual […]

rlw-september-2016

BONDI BEAT: September 2016

By STEVE MASCORD BECAUSE next year’s World Cup is in Australia, expect officials to pull out all the stops to have as many NRL stars sprinked across the teams as possible. The new CEO of the tournament, Andrew Hill, has been working on eligibility rules for years and walking a diplomatic tightrope in his dual […]

Chris Sandow/wikipedia

Sandow Coy On NRL Return

By STEVE MASCORD CHRIS Sandow says the quality of his football will determine whether he returns to the NRL when his Warrington contract expires at the end of next year. The former Parramatta no.7 is one game away from a Challenge Cup final at Wembley after the Wolves’ 20-18 success on Friday night at Halliwell […]

Canterbury - Raelene Castle

Castle: Is Origin A Defacto Salary Cap?

By STEVE MASCORD  CANTERBURY chief executive Raelene Castle has blasted the 11th hour call-up of Josh Morris as “not very reasonable” and suggested split rounds now operate as a de facto salary cap. Nineteen-year-old Reimis Smith – with an entire match the day before under his belt – had to drive to Canberra to make […]

Far & Wide

Far & Wide: Papua New Guinea, Malta, World Cup, France, United States, Canada

By STEVE MASCORD CONGRATULATIONS to Lae Tigers, who took out Papua New Guinea’s Digicel Cup with a 14-8 win over Angmark Gurias at the weekend. The grand final was played in front of 15,000 rapturous fans at Sir John Guise Oval in Port Moresby at the weekend. On a much sadder note, a man has […]

Dorn, Luke

Australia Needs A Challenge Cup, Says Luke Dorn

By STEVE MASCORD OK, the NRL schedule is already so full that we didn’t even have a room for the All Stars game this season. But according to former Northern Eagles, Manly and Sydney Roosters utility back Luke Dorn, what it really needs is not more games, but more occasions. Standing in the players’ race […]

P1070312

Live Blog: SOUTH SYDNEY v SYDNEY ROOSTERS at ANZ Stadium

Fulltime: SOUTH SYDNEY 28 SYDNEY ROOSTERS 8 SOUTH Sydney overpowered their mortal enemies in a sizzling, incident-packed opening to the 2014 NRL season. Broadcaster Channel Nine reported the NRL launched an investigation while the match was still in progress into a tackle by Sydney Roosters’ Sonny Bill Williams and Aiden Guerra on Rabbitoh Ben Lowe, […]

smith-jeremy

The A-List: JEREMY SMITH (Newcastle & New Zealand)

By STEVE MASCORD IT’S the most obvious question to ask any retiring player, a clichéd query that invites a clichéd response, asked more out of obligation than anything else. And it’s usually saved until last: “what was your career highlight?”. Jeremy Smith, 36, has more than a few clichés from which to choose: the 2008 […]

Discord

DISCORD 2009: Edition 6

By STEVE MASCORD A COUPLE of weeks ago, British league legend Mike Stephenson let a pretty staggering development seep out onto the world, in the middle of his weekly magazine column. Stevo wrote in Rugby League Express that he knew of two Leeds businessmen who wanted to enter a team in the NRL. Not a […]

rlw-september-2016

BONDI BEAT: September 2016

By STEVE MASCORD BECAUSE next year’s World Cup is in Australia, expect officials to pull out all the stops to have as many NRL stars sprinked across the teams as possible. The new CEO of the tournament, Andrew Hill, has been working on eligibility rules for years and walking a diplomatic tightrope in his dual […]

New_NRL_logo

THE WRAP: NRL Finals Week One

By STEVE MASCORD MY furry colleague at Rugby League Week, the Mole, last week wrote that Greg Inglis was unlikely to play in the World Cup due to his ongoing knee problem. So when the finals series kicked off on Friday night, a couple of hours before kick-off between South Sydney and Melbourne at ANZ […]

RLW 19 2012

RLW MEDIA RELEASE: Issue 19

POORE OUT, RAP FOR JT AND MANGO, DEFIANT SEARLE, STUART LINKED TO DRAGONS, TARIQ DETERMINATION, AGENTS OF CHANGE PARRAMATTA prop Justin Poore is set to leave the club before the June 30 deadline, the Mole reports in today’s Rugby League Week. Canberra are favourites to sign Poore, who hasn’t really settled in since moving from […]

