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Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News

Monday’s Rugby News has Jordan Uelese chatting about his debut, players and fans talking about the game in WA, John Eales’ take on the Senate inquiry and the results from the weekend.


Fresh Meat Uelese

170903 Jordan Uelese

Jordan Uelese made his Wallabies debut unexpectedly early on Saturday night, coming on only 28 minutes in after TPN injured himself again.

Uelese, as our Player Ratings will show when they’re eventually up (Bobas!), played fairly well despite his ridiculous lid. Here he is with his views:

“As soon as I came on … the Springboks really chatted out from the start … but we always knew that was going to happen,” Uelese told the SMH.

“Fresh meat and those kind of [words were used] but it was awesome just to be in the thick of it.

“It happened so quick. They were like, ‘Jordan, you’re on’ and I just had to quickly run on. I had a job to do and I think the lads prepared me very well if the opportunity did arise I’d be ready to do the job but I was pretty nervous at first.

“It happened so quick that I just had to go on and go straight into fifth gear.”

Wallaby 912, Uelese was born in NZ but moved to Melbourne at young age. Unlike Tyrel Lomax, he’s also not a dog to Australian rugby.

“My No.1 goal in life was to put on that gold jersey and to fulfil that, I’ve got to go find new goals now,” said Uelese, who is a Good Bloke.

“It hasn’t really sunk in yet. Looking around and donning the gold, it doesn’t really feel real just yet but I’ll let it sink in and enjoy this moment with my family, who obviously travelled from Melbourne.

“Just running out there and singing your national anthem, it’s an unreal feeling. I tried to hold back the tears.

“The adrenaline rush was huge, just the build-up was immense. I think everyone couldn’t really believe that a 20-year-old was going to be on the bench for the Wallabies with not much experience. The boys really prepared me for this opportunity that arose and I think it was awesome that the senior lads got around me and it’s awesome that Cheik brought me in at such an early stage just to feed off these senior players.”

Having physicality and aggression, naturally Michael Cheika is pleased with Uelese’s performance.

“I thought he did pretty well. He got in there first scrum, did really well. He had a good lineout … hit the mark. He’s a talent. With the guys fatiguing a little bit I thought he added a lot of steel in the front row at the scrum.”

With Stephen Moore’s bub having arrived (I think), Uelese will probably not be part of the squad for the Argentina game.

For-orce

Photo by Tom Offer

Photo by Tom Offer

Just under 18,000 turned out for the Force game on the weekend, against the backdrop of the whole Force Fiasco™. If you were wondering what the peeps at the ground – lots of them wearing blue, including the ball girls and boys, and the physios – were chanting, it was ‘Force’ in two syllables. And turning one syllable words into two syllables is what Western Australians do best. No, really, ask them to say ‘beer’ or ‘here’.

Anyway, Force fans weren’t happy.

Fox Sports reports that there was a bloke outside the ground holding up a very angry sign, that in short said ‘Rot in Hell ARU’. His name is David Hayter, here’s what he had to say:

“I won’t be attending another Wallabies game and I personally know another 10 fans who boycotted this Test because of the stupid ARU decision to cut the Force,” Hayter said.

“The ARU can bail out NSW Rugby more than once but they are prepared to lose rugby in WA for good without realising how valuable it really is. The ARU will be arguing over the entrails of Super Rugby when it comes to their next deal because it won’t be resembling what it does now.”

Fox Sports has a few grabs from the 3 Force players who turned out for the Wallabies on the weekend – Adam Coleman, TPN, and Curtis Rona.

“It was an amazing feeling to get the ‘Sea of Blue’ to a Wallabies game … it gave me goosebumps with the ‘Force’ chant at the kick-off and the support for the Wallabies which is a real credit to the WA rugby community. I almost had to check what jersey I was wearing there was so much blue in the crowd,” Coleman said.

