State of Origin I


Why can’t we just all get along?

Game one is done and dusted and if you’re from south of the border, you’re a happy chappy. If you’re a Queenslander (or have militant QLD’er friends, like Paul does), you’re wondering why the hell we’re not allowed to have a drawn game in a best of three series.

The build-up to the St’Origin was marred by the late night antics of a few NSW players, but on the night a healthy crowd of over 65,000 showed up to cheer on their team. The game started off just the way I remember old games, with QLD soaking up a ton of NSW pressure and having problems getting out of their own half.

One thing that was different this year was the call on Triple J by Roy & HG. I don’t know if they’re losing it, or whether there are just no real personalities left in rugby league. My bet is on the latter. Where in past years there was Glenn ‘the brick with eyes’ Lazarus, Backdoor Benny Elias, Squirrel Gripper Martin Bella, Cumquat Walters, and Andrew Ettinghorsmmmmmgrhmm, this year the best they could do was Dish-head Price and Freddy Prince Jr.

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Anyway, for all that, it was a close and tense game with the lead see-sawing throughout. Queensland scored two tries (successes) to one, but could not convert their extra points and it cost them in the end. NSW had enough poise in extra time to kick a ‘golden point’ field goal and end the game winners 9-8.

Now I want to get one my soap box for a wee bit and ask why there has to be a result at the end of each game? After 80 minutes those players are dead on their feet after giving everything. Extra time just becomes a groggy shambles of players doing their best to get into position for a field goal attempt. There’s no attacking footy. While it’s exciting when they keep missing the field goals, it’s not exactly a highlight of the game. When you consider that it’s a best of three series, surely having the first one a draw makes the other two games vitally important. There’s no chance of a dead rubber – a game that doesn’t count. That can only add to the excitement and build up to the remaining games. If NSW were to win in Brisbane in three weeks, then the final game only matters as far as the stats go. The contest itself will be over.

Although I must admit I’m biased because QLD lost, I still believe that a draw would have been a better result for the series and for rugby league, and let’s face it, league needs all the help it can get right now.

By the end of the night, The People were exhausted and feeling rather ill after ingesting a combination of beer, vegetarian pizza and Allen’s lollies.