I still can’t get over losing that bloody Test.
And neither can the idiots representing us.
Also, I had to move this back a day, so I could include a few results from the US Open.
NRL: Round 23
Canterbury 12 defeated Parramatta 6 @ Bankwest Stadium
Donnybrooks are very enjoyable to watch… when no-one ends up with a permanent brain injury.
Not that Brad Arthur enjoyed the Donnybrook in the 2nd Half, because Nathan Brown ended up going to the bin at a crucial time in the game, and he’s now been rubbed out for 2 games.
Although, Browny’s Nonna appeared to hate it more than Brad.
And then Reimis Smith destroyed any advantage the Dogs had, when he fired in a headbutt on Maika Sivo not even 2 minutes later, which was picked up by Belinda Sharpe, and he up on report and in the bin.
Sharpe by name, Sharpe by nature.
They both returned to the field, but even still, the pace was so frenetic that by the hour mark, both teams were visibly and physically buggered.
Which made perfect sense that the Dogs bagged the last try, beat the Eeels for the first time since 2016, and wrecked their Top 4 aspirations, especially on a weekend where Souths and Manly won.
The Dogs only need approximately 8 results to go their way in Round 24 to keep themselves in the finals race…
North Queensland 24 defeated Penrith 10 @ 1300Smiles Stadium
I’d like to put forth the argument that based on this game, the Cowboys should embrace a new era when they move to the new stadium next year, and wear pink as their primary strip.
Of course, they ironically thumped the team that used to be the Pink Panthers, and look at how they’ve gone since they ditched the pink.
It’s real, make it a thing Greeny.
Just the 4th win at the Willows all season for Cowboys fans, and hopefully this means that the Panthers don’t make the finals, because week after week, their attack is even worse than 60 Minutes without Jana Wendt.
Souths 22 defeated Brisbane 20 @ Suncorp Stadium
There’s never a dull moment with Anthony Seibold.
Last week he was comparing Darius Boyd’s halves performance to a hack like Luke Keary, and this week he had guns and shields in attack mode, in another verbal war with Souths assistant Jason Demetriou, who said teams figured out Souths’ attack in the 2018 finals, when Anthony was still the coach.
“‘I can’t believe we’re talking about Jason Demetriou…. He’s clearly missed a few stats, which is probably why he’s not a head coach yet.”
But when it came to the actual game on the field, WAYNE and his Rabbits had more than a few tricks up their sleeve to burn the Broncs.
Although I don’t think one of those tricks was James Roberts elbowing a defenseless Corey Oates, getting himself sin binned and suspended.
That’s not good tough footy, that’s just downright grubbery, and he was bloody lucky to only get two weeks for that.
Still, the game said more about Souths than it did about the Broncos- After looking like a skinned corpse for the last 2 months, they went on the road, their backs turned to the executioners, and they pulled out one of their best performances all season long.
And of course, it had to be none other than Damien Cook, who we thought had been figured out, only to remerge from The Burrow and put in a deadset blinder, and it was quite fitting that he was the one that put on the game winning tackle in the last minute.
You can’t deny that WAYNE had meticulously designed the whole damn week to go according to script… and after detailing his evil plan, the Souths boys applauded him.
I think Rusty would’ve enjoyed this more than the plastic chair he payed $1500 for to watch the Boomers take on Team USA.
Cronulla 42 defeated New Zealand 16 @ Shark Park
Y’know, the Sharks might just play finals now.
It can’t seem coincidental that since Shaun Johnson bemoaned the fact that he didn’t have a kicking coach (On the 15th of August), his goalkicking has been superb.
3/3 against Saints, and he was a perfect 7/7 against his old team on Saturday.
Absolute piece of piss for the Sharkies, and the Warriors season is vast reaching its end.
Wests Tigers 46 defeated Newcastle 4 @ Campbelltown
I can finally tell my kids that I watched Bradman play, and the Knights gave us a performance that reminded us all of The Oval in 1948.
I suppose the difference between the Knights and our greatest ever run greedy tightarse is that the Novocastrians actually scored.