The Big Issue

THE BIG ISSUE: #60

By STEVE MASCORD EVERY year, around this time, a column like this appears that critiques the NRL finals format. This year, the concerns are not on the field. Sydney Roosters and South Sydney have been the best sides all year and they are facing opposition this weekend in the preliminary finals that most people expect […]

The Big Issue

THE BIG ISSUE: #60

By STEVE MASCORD EVERY year, around this time, a column like this appears that critiques the NRL finals format. This year, the concerns are not on the field. Sydney Roosters and South Sydney have been the best sides all year and they are facing opposition this weekend in the preliminary finals that most people expect […]

Far & Wide

FAR & WIDE: United States, Malta, Norway, Czech Republic, Jamaica, Canada, Wales, Germany, Thailand

By STEVE MASCORD JACKSONVILLE Axemen have been the outstanding team of American rugby league for the last decade but they were toppled in the USARL grand final a couple of weekends back. Northern Conference champions Philadelphia Fight took out the big one 42-20 at Boston University after eliminating the local club the previous week. The […]

therealsteavis - View my recent photos on Flickriver
Far & Wide

FAR & WIDE: United States, Malta, Norway, Czech Republic, Jamaica, Canada, Wales, Germany, Thailand

By STEVE MASCORD JACKSONVILLE Axemen have been the outstanding team of American rugby league for the last decade but they were toppled in the USARL grand final a couple of weekends back. Northern Conference champions Philadelphia Fight took out the big one 42-20 at Boston University after eliminating the local club the previous week. The […]

WCSsthsyd

World Club Series: SYDNEY ROOSTERS 38 ST HELENS 12 at DW Stadium

By STEVE MASCORD THE overall record of expanded World Club Championship matches was left at 60-8 in favour of the southern hemisphere by this 2016 opening night mismatch – but Sydney Roosters coach Trent Robinson launched an impassioned defence of the concept. The St Helens-Roosters clash at Langtree Park marked the 40th anniversary of the […]

Rugby_league_world_cup_logo

World Cup first quarter-final: NEW ZEALAND 40 SCOTLAND 4 at Headingley

By STEVE MASCORD SCOTLAND deliberately maximised the embarassment of rugby league officials by announcing as the most important game in their history kicked off that their funding had been completely withdrawn. New Zealand cruised through the World Cup quarter-final at Headingley as expected, winning 40-4 to set up a semi-final appearance with England with centre […]

NRLmelsgi

NRL round six: MELBOURNE 28 ST GEORGE ILLAWARRA 24 at AAMI Park

By STEVE MASCORD VICTORIAN junior Young Tonumapea called it dream-like experience while St George Illawarra coach Steve Price immediately started asking why his own nightmare was allowed to happen. Melbourne Storm produced the season’s greatest escape when Tonumaipea scored after the siren, with the ball swept from sideline to sideline, to beat the Dragons 28-24 […]

Melbourne - Craig Bellamy

Bellamy Says Some Aussie Clubs Still Don’t Take WCC Seriously

AS the World Club Challenge looks to return to Australia and then expand, victorious Melbourne coach Craig Bellamy last night admitted some NRL premiers still don’t take the concept seriously. Bellamy was speaking after the Storm held off Leeds 18-14 at Headingley, making them the first Australian club to win a WCC decider three times […]

rlw-september-2016

BONDI BEAT: September 2016

By STEVE MASCORD BECAUSE next year’s World Cup is in Australia, expect officials to pull out all the stops to have as many NRL stars sprinked across the teams as possible. The new CEO of the tournament, Andrew Hill, has been working on eligibility rules for years and walking a diplomatic tightrope in his dual […]

US Tomahawks

American Civil War Wages On

By STEVE MASCORD YOU know how it was supposed to happen. The United States Tomahawks would shrug off criticism that they were just a bunch of Aussies who went to a bucks weekend in Vegas, capture the hearts of everyone at the World Cup, make the quarter-finals and with the glow of their success still […]

KC Stadium, 4.45pm

Four Nations: ENGLAND 28 NEW ZEALAND 6 at KC Stadium

By STEVE MASCORD THE Kiwis’ Four Nations title defence finished prematurely yesterday with no regrets but coach Stephen Kearney issued a stern warning to errant hooker Issac Luke and utility Thomas Leuluai admitted some of his team-mates may have resented Rangi Chase chosing to play for England. The World Cup holders were comprehensively beaten, 28-6, […]