TPN echoed Coleman’s statements, saying “I was quite emotional, I won’t lie, because I definitely felt happy but sad at the same time that this could possibly be the last time I see them, those locals who I always saw in every game for the Force.

“I think a lot of the other crowds need to take a leaf from their book because that’s what you call support, right from the first minute to minute 80. We were playing for them as well.”

“Hopefully, that little meaty was just a token of what they’ve given me throughout this whole Super Rugby season,” continued TPN, referring to his lineout drive try.

On the other hand, rugby.com.au also reports that some Wallabies players rocked up to watch a grand final game in the WA Juniors comp, only to be verballed by a few angry Force fans.

“A group of players visited the Rugby WA junior grand final day on Saturday and were confronted by some angry supporters,” says the article.

“Though we’re told there wasn’t anything too ugly about the exchanges, the ire wasn’t quite directed at the right target.”

Senate Thingy

Picture: Bruce Long Source: The Courier-Mail

Picture: Bruce Long Source: The Courier-Mail

John Eales isn’t a happy chappy about the Senate inquiry that was announced last week.

Yep, the Senate will be looking into the ARU’s running. It’s been initiated by WA Senator Linda Reynolds. There’s a funny photo about the Senate inquiry somewhere on Twitter but I can’t find it so just imagine you saw it.

“There’s nothing we can do to stop that but I know that there is nothing the ARU or the ARU board has got to hide,” Eales said, according to the SMH. “People can go through that [document]. We’ve published everything. Go through that timeline and there’s detail.

 

NRC + 7s

Image Credit – Karen Watson

Macquarie University hosted both the latest round of uni 7s as well as an NRC game on the weekend, with UQ and the Greater Sydney Rams being the big winners.

The University of Queensland have now won both legs of the series so far, and neither have they lost a game. They beat fellow QUEENSLANDERS Bond University 22-17 in the Gold Medal match yesterday.

Griffith University made in a QUEENSLAND trifecta, beating Macquarie University 20-5 to grab the bronze medal. Adelaide beat Canberra to 5th, while New England beat Tasmania to 7th.

After the 7s was all said and done, Jed Holloway and his Rams put the Rays to sword 41-26. Most importantly, the Rams retain the Horan-Little Shield and the Benn Robinson Bell, which is really what everyone cares about when it comes to the NRC.

“We’re probably a bit disappointed that we couldn’t get the bonus point win, but it’s two wins on the trot for the Rams, and that’s something we’ve not done in the NRC,” Holloway told GAGR friend Brett McKay.

“I think everyone’s playing with a bit of a chip on their shoulder, there’s a few of us coming off disappointing Shute Shield or Super Rugby seasons and we’re all out to prove our point, and that’s shown in these first two games.”

Meanwhile, and because this has nowhere else to go, Tyrel Lomax – the up-and-coming Rebels prop – has signed for the Highlanders next year as he seeks to chase his All Blacks dream.

Lomax, the son Kiwi league prop John Lomax, was born in Australia but moved between NZ and Australia during his childhood. Lomax will join up with the Highlanders in 2019 if he isn’t granted an early release before then by the ARU and Rebels.

Cheika called Lomax up in his 48-man Wallaby squad earlier this year, and so naturally it was a hard decision for Lomax to choose to play for the team that doesn’t tread water.

“I grew up in New Zealand and as an aspiring rugby player the chance to play for a NZ Super Rugby club was too good an opportunity to turn down,” he told Fox Sports.

“As a young prop I can’t wait to get to the Highlanders, they have an awesome [winning] culture there and I just want to immerse myself in it and learn as much as possible.”

  • Kiwi rugby lover

    To be fair to Eales I do wonder what exactly the senate inquiry will achieve. I’d be interested to know if anyone actually does have an idea on this

    • Andrew Luscombe

      If a solid decision was made then it will be made more credible and more accepted

      If it wasn’t then the reasons why will become clear and hopefully any incompetence won’t be repeated.

