Rugby Report Card 54 - Getting Moody (About The State Of The Game) - Green and Gold Rugby

Rugby Report Card 54 – Getting Moody (About The State Of The Game)

Rugby Report Card 54 – Getting Moody (About The State Of The Game)

The Three amigos are back together to discuss what is hopefully the lowest point of Australian Rugby. Surely up from here

Warning – may contain rude words

  • Moz

    Seriously??? What the hell have I ever done to you guys, that you feel it is necessary to go out and stick the knife in at every opportunity??

    Yes, you got stuck into the Force, and try to say that you thought it was a great idea to cut them (podcast 43). If you recall, I did express my disappointment at you (i’m looking at you Blake) for having those views, and pointed out that I thought you were off the mark.

    And now in your latest podcast you are doing it again, and I’m now looking at both Blake and Jim (thanks Richard for not sinking down to their level).

    Perhaps if I could tell you a little about myself. Whilst I originally hail from Perth, I’m am now what you refer to as an expat, and I live in Singapore. So, fxxk you for having a go at expats, and fxxk you for especially having a go at expats who live in Singapore, and finally a big fxxk you for having a go at expats who live in Singapore who actually would like to go and watch the Sunwolves play here.

    And what do you mean by the comment “The word expat perfectly describes the blokes in Singapore”? Seriously, what a big “fxxk you” that is! I’ve been a loyal follower of your podcasts, I try to spread the word, and once again you guys stick the knife in. So, fxxk you once again!

    Other than that, well done and keep up the good work. No doubt I’ll listen to you have another go at me next week – I try not to take it personally, but really???

    • Blake The rugby Report Card

      Sorry man (Blake here)

      We seriously never intend to big dicks. (Although we often are) Thanks for listening and sorry for sticking the knife in.

      I have actually completely changed my views and recognise that the Force should have stayed and needed to stay. One day when we are writing about the decline and death of Aus rugby we will point to that decision as being a colossal mistake and I was on the wrong side of history on that one. I do still feel we only have the talent for 4 (maybe 3) teams, but it is without a doubt the Force who should have stayed in the comp. All the proof you need is the passion from the fans.

      As for the expats comments… we just go for the gag first and I can honestly say there is 0 malice it what we are saying. Obviously it doesn’t make it ay less shitty. But, we will always speak off the top of our heads because we deeply believe that this is what makes the podcast worth doing and gives it a point of difference compared to most other rugby media.

      So thanks for listening, thanks for calling us out on our shit. Enjoy Singapore and the Sunwolves. I look forward to stepping on another land mine next week.

      Cheers, Blake

      • Mica

        Respect to both you and Moz to firstly have the balls to call out the issue and then to you Blake to take it on the chin and apologise. Takes character to do these things. Love the GAGR community and the general respect that everyone has for each other, even when there’s disagreement.

      • Richard Patterson

        I like many have been impressed with the local support in Western Australia for the re-surfaced Western Force team in this new competition. However, it leaves the obvious question of where those same Force fans were in 2014-16 when the whole franchise took a steady turn for the worse? The history of non-AFL sporting franchises setting up in WA is littered with failures. Surely rugby fans there knew that? Surely they knew that whether the Force were winning or losing or whether the Force were playing attractive or unattractive rugby, the fan base had to be there supporting them to best ensure their viability and ultimate survival. Support them like they did in the more halcyon days of 2007-09.

        As the on-field results deteriorated so did the crowds, and the sponsors, and the interest from areas outside WA. Recall those years when the Force were capable of stealing a few wins as they ambushed touring teams dropping in after a tough South African tour? Suddenly they stopped as the Force could not field a side skilled enough or competitive enough to beat those touring sides. The headwinds kept growing and eventually the franchise proved to be untenable. Locals claim it was a travesty. Maybe it was. All I know is it’s much like married life. You stay together in good times and bad. In sickness and health. By failing to support the team when it was needed the team was shut down. Perth folks never knew how good they had it, until it was taken away. Evidence these past few weeks merely confirms that.

