Wednesday, 29 September 2021

NOT The Footy Show Episode 248: 2021 NRL Grand Final Preview Podcast

Penrith v Souths for all the marbles in 2021 
Released September 29, 2021 

It's Grand Final time!

Join Robb Cox and Warrick Nicolson for NOT The Footy Show Episode 248 and our 2021 NRL Grand Final Preview as the Penrith Panthers take on the South Sydney Rabbitohs at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane. 

Is it time for the Ivan Cleary's Panthers to deliver on two superb seasons with a Premiership or will Uncle Benny steer South Sydney to his 8th win in 10 Grand Finals and leave Redfern as a legendary Rabbitoh? 

Coxsmith and Waz go through each team in detail and pick our Winner/Score, First Tryscorer and Clive Churchill Medallist. 

We may have a supplemental GF podcast later in the week with some great Grand Final moments but that is TBC. 

Enjoy
🔘  Stream the New Podcast
🔘  Watch the Show on YouTube
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.

We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.

Tuesday, 28 September 2021

Rugby League History: Five Grand Finals in a row for Glenn Lazarus

FIVE GRAND FINALS IN A ROW FOR LAZZO...
Published September 28, 2021 
Between 1989 and 1993, Glenn Lazarus played in five consecutive Grand Finals - a record unmatched during the Winfield Cup Era of 1982-95.
He won Premierships in 1989 and 1990 with the Canberra Raiders, was runner-up in 1991 as Canberra just fell short of a three-peat, and then after signing with the Brisbane Broncos, won back to back Premierships in 1992 and 1993.
Lazarus in the 1989 Grand Final against Balmain - won 19-14 by the Raiders.
Lazarus in the 1990 Grand Final against Penrith - won 18-14 by the Raiders.
Lazarus in the 1991 Grand Final against Penrith - the Raiders lost 19-12.
Lazarus in the 1992 Grand Final against St George - won 28-8 by the Broncos.
Lazarus in the 1993 Grand Final against St George - won 14-6 by the Broncos.
Lazarus started at prop in all five Grand Finals, and played the 1991 decider with a sternum injury that would have kept him out of almost any other match.
What is telling about Lazarus is if you asked someone who watched him play in the four Grand Finals he played without a serious injury, they would have trouble picking his best performance from amongst them. He was immense in all four Premiership wins and despite missing Royce Simmons one on one for the opening try of the 1991 Grand Final, his effort and ability to play through pain in that game was courageous.
He actually came very close to playing in six Grand Finals in his first seven seasons, as he had made his debut for the Raiders late in 1987 as a 21 year old (featuring in two semi-finals), and sat on the bench unused for the Grand Final Canberra lost to Manly.
Lazarus standing with his teammates after the 1987 Grand Final against Manly - the Raiders lost 18-8 and he never saw action on the field.
Only one other player* has played in four straight Grand Finals during the Winfield Cup era - do you know who it is?

Answer below.

The next best consecutive Grand Final streak for an individual player in the Winfield Cup era sits at four in a row, dominated unsurprisingly by a host of Parramatta, Canterbury and Canberra players. 
All three teams made at least three Grand Finals in a row during the Winfield Cup era, and although Parramatta won the 1981 Grand Final it is technically not in the designated era that we are addressing here (mainly as this content is for The Winfield Cup Facebook page which celebrates everything from 1982-95).
All three clubs also made Grand Finals four times in a five year span in the era - Canterbury 1984-85-86 and 1988, Parramatta 1982-83-84 and 1986, Canberra 1987 and 1989-90-91.
But no one player was able to match Glenn Lazarus for consecutive Grand Finals in this wonderful era of Rugby League, and this is true even if you include the 1981 Grand Final for those Parramatta players who would have had streaks of four in a row.
Lazarus would miss the 1997 Super League Grand Final due to injury in his last year at the Broncos. But after signing with the Melbourne Storm in 1998, he would retire from Rugby League by playing in his sixth Grand Final in 1999 as the Storm defeated those poor Dragons 20-18.
This gave Lazarus the most enviable Grand Final record of five Premierships in six Grand Finals across his 254 game career. And with a bit of luck on the selection/injury front he might have played in EIGHT in his thirteen season run in First Grade.
He also had a wonderful representative career with NSW City, NSW Country, NSW and Australia but more on that another time.
What a remarkable Grand Final legacy from the Brick with Eyes, unquestionably the best front rower I've seen play Rugby League from the Winfield Cup era onwards. 
📊 The player with four consecutive Grand Finals during the Winfield Cup era was David Barnhill.
The second rower began his career at Canberra and appeared the 1990 Grand Final off the bench and then started in the 1991 Grand Final. At the end of 1991 he signed with St George and started in back to back Grand Final losses in 1992 and 1993. 
*This consecutive Grand Final stat is correct as we understand it via Rugby League Project for the Winfield Cup Era of 1982-95, but we could have interpreted the data wrong and are happy to be corrected.
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.