      • Woolfe

        The definition of madness is carrying on doing the same thing and expecting a different result. Unless the whole board is removed incompetence will continue.

        • Bay35Pablo

          Once again this isn’t just about the board. It’s about the whole stricture from ARU down to how for example NSWRU, NSWCRU, NSWJRU etc are split.
          On your logic replacing Abbott with Turnbull, or Rudd with Gillard, should have fixed everything …..

        • Woolfe

          With the stinking rotten fish head still in place no meaningful changes can be made. And no my logic is sound, how can any meaningful change be made when the leadership is totally incompetent?

        • Alister Smith

          G’day Pablo – you made a similar response in response to one of my comments but you went a little further here than in those initial comments to me and I am interested in your thoughts on the best structure overall. I have commented previously that we need to restructure the game from the ground up, we have individualised successes in some areas (School Rugby Comps, some junior levels, 7’s, bris/syd grade comps). However, the overall health of the game is poor and some of it appears to come from these areas that are successful protecting their patches (which is perfectly understandable). I don’t pretend to know how to solve it – i was part of Brisbane club rugby once but i live in a country area now and I am not able to be involved in the game as I used to be. What is your vision for a new structure for Australian Rugby (rather than the ARU though it might be part of it). How do states and schools and juniors all fit in. How do we avoid fighting against each other, duplicating services and costs and protecting ourselves while putting at risk the whole future of the game?

      • Kiwi rugby lover

        I get that mate, and I think that would be a good thing. I guess my question is really around, “Is the Senat actually able to make any changes?” I mean can they get the ARU to change or rescind the decision or is this just a paper exercise that might make people feel better but won’t actuallu make any changes?

        • Andrew Luscombe

          The inquiry is very unlikely to result in the government overiding the decision, but if things come out that make the decision look very bad, and in particular if the board feels they were not given the whole story, then there’s still time to change. The pro14 season was formally decided only 8 or so weeks prior to the start of the season. There’s still 20 or so weeks until the next SR season. It’s all getting pretty unlikely now though.

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Thanks

        • onlinesideline

          But can the senate actually demand a full disclosure of details about what ever it wants from the ARU legally – whats the extent of their powers, thats what Im curious about.

          ie its only an enquiry by the senate not a commission where ppl can be subpoened and must answer quuestions – correct ?

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Me too mate. I feel the ARU may have the ability to tell the Senate to get stuffed.

        • Brisneyland Local

          Not if they ever want another federal dollar!

        • Kiwi rugby lover

          Excuse the ignorance, I am Kiwi after all, but does the state government affect that and maybe not a direct “get stuffed”. But what can the state actually force them to do?

        • Brisneyland Local

          The Senate enquiry is a federal senate enquiry. Launched by the Western Australian member! And I would never hold it against you for asking, because I know bugger all about politics in NZ. But I suppose I should as one of the companies I own does trade there!

        • Andrew Luscombe

          They can make particular people attend, answer questions, and produce documents. Answering falsely is an offence.

          They can provide legal protection for witnesses, and submissions are usually subject to parliamentary privilege (eg submitters can not be sued for libel provided the submission is the only public release of any potentially libelous information).

          The committee decides what is released. They tend to give a right of reply to any accusations.

          It can be quite a powerful inquiry.

          It’s all outlined on the web site.

        • DK

          The Senate can’t do much but from the findings action can be taken. If they find that the ARU board has miss-managed rugby at all levels (point E in the submitted doc) all the clubs in Australia could put together a class action against the ARU. If organised enough.

        • SuckerForRed

          I would assume, based on the soccer experience, that is the Senate find that there has been miss-management that they can “encourage” change by removing/withholding government funding. The ARU might feel they can refuse private funding that comes with conditions, not sure they are in the position to tell the Government(s) to go stick it. Also if the Senate find that funding provide by the Government has been miss-managed they can demand that the funds are repaid.