        • Moz

          Sorry Richard, but that is extremely selective, and pretty much ignores a lot of the debate and information that has gone on over the last year. The Force has always kept a pretty loyal fan base. However, that was tested right through from 2012-2016 when Michael Foley was the coach – the style of footy he had the team play was pretty hard to watch at times, and it wasn’t doing much to bring the crowds in. Previously they had Richard Graham from 2010-2011. You might say that you have to stick in there for good time and bad, but that is taking the piss. 6 years of coaches out of their depth, playing unimaginative footy.

          Also, during this time, we now know that the Rebels were given a significant amount of support, both financially (overtly as well as the backroom deals done that came up in the Senate Inquiry), as well as been give more overseas and marque players. So the ARU was doing all they could to have the Rebel succeed, while doing basically nothing for the Force. Just look at the number of Wallabies the Tahs had compared the Force at the same time – Wallabies being co-funded by the ARU. So, it is pretty selective to say that the fans didn’t know how good they had it, when they were constantly served up a shit sandwich by the governing body. Its rather more remarkable how many fans the Force still had despite getting little to no support from the ARU.

          And remember, despite all that, there was still enough of a fan base to launch the “Own the Force” capital raising exercise. Fans still wanted t buy into the club, and save the team. This started even before the ARU started taking about cutting at team, but rather was an action to take back ownership of the club and make it more financial.

        • Richard Patterson

          All valid points Moz. The Force though had some extremely capable rugby people in Australia very categorically advise them not to hire Michael Foley. These saw the damage he had done to the Waratahs in his time there and were adamant it would be a step in the wrong direction. The Force ignored their advice and hired Michael Foley.

        • Gareth

          Sadly Three force coaches in a row have not succeeded anywhere else in their careers. That’s enough to reduce the loyal fans down to the absolute core of diehards.
          I think thats about:
          5-8k for the brumbies
          11k for the reds
          10-14k for the tahs
          not sure about the rebels.
          (in terms of those who go to the matches)

        • Richard Patterson

          What does that say about the Western Force as a franchise and the level of support from the West Australian rugby community that they were unable to recruit a well qualified head coach for all those years?

        • Moz

          I don’t really think the Force have been on their pat in regards to that question. I think we cold very safely point the finger at every Australian Super team, plus the national time while we are at it. Lets not throw all the crap just at the Force here. And when they finally did get a good up and coming coach, who was developing nicely, they cute team.

        • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

          Interesting that you do attack the Force supporters and keep them to a higher standard than other franchises such as the Rebels. An organisation that went bust twice in its short lifetime, sucked the ARU dry and despite a merger with the Force are stil unable to attract a following.

        • Moz

          Richard, I agree it was a bad decision, especially coming after both having previously hiring Richard Graham, and more importantly seeing what he did to the Waratahs. It was just bloody hard to watch them play during this time. You could then just see the change (although it was still only building) once Dave Wessels took over, and the team started exciting fans again!

        • Richard Patterson

          Yes indeed Moz. It was not a vision the Western Force set out with when it was launched. Aren’t they though the same growing pains any new franchise experiences once the initial euphoria settles down? Surely though people in Perth should have known that? Hadn’t they already experienced professional franchises set up, and then fold? Shouldn’t the Force have been working twice as hard to ensure that same fate was not dealt to them if the stress did go on and the questions did start to get asked?

        • Moz

          I get it that the Force should have tried harder earlier to prevent being cut from the competition. But again, you can’t look at this too simplistically. The Force was trying to break into an extremely pro-AFL market. You can have as many diehard fans as you like, but if the ARU are not going to financially support this move then it is going to fail. The ARU threw more than 3 times the amount of money at the Rebels than they did at the Force. They gave them greater access to overseas players. So, the Force may know some of the lessons, and work twice as hard, but they needed financial and player support from the ARU if they wanted to create a successful brand which had a half decent chance of surviving. Compare that to what the AFL have done with breaking into Western Sydney. The governing body has gotten right behind that exercise, and not just left it up to the GWS to succeed. So, yes, the Force could have done more, but I think more of that questioning should have been directed at the ARU’s whole handling of the expansion.