Screen Shot 2016-01-12 at 21.36.23

BONHAM: Mad Hatters Tea Party (1992)

By STEVE MASCORD FOR TWO members of a gold status rock band, Ian Hatton and Daniel MacMaster aren’t exactly megastars yet. Bonham guitarist Hatton sits across from me in a Sydney coffee shop with vocalist MacMaster. Unless you were a bigtime fan, you wouldn’t even recognise either of them in the street. When it comes […]

WLF TV: The Union – Luke Morley and Pete Shoulder interview

Loudmouth masthead

LOUDMOUTH: July 26, 1989

Compiled by STEVE MASCORD DIESEL will drive your dollar twice as far next month following the announcement of a second show on the Rock N Roll Tour for the Hordem Pavilion on Wednesday August 16. What’s more, lasi time we looked there was still a cuppla seats left for the first gig on August 15. So […]

KISS 3

ROCK CRUISING: Going Overboard (2012)

By STEVE MASCORD ON the final night of Vince Neil’s Motley Cruise in 2008, shortly before the aforementioned peroxide imp was about to go on in front of a raucous crowd of heartland head-bangers, a representative of Carnival Cruise lines approached the stage manager. “I’d like to make an announcement,” said the uniformed official, smiling. “Sure,” […]

Motley Crue

MOTLEY CRUE: Feeling Minnesota (1990)

By STEVE MASCORD THE mercury in Minneapolis is plunging mercilessly past zero as Middle America wallows in snow. Vince Neil, however, is waltzing down the hotel corridor towards his multi-room penthouse in a sleeveless v-neck shirt and blue boxer shorts. His dirty blonde hair spews out from under a neatly reversed baseball cap, just like […]

Slash

SLASH, Thebarton Theatre, Adelaide, 2012

Live review: SLASH at Thebarton Theatre, August 28 2012 By STEVE MASCORD NEW Year’s Eve in Las Vegas. A Tuesday night in Adelaide. After just three songs, they are neck-and-neck. This reviewer did not set out to compare the Slash show at Thebarton Theatre last night to Guns N’Roses all-bells-and-whistles outing at the Hard Rock Hotel […]

Danko Jones - Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue

DANKO JONES – Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue

Album review: DANKO JONES – Rock And Roll Is Black And Blue By STEVE MASCORD THIS reviewer first saw Danko Jones opening for Hardcore Superstar in Manchester a decade ago. It was spellbinding, this swaggering braggart sweating all over the first 10 rows as he tore through impossibly catchy tales of road life. It was […]

P1040238

MICHAEL MONROE: Finnish But Just Starting (2011)

By STEVE MASCORD THERE’s a neat news angle from this chat with Michael Monroe. But it’s only a fraction of the actual story. Read the full story at sludgefactory.com.au

One of my favourite songs of all time
WLF dinkus

WHITE LINE FEVER Column: Four

By STEVE MASCORD THIS time last year, Darren Lockyer and Jamie Peacock were tackling each other in the Four Nations. Yesterday, they met in London to tackle the vexed issue of rugby league’s eligibility rules. Of course, the retired captains of Australia and England (Peacock is still playing for Leeds) had a little prompting from […]

Travels

TRAVELS: XXVI

By STEVE MASCORD AS you might imagine, after five weeks attending matches, dinners and media events in Britain, one gains a few extra pounds – and a better understanding of the challenges facing rugby league here. What I am about to offer are a bunch of assumptions based on conversations with all manner of people […]

Puig Aubert

The Year Players And Referees Walked Off Mid-Game – Repeatedly

By LYLE BEATON A REVIEW of the French sporting press out of Paris during the early 1950s reveals an interesting story about rugby league and one of the strongest French club teams of the day, Marseille. The 1952-1953 season saw Marseille involved in something of a running battle with the French Rugby League hierarchy, as […]

Canterbury - logo

2013 Season Review: CANTERBURY BULLDOGS

By STEVE MASCORD IN a way, these Rugby League Week year-enders can serve as historical records. You can leaf through old dog eared copies of the The Bible and relive what went right – and wrong – for your favourite team. But in the case of 2012 grand finalists, the Canterbury Bulldogs, the full story […]

retired - Phil McKenzie

Legend Q&A: PHIL McKENZIE

By STEVE MASCORD More than 20 years before Rangi Chase, Jack Reed and Chris Heighington, you were an Australian picked in a Great Britain squad.. “Yeah, way back in 1990, I was approached by the Rugby League over here and asked if I’d make myself available. I think that was before they even realised I […]

