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REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

Discussion in 'Rugby League Forum' started by Berkeley_Eagle, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. Berkeley_Eagle

    Berkeley_Eagle Current Status: 24/7 Manly Fan 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS


    Looking back, forward



    02 Jan 09 by PETER PETERS
    http://manly-daily.whereilive.com.au/sport/story/looking-back-forward/

    In February the Sea Eagles start the amazing journey to try and go back-to-back in the Telstra Cup.

    And, for the first time in the club’s history, they won’t play in Australia before the start of the premiership.

    London is where the first tackle in anger will be made in 2009 for Des Hasler and his defending NRL champions.

    From there the side will travel north to Yorkshire and the city of Leeds for the World Club Challenge, before returning home to kick-off the domestic season - at the scene of last season’s record 40-0 grand-final win over the Melbourne Storm - against long-time rivals the Bulldogs.

    It has been and will continue to be an exciting time for the people of the peninsula, with the district’s pride and joy on top of the league world once more after being hours away from oblivion a few short years ago.

    So while the sun is shining and our glorious beaches are packed, let’s look back on the 2008 season and ahead to 2009 with some reflections and predictions.

    2008: REFLECTIONS

    Best Moment: No contest - Steve Menzies scoring his 180th and final try for Manly in the grand final. Sheer ecstasy for Beaver and one of the greatest fairytale endings in modern sport.

    Biggest Hit: Again a no-contest - Josh Perry, saying hello Brookie in his debut match in maroon and white, rocked Barrenjoey Lighthouse with his head-on collision of Sharks prop Ben Ross in round one.

    Coolest Act: Brett Stewart and Heath L’Estrange showing a sense of humour in the heat of the battle with their rock, paper, scissors act to decide who scored against the Dragons in the home semi.

    Exploded Myths: That Manly fans won’t travel or the Eagles can’t win away from home. The maroon and white in Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Canberra was simply stunning. Manly won all three games - the latter with 12 men when Adam Cuthbertson was sent off 10 minutes before half-time.

    Iron Man: Michael Robertson who has played every minute of every game for Manly since making his debut in round two in 2006 -79 games or 6320 minutes, and the last 80 were by far the best with three tries.

    Unluckiest Player: No risk - Michael Bani. The young flyer was in fabulous form - close to our best player- when knocked for six by injury. It opened the way for David “Wolfman” Williams to incredibly grab an Australian jersey.

    Cult Hero: “Wolfy.” A mind-boggling debut season in the big time. His howling under the full moon at Brookie after a semi-final try was priceless and the mob on the hill joined in.

    Redemption Award: Matt Orford’s Dally M Award and subsequent brilliant leadership and play in the final series. For a player who is constantly ridiculed by the media it was the ultimate “up yours”.

    Greatest Wins: The grand final, of course, but the 20-16 win over the Eels in round six at Parramatta Stadium, with no fit reserves on the bench, and the 31-18 victory over Canberra with 12 men flagged what a gutsy side we had.

    Worst Display: No risk, the 40-32 loss to South Sydney in round 23 at ANZ Stadium. It was embarrassing but it did the job - it was the last loss of the season.

    Six of the Best: In the last six games the Sea Eagles produced another gear and scored 220 points to 54, an average scoreline of 36-9 to be convincing champions.

    Is This a Dream?: The sea of people outside Manly Leagues Club close to midnight after the grand final - all in maroon and white and wanting to touch their heroes.

    Greatest Satisfaction: The number of young children - tiny tots - proudly wearing maroon and white to games all season.

    Flying the Flag: It is three months since the grand final and still the peninsula is rejoicing with hundreds of cars still sporting their club flags.

    Crystal Ball Award: Phil Gould at Steve Menzies farewell. “I can feel in this room that this team will win the premiership for the Beaver.”

    2009 PREDICTIONS:

    Chris Bailey to be valued member of the Sea Eagles with his size and versatility. He looks a player who will blossom under Hasler.

    Tony Williams to have a slow start but will build momentum from mid-season into a juggernaut on the edge of the ruck. T-Rex will prove a real handful for defences - especially close to the tryline. Mark him down for a dozen in his debut season.

    Brett Stewart to continue his amazing tryscoring career in the number one jersey and particularly at his beloved Brookvale Oval. “Snake” has scored 92 tries in 112 games - simply awesome.

    Sea Eagles to go back-to-back and emulate the Sea Eagles of 1972 and 1973.

    Matt Orford to finally crack NSW State of Origin selection.

    Jamie Lyon to continue his brilliant late season form of 2008 after his best off season in five years.