        • Richard Patterson

          I understand Moz. I would have taken greater control of the situation and shored up much deeper local support to minimise my reliance on the ARU. When they came over knocking, you would have produced a properly thought-out, self-supporting business model that showed very deep, very sustainable connections with the Force to all levels of the Western Australian community. They didn’t, the ARU tipped it over.

        • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

          Again you are holding the Force supporters to a much higher standard than any other supporters. WA is a high growth area for rugby that requires investment. It will always take about a decade to get youngsters that took up rugby when the Force was formed to reach the professional side. Richard H, DHP and RHP were youngsters when the Force were formed and the Force needed ARU support until we can consistently deliver a surplus of quality players. Under especially O’Neil and Pulver that never happened. We have reached a critical mass to develop our own competition with enough passion to make it work. Would the Rebels have done what we did or the Brumbies?

        • Gareth

          I like the married analogy – in my case i have a long distance love with the brumbies but have a local girlfriend here in brisbane with the reds. Both are very unhappy relationships at the moment.

        • Richard Patterson

          True fans stick with their team through thick and thin.

        • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

          To be fair to us Force fans we are the loyalist fans in the country. Despite year on year of disappointment we paid the highest for membership and tickets in the country and still turned up. The Richard Graham years were especially tough. When the ARU dropped funding for our academy side, we dug deep into our profits to establish the Future Force. When we tried to get a good coach in Cheika, the ARU ensured that he ended up at the Tahs and send us Foley. When the ARU wanted cut the team we set up an Own the Force campaign, however the decision was made at end 2016 to axe us and nothing we did would have changed it.
          It took a decade to improve local club rugby and the Future Force players just started to deliver good superugby players. Richard Hardwick even made the Wallabies. In 2017 we had 12 locally grown players in our squad and several others playing for other franchises. After a decade of investment wA Rugby was producing a return but then the ARU used a farce of a selection process to axe us, without even bothering to explain why. In the meantime the Rebels continue to suck the ARU dry. It never made a profit, it cannot attract spectators – despite playing with more than half of our team.

      • Moz

        Bless you Blake, all is forgiven!!! At least until next week when you possibly have a go at Expat Force fans watching the Sunwolves in a stadium that is too large for the small crowd that will no doubt be there! We used to get 3 Sunwolves games a year, but they have now cut us down to one -don’t take that away from us!

        And having a go at expats… I’m going to go home, make a G&T and yell at the servants, before heading down to the club…pip pip, tally ho!

        No, don’t hold back, go for it!

        But also, nice acknowledgment on the Force. I’ve been watching the games on 7mate, as well as getting the reports from family and friends who have been there. Geez, there is a great atmosphere and vibe there, people out watching their footy and having a great social time there. Always helps when you are winning, but the way the fans have been engaged is a lesson for the RA. With regards to how many teams can Oz really sustain, there are the numbers out there to have more teams, it is just that a lot are now choosing to play overseas. The recent G&GR article on it cover the whole issue pretty well. If we could bring in a few other Billionaires to throw around some money, we could afford to bring back enough players to have 4-5 competitive teams, plus develop the necessary coaches and support.

        Keep up the good work, and tell Jim to pull his finger out about the teeshirts!

        • Los Rojo Coala

          But seriously, expats in Singapore are the worst.

        • Moz

          Yes, they did some extensive research and found that us Singapore expats are in fact the worst, on every measure and criteria. Its something that we are actually very proud of. Thanks!

      • Huw Tindall

        Is Brad Shields an ‘expat’ rugby player now?

