The Eight Most Intriguing Players In The NRL

By STEVE MASCORD WE are constantly told that rugby league players have become vanilla, clichéd, boring. Either that, or that they are uneducated hoodlums. The idea that they can be engaging, interesting, intriguing people is something that rarely enters the public imagination. There could be a number of reasons for this. Current NRL media guidelines […]

The Biggest Season-to-season Form Reversals In Premiership History

By STEVE MASCORD (with research by David Middleton) THE salary cap is often given credit for the fact we have had 10 different premiers since 1998 – but you can’t thank the salary cap for what Cronulla have done this year. Maybe you can blame ASADA. From wooden spooners in 2014 to eliminating the reigning […]

Aaron Gray On The Good Side Of Souths’ Arizona Camp

By STEVE MASCORD IF Aaron Gray becomes South Sydney’s next home-grown great, The Burrow and all bunnies fans will have a broken toe to thank for it. With his close friend Kirisome Auva’a suspended for nine months over an incident of domestic abuse, the 20-year-old will be battling the likes of Joel Reddy and Bryson […]

Five Things We Learned: 2015 NRL Nines

By STEVE MASCORD SOUTH SYDNEY CAN SURVIVE THE DEPARTURE OF SAM BURGESS IT’S hazardous to make judgments on premiership candidacy in February and bordering on delusional to do so after a nines tournament. But it wasn’t so much South Sydney’s 18-14 win over Cronulla in a wonderfully offbeat final as little pieces of body language […]

BONDI BEAT: November 2014

By STEVE MASCORD AS a reporter, there is sometimes a feeling I get on grand final day – deep in the pit of my stomach, below the pies and chicken skewers – that is difficult to explain. I don’t get it after Test matches or State of Origin games or semis or Nines or Sevens. […]

What Did South Sydney’s Premiership Victory Really Mean?

By STEVE MASCORD LOTE Tuqiri’s face is ringed with digital voice recorders. He has a black premiership t-shirt over his sweat-soaked cardinal and myrtle South Sydney jersey. He admits retirement is tempting. And then the dual international, who played in a grand final for Brisbane 14 years ago, is momentarily stuck for words. He’s trying […]

The Rabbitohs Star Who Prepared In Secret, Alone For A Shot At History

By STEVE MASCORD A TOP secret training camp under the Australian Institute of Sport’s Glen Workman has made Ben Te’o the man who can make the biggest difference in Sunday’s grand final. Teo, banned for a month on a chicken wing charge in the lead-up to Saturday’s preliminary final against Sydney Roosters, stunned the competition […]

The A-List: SAM BURGESS (South Sydney, NRL All Stars, England & Great Britain)

By STEVE MASCORD ON a dreary, cold, wet Sydney day, the redeveloped Redfern Oval gives off an unearthly green hue. It’s almost as if the lighting that allows Melbourne AAMI Park to turn the colour of the host team has been installed just below the historic patch of grass. In the Park Cafe at the […]

DISCORD 2014: Can Duncan Thompson’s ‘Contract Football’ Save Rugby League?

By STEVE MASCORD EARLY in a recent Super League game, commentator Paul Cullen remarked: “We’ve been going for 10 minutes and there’s not a blade of grass that’s not been stood on”. Leaving aside the double negative, you can picture the sort of game Cullen was describing – touchline to touchline attack, from the outset. […]