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Manly stay in the hunt with Bani Army's support -- SMH

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by CliffyIsGod, Sep 19, 2007.

  1. CliffyIsGod

    CliffyIsGod Well-Known Member

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    Manly stay in the hunt with Bani Army's support -- SMH

    [​IMG]
    If Michael Bani takes the field against the Cowboys on Saturday night, he will have a pocket of North Queensland in his corner. About 300 people, to be more specific - the inhabitants of the tiny Torres Strait Island of Mabuiag, where Bani's life was the sea, not the Sea Eagles.

    Bani, the likely starter on the Manly right wing should Chris Hicks succumb - as expected - to an ankle injury, will complete a remarkable rise should he play, from fisherman to football star.

    Just two years ago, Bani's days were spent as a hunter on the island - off the northern tip of mainland Queensland - not for the thrill of the chase but so his family could eat at night.

    "We went hunting for sea turtles, dugongs, crayfish and fish," Bani said yesterday. "Most of our food comes from the sea, so that's where we'd go out during the day to get meals for the family.

    "We made traditional spears, or we just used rope to catch the turtles.

    "I've been doing that ever since I could walk. Grandad used to just take us out and chuck us in the water, just to make us get used to it, take our fear away. Then, as we grew up, that's when we learnt how to really dive and actually catch the seafood we were looking for."

    Bani, 23, describes being in the sea as "second nature", but the way he has adapted to the NRL has suggested he's not out of place on the flanks of an NRL team.

    He scored a try on debut against the Warriors in round 24; the following week against St George Illawarra, he made a remarkable bust directly from a Dragons kick-off which resulted in a Brett Stewart try. All from someone who, according to the story, saw his first McDonald's restaurant a year ago.

    That was in Bundaberg, where Bani had decided to make good with his obvious footballing talents, which had always been evident - while playing with the likes of Queensland prop Nate Myles and young Cowboys Jamie Frizzo and Ryan Bartlett at boarding school in Cairns and against North Queensland centre Ashley Graham in an under-15 grand final - but never properly harvested.

    His time in Bundaberg was meant to be a stopover before heading to Brisbane - "a building block to get to know what life was like away from home, and what it's like in the big smoke" - however, his development accelerated, as you'd expect for a winger.

    The scout who tipped Noel Cleal into Andrew Ryan and Jamie Lyon, and thus helped bring the pair to Parramatta, told the same man about Bani. Cleal, now Manly's recruiting chief, watched the DVD and brought the player to Sydney, thinking so much of his talent that he offered him a place to stay at his home as well, as he did with Lyon at Parramatta. Now he's playing in the same back line as Lyon.

    "I made the most of my time here, my opportunities … I've never looked back," Bani said. "I just did what I was asked to do, and they were happy about it. It's been more than I could have asked for. I'm a long way from home and it's a big change. But I've really adapted to it well."

    Most of the time. There have been a few glitches, notably a bout of homesickness mid-season which led to a couple of trips to Cairns to see his family, as well as the small issue of Bani to this day running on Torres Strait time, not Des Hasler training time.

    "That's one of the things I've been trying to get used to - moving on time," he said. "For the hunters, the men, time doesn't exist. We just live through what nature brings to us, and that's the sun and the moon and the stars. That's how we moved through the day.

    "It's been different, trying to adapt to that [new] lifestyle, moving on time. Most times, I rock up here [to training] late. I just can't get used to it."

    He'll have to, however. The Sea Eagles have extended Bani's contract, meaning even if he does not play this Saturday night, he is likely to have plenty more chances.

    "I really can't describe in words how I feel … about me being down here. It's just a blessing to be given an opportunity like this."

    "I made the most of my time here, my opportunities … I've never looked back," Bani said. "I just did what I was asked to do, and they were happy about it. It's been more than I could have asked for. I'm a long way from home and it's a big change. But I've really adapted to it well."

    Most of the time. There have been a few glitches, notably a bout of homesickness mid-season which led to a couple of trips to Cairns to see his family, as well as the small issue of Bani to this day running on Torres Strait time, not Des Hasler training time.

    "That's one of the things I've been trying to get used to - moving on time," he said. "For the hunters, the men, time doesn't exist. We just live through what nature brings to us, and that's the sun and the moon and the stars. That's how we moved through the day.

    "It's been different, trying to adapt to that [new] lifestyle, moving on time. Most times, I rock up here [to training] late. I just can't get used to it."

    He'll have to, however. The Sea Eagles have extended Bani's contract, meaning even if he does not play this Saturday night, he is likely to have plenty more chances.

    "I really can't describe in words how I feel … about me being down here. It's just a blessing to be given an opportunity like this."

    "I made the most of my time here, my opportunities … I've never looked back," Bani said. "I just did what I was asked to do, and they were happy about it. It's been more than I could have asked for. I'm a long way from home and it's a big change. But I've really adapted to it well."

    Most of the time. There have been a few glitches, notably a bout of homesickness mid-season which led to a couple of trips to Cairns to see his family, as well as the small issue of Bani to this day running on Torres Strait time, not Des Hasler training time.

    "That's one of the things I've been trying to get used to - moving on time," he said. "For the hunters, the men, time doesn't exist. We just live through what nature brings to us, and that's the sun and the moon and the stars. That's how we moved through the day.

    "It's been different, trying to adapt to that [new] lifestyle, moving on time. Most times, I rock up here [to training] late. I just can't get used to it."

    He'll have to, however. The Sea Eagles have extended Bani's contract, meaning even if he does not play this Saturday night, he is likely to have plenty more chances.

    "I really can't describe in words how I feel … about me being down here. It's just a blessing to be given an opportunity like this."


    "I made the most of my time here, my opportunities … I've never looked back," Bani said. "I just did what I was asked to do, and they were happy about it. It's been more than I could have asked for. I'm a long way from home and it's a big change. But I've really adapted to it well."

    Most of the time. There have been a few glitches, notably a bout of homesickness mid-season which led to a couple of trips to Cairns to see his family, as well as the small issue of Bani to this day running on Torres Strait time, not Des Hasler training time.

    "That's one of the things I've been trying to get used to - moving on time," he said. "For the hunters, the men, time doesn't exist. We just live through what nature brings to us, and that's the sun and the moon and the stars. That's how we moved through the day.

    "It's been different, trying to adapt to that [new] lifestyle, moving on time. Most times, I rock up here [to training] late. I just can't get used to it."

    He'll have to, however. The Sea Eagles have extended Bani's contract, meaning even if he does not play this Saturday night, he is likely to have plenty more chances.

    "I really can't describe in words how I feel … about me being down here. It's just a blessing to be given an opportunity like this."
     
  2. The Gronk

    The Gronk Well-Known Member

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    Manly stay in the hunt with Bani Army's support -- SMH

    great article but I think he has a habit of repeating himself ;)
     
  3. Canteen Worker

    Canteen Worker Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Manly stay in the hunt with Bani Army's support -- SMH

    Great article but I think he has a habit of repeating himself :lol: :lol:
     
  4. The Gronk

    The Gronk Well-Known Member

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    Manly stay in the hunt with Bani Army's support -- SMH

    you can say that again
     
  5. Fluffy

    Fluffy Well-Known Member

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    Manly stay in the hunt with Bani Army's support -- SMH

    we are the bani army

    the mighty bani army
     

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