      • Hannes En Brianda Barnard

        Great that you acknowledge the mistake of axing the Force. That is not good enough, as you supported this decision you should help us now rectify the mistake. You can help by using your public platform to show that the projected benefits never materialised and communicate the damage to the game in terms of participation in WA. Also if the press can help to keep those that refuse to listen to different views and made this mistake are kept accountable (especially Cameron Clyne) we can avoid a similar situation in the future.

  • Mart

    The rules on the intercept knock down have to change.

    The Taqele send off was insanity. He had taken 2 intercepts previously why would the ref think this was not an intercept but a deliberate attempt to screw up the attack and knock the ball down… why am i even asking the question…i spose the same reason he though there was no malice in dumping Wells on his head, or elbowing someone in the throat, or holding the ball illeagally in a ruck and making it spray out…

    Wrap your head around that for rugby rules. Okeefe has deemed intent from Taqele when going for an intercept, as malicious enough to warrant a send off But the intent to run into a defender off the ball, leading with your elbow at their face….not even worth a penalty!

    • Richard Patterson

      The Naiyaravoro yellow-card is symptomatic of the low levels of rugby intelligence, situational awareness and lack of basic discipline that continue to haunt the Waratahs game after game, season after season. The Crusaders were already under a penalty advantage — Naiyaravoro should have known that. Any successful interception would have been called back. Any unsuccessful interception attempt ran risk of being interpreted as an intentional knock-on and opened up the possibility of a yellow card. There was zero upside – and not inconsiderable downside for Naiyaravoro and the Waratahs, at a critical time in the match. It was a pointless gamble and he paid a big price. It’s labelled “taking the referee out of the contest”. The smart teams do it. The poor sides do not. We saw that once again on Saturday.

      • Mart

        You make a good point about the penalty advantage, I’d forgotten about that.

        I still stand by the fact that it clearly is not an intentional knock down. And it is hard to explain to kids why that is a yellow card But the Franks incident..etc you get the point

        • Richard Patterson

          Yep I do. The officiating crew messed up with the Joe Moody incident. When the stress goes on though, cool heads must prevail. Too many times I fail to see it with the Waratahs. It’s why too often I hear captain Michael Hooper post-match referencing poor discipline in rationalising a loss — that should have been a win.

  • Archie

    Thanks for the podcast.

    Some questions…

    1. Last year when B Barrett got yellow carded twice in a game (so red carded) for one of these failed intercept/‘deliberate’ slap downs last year… wasn’t most here calling him a cheat? Yet this week it’s different somehow?

    2. ‘If Kepu did that’… well he did do it… in a RWC Final! And the ref acknowleded it… yet no card was forthcoming. So why was that one OK for Aussie fans?

    3. ‘The Moody incident try killed the Tah’s momentum unfairly’… fair call. But surely then you have to acknowledge that the uncalled Hooper knock-on in the lead up to the first try and the Folau offside in the cross kick try unfairly kick started that momentum in the first place.

    Anyway thanks for the podcast. ‘Heaps’ entertaining :)

    • Huw Tindall

      2. that 2015 RWC was before the major crack down on contact above the shoulders. Was roughly in line with standards at the time.

      • Archie

        Sure, understand. Thanks for your reply Huw

  • Los Rojo Coala

    Another great pod guys… another incredibly depressing weekend for Australian rugby – but at least it’s in new and incredibly unpredictable ways so that’s kind of entertaining.

    Yes to everything… basically. Those yellow card laws are ruining the game. Also why can’t we have a centralised TMO system like they have in the NFL. The stuff in Tokyo was pretty funny though – the ref had to keep asking for a about five minutes to check if the pass was forward – eventually they showed the correct angle… and it was forward but then awarded it anyway. Brilliant.

    Re the The Force – I’m predicting a Twiggy assault from the West – from the burning rubble of Super Rugby, we’ll finally see the Trans-Tasman comp with a pacific team, Japan, Argentina – and Hawaii with Asian money and a bit from the US as well. Plus that $50 mil that Twiggy was talking about.


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

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