DISCORD 2013: Edition 28

DiscordBy STEVE MASCORD

SINCE this is the last Discord before Origin III, I am going to disgust and confound all readers by making a shocking revelation.

I don’t care who wins.

That’s right, from the column that argued brawling in interstate football is bad comes the earth-shattering contention that the result next Wednesday at ANZ Stadium match between NSW and Queensland doesn’t matter.

I just can’t muster the anger or indignation to do anything but laugh when people say Queensland always cheats or NSW are thugs or the referees are useless. Do you people actually BELIEVE that stuff?

I guess that’s why Origin rakes in the millions – because you do. It REALLY upsets you. But for me it’s a game of football. If I am leaning towards one side or another, it’s for very personal reasons.

Yes, I live in New South Wales. But a whole state is just too mainstream for me to get on board. There’re too many OTHER people on board already, you don’t need me. I’m from Wollongong but I was able to follow the Steelers because only around 180,000 people lived there at the time.

We were in the minority. We were underdogs. I can’t get my head around being passionately one-eyed towards something that FOUR MILLION other people are passionately one-eyed about.

As a kid, Wally Lewis was my favourite player so I liked Queensland. That put me in the minority, which is where I firmly believe I belong. When NSW struggled to win, I kind of leaned towards them out of sympathy. And when I started covering the Queensland camps for the Herald, I felt some empathy for the Maroons again, because I was dealing with them on a daily basis and they were nice guys.

I have been dealing with the Blues a fair bit this series, so I suppose I am leaning at little towards them again. Nice guys. Their media manager, Tristan Hay, has been great. Go Tristan!

But while you’re throwing stuff at your television next Wednesday or cursing the referee or drowning your sorrows or chucking a sicky the next day because you celebrated all night, I’ll just be enjoying a game of footy.

I can’t lose. But, having written this column, I probably can’t win now either. State of Origin is the one arena where objectivity is NOT the done thing….

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CONGRATULATIONS are in order to the Canadian Rugby League for attracting 7168 people to the international t Toronto’s Lamport Stadium against the United States at the weekend.

To top it all off, the Wolverines beat a team involved in the World Cup, 36-20.

Attracting an attendance like that for what was essentially an amateur game indicates to Discord that Toronto is becoming an actual hotbed for the game.

We should be looking at taking professional matches there and capitalising on the undoubted interest.

Still on North America, the story of the 1953 American All Stars trip to Australasia – No Helmets Required by Gavin Willacy – was fittingly released on July 4.

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COMMENTS time and Pierre plus Long-Lost League Fan say lack of games on free-to-air television is hurting rugby league. There are three games on free-to-air though, not one, but your perspectives are interesting.

read on

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