        • Brisneyland Local

          I love the “Miss” managed part. You never fail to make me smile!

        • SuckerForRed

          :-P

        • Brisneyland Local

          And again!

      • Alister Smith

        I know a lot of people question the need for an inquiry but, with the greatest respect to John Eales (and perhaps a little less respect to the ARU Chairman who doesn’t appear to show a great deal of respect for anyone else), the ARU are the recipient of federal government funds, particularly with 7’s as an Olympic sport and also has received a substantial amount of funding from the WA state government. The main part of Sen. Reynolds role as a Senator for WA in the Federal Parliament is to represent the right of the state that she represents. So if a code that receives substantial funding from the Federal Government withdraws its support for a state then I think that is a genuine concern, particularly if there are issues around the transparency of that decision or its legitimacy (was there a genuine review based on an accepted criteria or was the decision made because one side was legally easier to get rid of). There was also a board member that resigned because he was not happy with the process being adopted. The ARU have partially addressed some of those financial reasons but only on a fairly superficial level, and there were more than just financial criteria in the original criteria outlined. So personally I think the requirement for a Senate Enquiry is justified in this instance – perhaps not the most critical thing facing the nation or WA at the moment but governments have the capacity to consider all sorts of things at one time – not just the most pressing.

        • Sevenwithasixonmyback

          Very valid point raised re; govt. funding. The ARU seems to have boundless financial contributors, most of whom are plastered on the media wall at our losing interviews.
          One very big contrubutor of funding, as you clearly illustrate Alister Smith, is we the people. Be that through our govt. funding or our memberships and gate and merchandise revenue. Yet it is we the people that largely receive no great credit and we rarely are the recipients of the truth, when in actual fact we are perhaps the greatest stakeholders.

    • SuckerForRed

      Part of me wonders too. But from what I have seen of the terms of reference it will be a bit wider than just how the decision to cut the Force was made. It will also be looking at how they ended up in the position that the decision had to be made in the first place. Whether it achieves anything is yet to be seen.

    • Greg

      I don’t see how it will achieve anything. The enquiries are typically a forum for boorish behaviour by some members that achieves little but embarrassment for some of those involved.

    • Brisneyland Local

      KRL it is not the overt outcomes that will count. It is the behind the scenes pressure it will place on Clyne and the board. No organisation escapes clean out of Senate enquiries. trust me on that one have fronted many. The pressure on the board, and particularly Clyne will be immense. I think he will be unlikely to survive it.
      With all things my friend the best disinfectant is daylight! And that is what will worry them.

  • Andrew Luscombe

    Anyone can make a written submission to these inquiries, and show up to the public hearings. Here’s the link to the rugby one.

    http://www.aph.gov.au/Parliamentary_Business/Committees/Senate/Community_Affairs/Futureofrugbyunion

    Might be worth people submitting their questions, or showing up to the first public hearing which is on 20th Sept in Perth.

    • BigNickHartman

      do they accept podcasts as submissions?

      • Andrew Luscombe

        I don’t know. There’s an email address at the link where you can ask questions about what can be submitted.

        I imagine they record and possibly transcribe the hearings, so they might be able to deal with a podcast.

    • Perth girl

      I’ll be making a submission and I know many people who will be also

      • Brisneyland Local

        Me too! My barrister is drafting it for me now!

    • Perth girl

      Andrew the website says last date for submissions is 12 Oct and reporting date from 13 November, do you mean the first public hearing will be in Perth on 20 November?

      • Andrew Luscombe

        No. 20th September. There may be others, but they haven’t been announced yet.

        All hearings have to be before the release of the report because the report is based on the hearings and submissions. I imagine all hearings will be before the closing date for submissions also.

        This is all supposing no dates change due to unexpected questions being raised that require further investigations.

