We’re into August and thus the last month of winter footy codes is upon us, following the conclusion of this weekends slate of games, the AFL will have three regular season rounds remaining and the bye week before finals footy and the NRL three full rounds remaining.
With all the happenings and changes taking place in footy I thought it would be a great time to pen a Friday column, I hope to do more of these, regularly through the finals. Send your questions in via social media @theunsportsmenpod or to [email protected]
The NRL top 8 looks close to fait accompli with the Wests Tigers on the outside looking in having only themselves to blame for some lacklustre performances against wooden spoon battlers and lower teams. The situation at Wests is not helped by the uncertainty around Ivan Cleary’s tenure as he is linked heavily to the Penrith position ironically after being on the receiving end of a Gus Gould mid-season review. It’s hard to make sense of what transpired at the foot of the mountains towards the end of Anthony Griffin’s time and even harder to digest considering we’re four rounds away from September footy, bizarre timing to make a change and install a caretaker coach in Cameron Ciraldo – the former Shark, Knight and Penrith top grade back rower. Coaching controversy aside the Rabbitohs, Storm and Roosters look set for a three way shootout for the minor premiership with the three teams separated by one win.
How long before we see Gus Gould on the sideline with a clipboard? Perhaps at Penrith Gus is the only man that Gus trusts. Coach and general manager?
The back pages, talkback radio and podcasts (read: The future of voice!) in the southern states have been dominated by the off-ball incident involving Andrew Gaff and Andrew Brayshaw, I’ll get into that in the questions sectio (go check out our latest podcast for our take on the incident https://itunes.apple.com/au/podcast/the-unsportsmen-podcast/id1314108253 ) - Andrew Gaff is paying a huge toll for his mistake and Andrew Brayshaw has publicly forgiven Gaff, however it doesn’t help Brayshaw’s teeth and jaw. The race to snare a top 8 spot is heating up, you could throw a blanket over three through 12 on the ladder with only two wins separating them. This alleged columnist, in putting predictions on paper, has Port Adelaide hanging onto a spot into the 8 with Sydney dropping out on the back of a tough run home.
On the Punt?
No AFL games really took my fancy at the odds offered so in looking for some value on the round of footy games, I landed on South Sydney at $1.88 over the Roosters and the Bulldogs with a 3.5 start at $1.90 – My tips are only mere suggestions – Please gamble responsibly.
Now for some mailbag questions.
I’m convinced Gaff was attempting to punch/palm in the chest and got it horribly wrong, it happens 9000 times every Aussie rules game, I don’t care if that makes me an Andrew Gaff apologist. Gaff intended to punch, he didn’t intend the outcome nor to strike the face, I don’t care if the two actions are inclusive, I’m giving the benefit of the doubt to Gaff and Brayshaw has publicly accepted Gaff’s apology, the two are friends off the field which draws a line in the sand for me with regard to the family perusing a criminal charge for Gaff – Brayshaw’s father Mark publicly stated that the family would not be going down that path with the authorities, lets leave it at that until the AFL can develop a policy for the future that everyone understands.
Barry Hall should consider himself lucky he wasn’t prosecuted in 2008 for decking Staker – in my opinion that was a criminal act.
I might be a tad pessimistic, maybe even negative on the issue of divorce settlements, I’ll put it bluntly, Emma gets everything including a new partner from the peninsula and they move into the families home, Lachie is resigned to a one bedroom flat out by the airport, probably with a railway track against his bedroom window. Lachy eventually falls out with the Wiggles and is forced to take a job as a commercial radio DJ working the evening ‘top 40 countdown’ shift before spiralling out of control into alcoholism. He will end up looking like Goldberg from the Mighty Ducks.
Part two Eamon vs Frankie – I must admit I had to google this and I listened to the songs on YouTube, wow brings back memories, I remember the songs and 16 year old Aaron had no idea this was an R&B beef of epic proportions. The answer is yes, the Emma and Lachy bust-up will devolve into an R&B battle, the real winner will be the next Wiggle waiting in the wings to pounce on an open spot. Maybe the Wiggles figurehead, Anthony, will appoint a caretaker Wiggle, Gus Gould is available, he only does 30 hours of TV, radio and podcasting a week balancing that with general manager duties out at the foot of the mountains.
Anthony - “Wake up Jeff”
Gus – “No, no, no, no, no, no ... This bloke doesn’t tackle hard and he’s always asleep”.