This was a damning indictment on the Knights- The Tigers with their injuries, aren’t as good as the visitors on paper (If you’re comparing Origin reps), but they just completely smacked them stupid in execution and effort, and knocked them off for the second time in a month.
Joey tore shreds off the Knights’ management for sabotaging the club’s season, Kalyn Ponga (Or Nathan as Crash Craddock called him) is apparently apathetic for enjoying a smoothie, and Browny quite literally threatened to quit after this latest piss poor effort, and full credit to him, he’s really managed to put the Knights board in a bind.
What are they gonna do, sack him?
Sydney 34 defeated St George Illawarra 12 @ Kogarah
Trent Robinson was so confident in a win that he gave Latrell a night off, 1) Because he can, 2) Because his Chookies are that damn good, and 3) The Dragons are a pile of arse.
With the usual No.2 kicker Siosiua Taukeaiho on the bench to start the game, Cooper Cronk filled in for most of the goalkicking duties for the first time in a game since 2013, and he received the perfect mental preparation for a tough sideline kick, after a bloke from the crowd yelled out, “Just think it’s Cameron Smith’s head!.”
Cronk went 4/4 for the night.
That man could put THE COACH WHISPERER out of business.
Of course, I haven’t even mentioned the cross-field laser beam he delivered to Daniel Tupou to make it 28-nil.
It was also a good night for debutants- Billy Smith finally debuted for the Roosters and scored a try, and the bright spot for the Dragons was Tristan Sailor, son of Big Del himself (Who was hidden away in the stands), cutting through a few defenders and scoring the Dragons first try.
In the end, another cruise for the Roosters, and with the Raiders getting done on Sunday, it means the Red White & Bluesters have a chance to seal up 2nd spot with a win against Penrith at the SCG this weekend.
Which, based on this weekend, could get graphic.
Melbourne 24 defeated Gold Coast 8 @ AAMI Park
Phillip Sami is now known as ‘The Hound’.
BECAUSE HE CHASED DOWN THE FOX!
Amazing stuff- 24-8 down, the game’s done with a minute to go… and he still didn’t give up.
That’s an absolute highlight in the Tits’ ‘shart’ souffle of a season, which of course, can now officially be eaten with a wooden spoon.
Not much to say besides that- The Storm played like crap and trailed at the half, and then did the minimal amount of effort to get the job done against a spirited Tits outfit.
Manly 18 defeated Canberra 14 @ GIO Stadium
BEWARE THE UNDERDOG.
Joey Leilua submitted his entry for “Biggest Bonehead of the Week”, and there plenty of them, when he dropped the knees into Reuben Garrick after he scored a runaway try. leading to an 8 point try and putting the Sea Eagles up 12-10 after trailing 4-10- A lead the Silvertails never relinquished.
Of course, the refs completely missed Jack Gosiewski being offside for the play the ball, which led to Leilua firing in said boneheaded moment of the weekend, purely for the damage it did on the scoreboard.
That was so stupid, even Sticky Ricky didn’t defend it… And that’s saying something.
And then after the Silvertails survived the final set of the game, Addin Fonua-Blake gave a grand farewell to the Canberra crowd, by imitating a crying child, which was described as “Childish” by a crying Don Furner.
Absolute mad lad- AFN should’ve gone the whole hog and given them the two-fingered salute as well, and plus, Raiders fans have a hilarious record of copping it from players- Michael Ennis giving them the Viking clap after the 2016 Qualifying Final was deadset classic.
Of course, Des and the Dogs have a date with destiny on Saturday- A REMATCH WITH THE STORM.
Basketball: The Boomers vs Team USA Series
There was a big question as to how the organisers could go trying to prepare a hardwood court in the middle of Docklands, especially since they can’t even prepare a safe grass surface.
Still, that was the least of their problems, because as the events of the lead-up unfolded, the whole Boomers vs Team USA experiment became less about the spectacle, and more about a fantastic study in stupidity, not quite on the same level as the legendary Fyre Festival of 2017, that led to Billy McFarland currently enjoying 6 years in prison.
Sadly for some, that won’t quite happen in this case, although they probably will get refunds.