    William Hopoate to lay the foundations for a long and brilliant career. This kid could be one of the best local juniors since the great Menzies.

    Matt Ballin to continue his premiership rise and to becoming a 150-plus first grade player for Manly.

    Sunshine Coast Sea Eagles to become a great feeder club for Manly.

    The Sea Eagles to win the World Club Challenge against the Leeds Rhinos on March 1.

    Des Hasler to continue his gradual rise to become one of Manly’s greatest coaches.
     
  2. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    Excellent summation BE.
     
  3. willstyles

    willstyles Active Member

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    It's actually Zorba's thoughts, but yeah, there's some good ones in there.

    I agree with him that Jamie Lyon will blitz it. He looked so comfortable during the finals series. I think he's finally got the hang of playing in the halves!
     
  4. Berkeley_Eagle

    Berkeley_Eagle Current Status: 24/7 Manly Fan 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    it was a pretty good article
     
  5. eagle_predator

    eagle_predator Active Member

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    Great article BE


    Manly back to back premiers 08/09
     
  6. The Wheel

    The Wheel Well-Known Member

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    Interesting Zorbas thoughts on TRex & Hoppa jnr - could he play NRL this year?
     
  7. eagle_predator

    eagle_predator Active Member

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    Wheel I'm sure i read something that Hoppa jnr may get a start in the NRL in 09 ?
     
  8. Fluffy

    Fluffy Well-Known Member

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    If injuries hit i would give him the taste, a few of our guys have taken 10 - 20 games to finally find their feet in first grade - Glen Stewart for example
     
  9. PONTIAN SEA EAGLE

    PONTIAN SEA EAGLE Well-Known Member

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    Im happy with the redemption clause especially with what ox has gone through the last 3 years of criticism.
     
  10. CC_Eagle

    CC_Eagle Member

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    Put your house on it - Zorba to add another chin to his portfolio.
     
  11. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    It's interesting Gruggy just how deflated Zorba is these days.  He must have a leaky valve in his arse.  In a few years all there'll be are two feet and a head.  He sure has physically deteriorated since his playing days.  Check him out in the 1972 GF DVD. 
     
  12. CC_Eagle

    CC_Eagle Member

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    Agreed - Des should include him in some pre-season training for his own benefit. 400m sprints, sandune marathon's. The works!

    I struggled to believe the 72' GF Zorba and the 08' Zorba were the same when I saw the dvd.

    Generally speaking, do most ex- players of twenty years or more stay reasonably fit? Mobility and health allowing of course. Note, this does not include Beetson.
     
  13. ERNIE FOR NO7

    ERNIE FOR NO7 Active Member

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    A good summary. A few points I would like to make.

    Orford -  I don't think it matters how well  he plays, The NSW selectors won't pick him. This is disappointing for him but good for Manly.

    Bailey  - He is a very promising player and I believe will be the permanent 6 and this will allow Lyon to play in the centres where he plays best. Bailey runs great lines and the Stewarts and Watmough will have a feast backing him up. There is too much sideways in Jamie Lyon at 6.

    Hopoate  - I have heard that Hasler does not want to rush him into NRL. He may get some bench spots late in the year. They are restricting his training to 3 times a week so it doesn't interfere with his school and also he is not doing the NRL weight program. They have him on a modified program.


    The major concern for me that needs to be addressed is GOAL KICKING.  Are we going to concede points when we score in the corner by giving the Ox a kick where we all know excluding a howling wind behind him he can't kick the distance.
     
  14. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Ernie, Ox's kicking has been a concern for me for years.  His sideline kicks are pathetic.  It amazes me that someone else, (Lyon, Hall?) isn't told to take the penalty kicks and drop-outs.  Surely that skill can be taught.  Pick someone with big thighs and teach the skill.
     
  15. Cameron

    Cameron Cambo Premium Member

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    This is wat i like about des
    look at cutho he took his time with him as well.

    Im really excited about hoppa he looked so good in NYC but its still a big jump
     
  16. DSM5

    DSM5 Well-Known Member 2016 Tipping Competitor

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    Cliffy, do you honestly think Cuthbo will get a run on spot?  He may have trouble getting into the big boy squad at all imo.  What do you think of his 09 prospects?
     
  17. Guest

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    Re: REFLECTIONS & PREDICTIONS

    I thought that Tony Wiliams was a great goalkicker in the word cup.  He just didn't get enough opportunity.

    It sounds like Des will have Williams off the bench as an impact player on the fringe of the rucks and not in the centres as has been suggested. 

    Interesting that there is no mention of Jared Waerea-Hargreaves. 
     

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