        • Perth girl

          Thank you Andrew

  • dsb

    As I have said elsewhere if you are part of the corporate governance of an organisation and you are caught on the back foot defending what you did or didn’t do to your customer base and you profess to also be a national organisation, then you have already lost the plot and the confidence of those who you are meant to have served. I cant see the ARU easily restoring its credibility in this respect and it needs to undergo a period of self reflection and obviously a restructure of how it operates. If it cant see that and move quickly someone might do it to them! Perhaps that is why the high level of defensive anxiety we are now experiencing. Good governance is about being strategic and taking stakeholders with you.

  • Brumby Runner

    Having a glass of be-ah is also a very Victorian thing.

    Seriously though, I am certain I saw TPN’s eyes rolling in different directions when he tried to focus while sitting on the bench after his concussion test. I’m wondering if that might be the natural base situation for TPN these days so that the concussion test didn’t actually find anything untoward?

    • Cam

      I think he picked up a poke in the eye as well. Seriously though, how many times does the guy get his head in a bad spot?
      On another note, WTF is Hanigan still doing in the run on XV? Does it drive anyone else insane?!!

      • Selector

        Like, Gary Busey insane mate… When he shoved EE in the game last week (the weakest shove in the back) and then let himself get ragdolled straight after, was nearly as funny as when he tried to clear out Retallick from a ruck in Game 2

    • Brisneyland Local

      Yeah I saw that. I was absolutely staggered with him returning to thie field. Particularly noting the issues he has already had.

  • Who?

    Well done to David the ARU Hayter. Good job explaining – succinctly – why you’re important to the game (i.e. you’re not a fair weather fan), and how you genuinely feel.
    Deserves 100k Facebook likes!

  • oztimmay
    • Kiwi rugby lover

      Ha. I like it

  • Moz
    • Perth girl

      It’s hilarious but so true

    • Missing Link

      bravo bravo

  • Perth girl

    I haven’t heard anything about players attending junior award ceremonies let alone being abused. I know John Eales did attend an award ceremony in WA. I have heard a story that the ERU asked clubs to provide a junior aged 4 to 6 to walk on the ground with the players at the start of the game then said they couldn’t go on as “there were not 46″ of them, nothing to do with the fact that they were wearing Force it of course! A Club parent has said they were not told they had to provide a total of 46 or they could have easily done that

  • Chinese Dave

    Unless you think there was something untoward about the ARU’s decision, this Senate inquiry is just a waste of time (other than for Senator Reynolds to remind WA that she exists). I think the ARU decision is a bad one, but they’re allowed to make bad decisions and all the inquiry will do is force them to repeat their flawed reasoning for the decision.

    • mikado

      I expect it’s not particularly the concern of the Federal Senate, but I was curious at the ARU document that suggested that Victorian State subsidies make the Rebels effectively cost neutral compared to the Force. And that the ARU couldn’t reveal the magnitude of these subsidies as they are subject to contractual confidentiality. Has anyone asked the Victorian government what it has committed to? Does the government not need to state its commitments in its own accounts? I’d imagine the taxpayers of Victoria might be disgruntled about hefty State support to a minority sport.

      • Chinese Dave

        Yeah, I agree about transparency, it would piss me off too, but it’s not limited to this instance. QLD “won” the logies from Victoria and the premier wouldn’t disclose how much they’re paying. You see, it commercial in confidence… Nice excuse.

  • Brisneyland Local

    Hey GAGR’s, well if you want to know why I love Fiji so much. This is why! go the Drua!
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1Nm7X-p0Yyw

    • Bernie Chan

      It is never boring watching our Pacific Island cousin play rugger…that Bris Fiji v Bris Samoa “friendly” is always such a spectacle. Passionate, physical…and the great running and ball skills…

      • Brisneyland Local

        YEp.
        I realy think the Drua are going to present a serious challenge for a lot of the NRC teams this season!

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Hopes to play David Pocock in the inevitable biopic. Lifelong fan of whoever Jarrad Hayne is currently playing for.

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