Almanac Rugby League – NRL Round 1, 2013: Souths vs Easts – SBW vs non-SBW

I’m not sure I like the Thursday night game, especially to kick off the season, but after a summer of mediocre cricket I’m not complaining. Souths are favorites for this one, but you wouldn’t know it from the hype that’s been cranking out of Bondi over the past few days and if I see one more Sonny Bill Williams promo I think I’m going to lose my mind.

But the whistle blows and the bullshit stops and thank the Lord, because footy is back. From the opening whistle the Roosters are on, and new boy James Maloney strolls through a gap bigger than Ben Barba’s bar tab to score. The Roosters look to be in great touch, until Souths string a few passes together and score a very easy try through the evergreen Nathan Merrit.

It’s a scratchy opening quarter, both teams are trying to find their rhythm. The defense is punishing, but the attack lacks fluency. Ill-discipline is killing the Roosters, and Merrit goes over again after a lobbed pass from Greg Inglis that Magic Johnson would have been proud to call his own.

If you were having a drink every time the commentators mentioned Sonny Bill Williams you’d be as blind as Ray Charles after thirty minutes. Sam Burgess runs straight over the top of the most hyped man in rugby league, and a few plays later Chris McQueen picks up the scraps from an Adam Reynolds kick and scores in the corner. 16-4 Souths. The first forty minutes feels more like four, and Souths look good at lemons.

I have no idea what they put in the water in Drewsbury, but I would pay handsomely for a sample. George Burgess is even bigger than older brother Sam, and he rampages over the line. The food bill for Mr and Mrs Burgess must have been astronomical. At 22-4, the climb is getting steeper by the second for the Roosters.

Reynolds cops a nasty elbow and he’s pissing out blood like the Roosters are pissing away this game. Michael Jennings slashes through, but muffs the pass to his supporting players. After a Mitch Aubusson bust, the Roosters try a little razzle, but can’t find the dazzle and Aiden Guerra is held up over the line, and soon after he gives away a penalty. His tenure in my fantasy team is already looking very shaky.

Burgess is an absolute wrecking machine tonight. He flattens Mitchell Pearce in a monster of a shot, and Junior Junior is down for the count. Souths put on a play down the left, and another wonderful touch from Inglis gives Merritt number three.  Reynolds kicks a boomer of a goal with bandages covering his eyes, and you can put the glasses down on this one, the Roosters hype machine has crash-landed.

Souths phone in the last 20 minutes, and the match peters out to its inevitable conclusion. The most notable feature is Michael Crocker’s Hells Angels moustache and a slick short ball from Frank-Paul Nuuasala to put Sonny Bill over the line. Souths have been very impressive in a powerful performance. The sounds of the match fade away and the blokish buffoonery of The Footy Show begins. The game is over, but a new season has just begun

Nathan Hindmarsh Medal

3- Sam Burgess

2- Greg Inglis

1 – George Burgess

Do me a massive favour and visit my blog Or follow me on Twitte @campo37. If you do, you will be given a free ticket to the next SBW “fight”. Enjoyment and product satisfaction is not guaranteed or possible.


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  1. Wonderful article, summed the game up nicely with plenty of witt and an obvious pure passion for the game. An enjoyable read. Keep it coming mate

  2. Luke Williams says

    Top piece of literature that a real rugby league player or supporter can relate to. Keep up the good work and I look forward to reading further instalments.

  3. Great article that is articulated well, love the personal flair throughout especially the Ray Charles pun.

  4. Great article and fantastic read, glad to see the SBW train derailed.

  5. Todd Slater says

    I’m glad i was at the game as it was a great atmosphere & ocassion. Thankfully i didn’t feel like Ray Charles after 20 mins, more like Stevie Wonder for me, as the cardinal & myrtle were ‘Hotter than July’, with GI the master blaster. Spidercam was a pain in the arse, more like blowie that couldn’t be swatted & SBW looked more like he was out for LBW as the Burgess boys welcomed him back from Japan with a bit koonichiwa from Redfern. Reynolds let the ‘turnstile’ (Pearce) know that he likes the sound & colour of a blue jersey in june & July too & that ‘turnstile’ may have to do a bit more to hang onto his this year. Meanwhile the forwards for the cardinal & myrtle did a great impersonation of the\at long forgotten bunnies boy band from the late 80’s which featured the Rampling brothers, Bundy Davidison, Ian Roberts, Michael Andrews, Pauly Roberts & others. Retro rabbits ? Suddenly 2013 feels oh so 1989. Who needs Smiths Crisps on the jersey when we now have the Star baby the Stars !

  6. Joel Horne says

    Top Story

  7. That was awful. Swearing and having a sledge at Barba. Well done, gronk.

  8. Good work mate; look forward to the coverage; 10 times more professional than that tard gould.

    Keep at condemning the heir apparent role models that piss away their careers too.


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