They had plastic bloody seats for the supposed $150 ground level view (The most Australian thing imaginable), and even Russell Crowe was going after them, after he paid $1500 a pop for seats that couldn’t even see the court.
He’ll have to sell some of his Beautiful Mind props to pay that off.
I’ll also be demanding a refund from SBS… I tuned in for 5 minutes, and those camera angles were so bad, even I couldn’t see Jaylen Brown and Kemba Walker jacking up 3s!
Of course, by Saturday, the seats were still crap, but the result was historically different.
BOOMERS 98 DEFEATED USA 94
WHO GIVES A RATS IF THAT WASN’T THE STRONGEST US TEAM EVER SEEN- THE BOOMERS BEAT THE SEPPOS FOR THE FIRST TIME IN 66 ATTEMPTS, DATING BACK TO 1964.
PATTY MILLS FOR PM, WE’RE OFF TO CHINA, AND GET ON THE BANDWAGON FOR TOKYO!
Yes, the Americans weren’t at full strength, but it should be pointed out that the Boomers weren’t at full strength either- No Simmons, Thon Maker, or Dante Exum.
A week out from the World Cup, for the first time in 13 years, the US Men’s Team have been beaten.
Tennis: US Open Day 1
Ash Barty was first-up on Arthur Ashe (Ash on Ashe) to begin the last major of the season, and she came up against the World No.80 Kazakh baseliner Zarina Diyas, who she played once before way back in 2014, during her ‘First’ stint in the WTA.
And it has to be said, the Barty Party we were hoping for was downright pathetic in that 1st Set.
The amount of simple ground strokes she was flaying long and wide were nothing short of utter crap, and her 1st Serve % was 25%.
She fell behind 5-0 in 20 minutes, and Diyas eventually won the set 6-1.
1 winner for a set… Diyas wasn’t doing a damn thing to win it, it was Ash leaking Unforced Errors.
But still, our World No.2 got back into the match, and interestingly, Ash had just 1 break point chance in the 2nd Set, at 4-3.
She duly converted, served out for a 6-3 2nd Set, and from there, it turned into the result that we were all expecting, as Barty’s power shone through, and she disposed of Diyas 6-2 in the decider.
Other than that, our women suffered a wipeout- Sam Stosur took on Ekatarina Alexandrova at the exact same time, and lost 6-1, 6-3, Daria Gavrilova was beaten 6-3 6-4 by Fiona Ferro, and Priscilla ‘Queen of the Desert’ Hon suffered the same fate as Sam- Beaten by a Russian.
Margarita Gasparyan won 7-6 (7-4), 6-4.
In a land that loves their Vodka, the Russians also enjoy a Margarita.
In the Men’s draw, Alex De Minaur took on Pierre Hughes Herbert, and despite dropping the 3rd set in a tiebreak, he got back on the horse and won 6-4, 6-2, 6-7 (8-6), 7-5
This is a true fact- If an Australian man doesn’t win the men’s singles (Which is a mathematical certainty), then this could be the first decade on record that an Australian male has not won a major singles title.
Fortunately, Sam and Ash have both won women’s major titles this decade, so we don’t have to broaden that out to ‘Australian player’.
Super Netball: Round 14 (Last Round of the Home & Away season)
If the finals machinations of the footy were weird, then if the end to the Super Netball season was any guide, bonus points can make things as chaotic as possible.
GWS 70 defeated West Coast 60 @ Qudos Bank Arena
Netball- The only sport in which GWS can defeat West Coast.
The 2nd and 3rd Quarters did the damage for the Giants, and the 2nd Quarter proved the most decisive- The ladies in orange won it 21-11, in what was one of the best performances in a quarter for any team this season.
As it turned out, despite starting the round in 4th, the win wasn’t enough to get the Giants into the Semis (That 18-16 final quarter to the Fever was rather inconsequential), and thus, their skipper Kim Green bows out a little earlier than the would have hoped for.
But look on the bright side, it was a win, and on the bright side for the Fever, their cesspit of a season is over.
