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Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 11:42 am  

rubber duckie User avatar
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Matt King's kitten wrote:
Getting a little tired of our continual search for the magic bullet former NRL half-back only for it fail and fail again. Would like to see either Patton or Dean fill that third HB role or if we are going to recruit, how about a return for Gaz O'Brien? Shouldn't have been allowed to leave in the first place imo.

Tough guy GOB, but over Ratchford?..and now over Ashton/Ratchford/Widdop?
No no no.
Keep going forward, improving, not returning to failings.
once a wire always a wire
Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 12:51 pm  
Dita's Slot Meter User avatar
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Considering Gareth O'Brien has an option says a lot about the quality of half backs in this country.

What's Joe Mellor upto, because he was twice the player GOB was/is?
And so you aim towards the sky,
And you'll rise high today,
Fly away, Far away,
Far from pain....
Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 1:48 pm  
Fantastic Mr Catpiss 100% League Network
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Dita's Slot Meter wrote:
Considering Gareth O'Brien has an option says a lot about the quality of half backs in this country.

What's Joe Mellor upto, because he was twice the player GOB was/is?


Waiting for his wages to be paid, by Toronto, like o brien is
Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 6:37 pm  
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The Wire halfback cycle:

1. Home grown halfback plays in the first team, is average at best. Fans get fed up and decide he isn't the answer and clamour for us to sign a halfback.
2. We sign an NRL halfback. Everyone gets excited, rubber duckie predicts we will "win the lot".
3. NRL halfback doesn't work out, fans claim they are fed up with bringing in Aussies that want to go back home and say we should give a home grown player a chance.
4. Repeat from 1.
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Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 6:53 pm  
Deus Dat Incrementum Cheeky half-back
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It's great signing big name aussie half backs but how many NRL halves have come here on 2-3 year deals and won super league (with that I don't count players like Tommy Lauluai or any of the Paul Brothers who were here for years)
So I get Blake Green and Lance Hohia but even that has an asterix against it.
I can't think of many others but list either british or long term NRL exports
Deacon
Williams
Lomax
Matty Smith
Burrow
Maguire
Tony Smith (not that one)
Henry Paul
Robbie Paul
Long
Martyn
Pryce
Etc etc

There is something in that.
Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 6:57 pm  
sally cinnamon User avatar
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We had a British halfback, who played at one club for longer than any of them, and was at least in the top two or three of that group in terms of talent, and never won SL once.
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Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 7:46 pm  
Deus Dat Incrementum Cheeky half-back
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Yes Sal a bit like Paul Cooke and Danny Brough. There are exceptions and also lots of good NRL halves that have come here for a year or two and not won it. Maybe it is pure coincidence.
I hope Widdop and Austin play the season out lift the SL trophy and they can go back to Sydney and shove my dodgy theory where the sun don't shine.
Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 8:18 pm  
sally cinnamon User avatar
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Deus Dat Incrementum wrote:
Yes Sal a bit like Paul Cooke and Danny Brough. There are exceptions and also lots of good NRL halves that have come here for a year or two and not won it. Maybe it is pure coincidence.
I hope Widdop and Austin play the season out lift the SL trophy and they can go back to Sydney and shove my dodgy theory where the sun don't shine.


I think it comes down to the fact that all those players you list were at one of four clubs: Wigan, Leeds, Saints and Bradford, which are the only clubs to have won SL. All of them had much stronger teams across all positions, and strong leaders on the field, which meant they weren't reliant on being carried by a star player in the halves.

I can't think of any team which was carried by a superstar playmaker in the halves which has won SL. Leeds would have been closest, with Iestyn Harris, but they lost the GF, and by the time they were winning, they had fine players in Burrow, McGuire and Sinfield at 13, but had a much stronger all round team. The other one where you could have made a case to being down to one superstar playmaker was Bradford with Henry Paul if they'd won in 1999. By the time they did win SL with HP, they were playing a power game and he was less decisive, he left after their first GF win and they replaced him with Brandon Costin and their level didn't drop at all as they won another two GFs.

Similarly with Saints, Long, Martyn and Pryce were very fine players but they didn't carry their team. Their most influential players were probably Cunningham and Sculthorpe, or maybe their props like Fairleigh / Britt.

It would have been interesting, if Paul Cooke and Richard Horne had come through at Leeds and McGuire and Burrow had come through at Hull, how many SL titles each would have got. My guess is, a lot for Cooke and Horne, none for McGuire and Burrow. Also if Briers had stayed at Saints, and replaced Tommy Martyn, how many SL titles would he have got. Again, I would guess a lot.

On the short-term NRL star signing, when we signed Allan Langer I remember it being between us and Wigan trying to get him. If Wigan under Endacott had had Langer instead of Willie Peters, would they have won SL? On the form he showed with us in 2000 especially, I think they would have been very difficult to beat. Imagine what he could have done with the runners they had outside him - his mate Renouf...Connolly, Radlinski, Robinson, Dallas...
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Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 8:59 pm  

rubber duckie User avatar
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You can’t conquer and sustain it in RL without a dominant pack...it’s a repetitive oversight folly of Wire since turn of the 80s.
Most of my criticism of Wire is always centred around this. Every time we’re linked with another back...I ask the same question...can he play prop.
I’ve started enough threads on here about props, hoping we’ve a secret board member amongst us, who’d finally take the poking.
once a wire always a wire
Re: Widdop back to NRL? Wed Aug 05, 2020 9:27 pm  
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As often proved at international level, top class half backs in the British game are as rare as rocking horse poop.

In fact, as was mentioned in another thread, backs in general are of a mediocre standard.

The only thing that connects the successful sides of the SL era is their ability to produce players in ALL positions (Bradford don't count as they made themselves bankrupt chasing the dream). Until we can produce a steady cycle of home grown players, then we will forever be chasing our tail.

The thing we have to learn is that our marquee signings (and even all our overseas players) should be icing on the cake and not players we are entirely dependent on, as we often seem to find ourselves.
And so you aim towards the sky,
And you'll rise high today,
Fly away, Far away,
Far from pain....
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