Maloney, James

Fittler Endorses Maloney For NSW Job

By STEVE MASCORD JAMES Maloney says the endorsement of Brad Fittler as NSW Origin I five-eighth is no consolation for Country’s poor showing in what will probably be the second-last match ever against City. Fittler, who represented the Blues 31 times, reckons Cronulla’s Maloney is the stand-out candidate to wear the six jersey on June […]

McCarthy, Tyrone

Fullblood: An Englishman Who Plays For Ireland & Lives In Queensland

By STEVE MASCORD PROFESSIONAL rugby league players get a bad rap. At best, they are seen as mindless automatons, oblivous to the nuances of life around them, trained wholely to run at brick walls and tackle semi-trailers. At worse, our football stars are portrayed as oafish, neanderthal hoons with no regard for anyone but themselves. […]

P1020444

M3: The Last Of The Great Hair Metal Festivals? (2011)

By STEVE MASCORD TED Poley has a sportscar. I can only assume he wants you to know this, since the lead singer of Danger Danger has insisted he be interviewed by Classic Rock standing behind it, with the motor running. We had encountered Poley after his band’s set at M3, arguably the last pure hair […]

RLW Nov 2015

BONDI BEAT: November 2015 – The differences in RL media between Australia and the UK

By STEVE MASCORD I’VE held off writing about this subject for years now because I feared offending colleagues: the different ways in which rugby league is covered in Australia and Britain. But this year’s Super League grand final presented a couple of extremely stark examples of the contrast and I just couldn’t let the opportunity […]

Canterbury - logo

2013 Season Review: CANTERBURY BULLDOGS

By STEVE MASCORD IN a way, these Rugby League Week year-enders can serve as historical records. You can leaf through old dog eared copies of the The Bible and relive what went right – and wrong – for your favourite team. But in the case of 2012 grand finalists, the Canterbury Bulldogs, the full story […]

Don Furner/ABC

Raiders’ Complaints ‘Irrelevant’, Says Slater

By STEVE MASCORD MELBOURNE fullback Billy Slater has dismissed Canberra’s complaints about his involvement in a trial match as “irrelevant” while coach Craig Bellamy says he “can’t understand” his former club’s complaint to the NRL over the issue. A joust between the Raiders and Storm has erupted over Slater playing in a trial between the […]

Hamish Neal

FIVE METRE GAP: NRL Finals Week One

By HAMISH NEAL Like the way of the five metre gap in defence, reviewing the points from the NRL you may have missed from the first week of the finals. The now-legendary Geoff Toovey blow-up over penalty counts which earned the Manly mentor a $10,000 fine wasn’t needed despite the Silvertails narrow 4-0 loss to […]

sinbinsign1

SIN BIN: October 25 2013

By STEVE MASCORD THE most embarrassing bombed try in international rugby league history? Not according to those who saw Martin Offiah’s clanger 23 years ago. “Embarrassed to not score, but nothing wrong with a lil humble pie,” Sonny Bill Williams tweeted after his left foot slipped over the dead ball line as he attempted to […]

The Joy Of Six

THE JOY OF SIX: NRL Round 17 2015

THE BEAST IS COMING FOR YOU SO David Klemmer accidentally knocked out a NSW staffer who was holding a tackling bag? If he is on the field for a kick-off on Wednesday, Maroons players are best advised to stay out of his sight. The Beast Of Belmore has revealed he spots an opposition player from […]

Gold Coast - Luke Bailey

Getting The Journalism Wooden Spoon

By STEVE MASCORD COVERING a footy match seems a pretty straightforward task. I remember a Julia Roberts movie where the main male love interest was a sportswriter, depicted in the press box with a beer in hand and not a notebook in sight. Read the full story at footyalmanac.com.au

retired - Phil McKenzie

Legend Q&A: PHIL McKENZIE

By STEVE MASCORD More than 20 years before Rangi Chase, Jack Reed and Chris Heighington, you were an Australian picked in a Great Britain squad.. “Yeah, way back in 1990, I was approached by the Rugby League over here and asked if I’d make myself available. I think that was before they even realised I […]