NSW Swifts 64 defeated Queensland Firebirds 63 @ Qudos Bank Arena (Doubleheader)
When the Firebirds threw in a 19-12 2nd Quarter, only then did the Swifts realise, “Crap, we’ve got to show up”, after being repeatedly punished for poor discipline.
The 4th Quarter turned into a thriller, and barely a goal separated the teams for the majority of the quarter, and the Swifts took the lead 62-61 with 4 minutes to go, only for the Firebirds to land an intercept and score 2 goals, putting them back ahead 63-62.
The Swifts got their own intercept, and Sam Wallace levelled the scores with a minute to go, and Helen Housby came off the bench to shoot through what turned out to be the winning goal, and the Swifts killed the remaining time to win a thriller.
The cruel part is, if the Firebirds had held on and won, then they would have dodged the wooden spoon on at least percentage.
Still, the Swifts got the win eventually, but on the basis of this round, they haven’t got a hope of beating the Lightning, especially up on the Sunny Coast.
Sunshine Coast Lightning 58 defeated Adelaide Thunderbirds 37 @ USC Stadium
With the Swifts getting the job done against the Firebirds, all the Lightning had to win and claim at least 1 Bonus Point to pass the Swifts’ total of 79 and claim top spot and the minor premiership.
They did it with a leg in the air.
It’s worth noting that the Thunderbirds actually claimed the 1st Quarter bonus point 15-11… and after that, they didn’t reach double digits in any of the remaining 3 Quarters.
In fact, the 2nd Half was 34-15 to the Lightning, which was a completely fair reflection on how much the two-time champs belted the visitors- The The Thunderbirds didn’t even score a 4th Quarter goal until 6 minutes in.
Yep, the 3Peat is ON.
Collingwood 58 defeated Melbourne Vixens 47 @ Melbourne Arena
The Pies not only had to beat the Vixens, they had to snag 3 Bonus Points to beat GWS out of 4th spot on percentage.
And would’t you know it, they did, completing a season sweep of their big sister for the first time ever, which is quite the achievement, considering they hadn’t beaten the Vixens prior to this year!
With 3 wins and a draw to finish off the season, The Magpies get into the Semi Finals, on account of having a better percentage than GWS (102.2 beating 101.58), and guess what- Next Sunday, we’ve got ANOTHER Melbourne Derby!
FINAL HOME & AWAY LADDER
Racing: Group 1 Racing Returns
The Spring Carnival was ignited with the running of the Winx Stakes at Randwick, and without the mighty mare, that field is proof that traditional lead up races should never be promoted to Group Ones.
It featured the likes of Avilius, Verry Elleegant, Le Romain and Happy Clapper, and yet, it was this year’s Canberra Cup winner Samadoubt with Tim Clark aboard, who pulled the rug out and led all the way at 40-1 for the expat Kiwi Bjorn Baker.
It was Baker’s second Group 1 win since he crossed over to Australia way back in 2011, with the previous being Music Magnate back in the 2016 Doomben 10,000.
Of course, if you don’t know Bjorn, he once attempted the Dunk of Death… In that he nearly died making a slam dunk.
The most important thing of all- He made the dunk.
Golf: Adam Scott snags $1.9m USD…. for finishing 6th.
Yep, that’s a sign of how much was at stake in the Tour Championship at East Lake, and for the 2nd time in 4 years, it went to the greatest Northern Irishman since Georgie Best.
Rory McIlroy charged clear with a final round 66, finishing on 13 under to win by 4 shots to Xander Schauffele, and by winning the $60m USD FedEx Cup playoffs, he bagged the big cash prize of $15m USD (14 of which came in Thomas Jeffersons), the biggest payout in the history of professional golf.
Of course, Uncle Sam will enjoy that money more than Rory when the IRS come to visit.
Just highlighting how the money on offer, Schauffele bagged $5m for finishing 2nd, Justin Thomas and Brooks Koepka bagged $3.5m for finishing in a tie for 3rd, Paul Casey got $2.5m, and then there was Scotty in 6th with his $1.9m.
Everyone down to 8th earned 7 figures.
Just goes to show that it pays to have a really good mental game when you’re a professional golfer.