We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.

Saturday, 25 September 2021

NOT The Footy Show Episode 247: Preliminary Finals Recap Podcast

Souths and Penrith dispatch Manly and Melbourne. 
Released September 25, 2021 

J
oin Robb Cox and Warrick Nicolson for NOT The Footy Show Episode 247 as we recap both 2021 NRL Preliminary Finals - Souths 36 def. Manly 16 and Penrith 10 def. Melbourne 6. 

That leaves us with a Rabbitohs v Panthers Grand Final next Sunday October 3 at Suncorp Stadium and we review how the Penrith and Souths did the business in the Prelims... and some things the NRL simply can't keep getting wrong with rule enforcement. 

We will record again Tuesday night for our full GF Preview. 

Enjoy. 
🔘  Stream the New Podcast
🔘  Watch the Show on YouTube
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.

We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.

Thursday, 23 September 2021

NOT The Footy Show Episode 246: Preliminary Finals Preview Podcast

NRL Finals Week 3 Preview Podcast
Released September 23, 2021 

J
oin Robb Cox and Warrick Nicolson for NOT The Footy Show Episode 246 as we preview the 2021 NRL Preliminary Finals - Souths v Manly and Melbourne v Penrith.

Apart from our picks of who makes the Grand Final, we touch on Michael Maguire surviving at the Tigers (for another 12 months of speculation) and wonder what Tim Sheens will be able to accomplish once he arrives. We also quickly discuss Billy Slater's apparent two year contract to coach QLD from 2022.

We will record again Saturday night or Sunday arvo.

Enjoy.  
🔘  Stream the New Podcast
🔘  Watch the Show on YouTube
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.

We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.

Monday, 20 September 2021

Rugby League History: Ellery Hanley's magical run with the Balmain Tigers in 1988

ELLERY ALMOST COMPLETES THE FAIRY TALE...
Published September 20, 2021 
In July 1988, 27 year old Englishman Ellery Hanley joined a Balmain Tigers team sitting in 7th spot after 19 Rounds of the NSWRL Premiership.
The Tigers had an impressive 13-6 record but were grouped with 3 other teams on 26 points (Canberra, Manly and Brisbane but they were all only 2 points from the Top 3 teams on 28 points) and had the least impressive differential (+53) of all 7 teams in the running for the Final Five with 3 games left.
So the Tigers, despite producing fine campaign with 13 wins already, were up against it with games left against Manly 5th, Penrith 2nd and Brisbane 6th to close out the regular season... and they needed a spark.
Enter Ellery.
Hanley had been touring Australia in June/July with the Great Britain side that had lost the Ashes Series 2-1, and he had just played for the Rest of the World against Australia (losing 22-10) on July 27th when he signed a deal with play with Balmain the following weekend.
Losing his debut on July 31st to Manly 8-4 at Brookvale Oval in Round 20, Hanley then propelled Balmain to the Grand Final with 6 straight wins against contending teams over the next two months - with every single game a win or go home scenario for the Tigers.
1988 NSWRL Premiership Regular Season 
✅ ▪️ Round 21 - Balmain 16 def. Penrith 14 at Leichhardt (this pitted 7th v 2nd and despite the win Balmain stayed in 7th). 
✅ ▪️ Round 22 - Balmain 20 def. Brisbane 10 at Leichhardt (7th v 6th but this result eliminated Brisbane from the congested playoff scenario, and clinched a spot in the 5th place playoff for Balmain who technically ran 6th).
1988 Winfield Cup Finals Series
✅ ▪️ Playoff for 5th - Balmain 28 def. Penrith 8 at Parramatta (Penrith had been 3rd after 21 rounds but fell to 5th with back to back losses to Balmain and Manly and the Tigers sent them packing!).
✅ ▪️ Minor Preliminary Semi Final - Balmain 16 def. Manly 6 at SFS (Manly were defending Premiers and had finished 4th on differential).
✅ ▪️ Minor Semi Final - Balmain 14 def. Canberra 6 at SFS (Canberra were Grand Finalists in 1987 and had actually finished on 30 points like Balmain but a superior differential handed them 3rd spot, but they'd been beaten by Canterbury in extra time of the Major Prelim the weekend before).
✅ ▪️ Preliminary Final - Balmain 9 def. Cronulla 2 at SFS (Cronulla had won the Minor Premiership but had been beaten 26-8 by Canterbury in the Major Semi the weekend before).
And in the space of 6 weeks - the Balmain Tigers on the back of Hanley had reached the 1988 Winfield Cup Grand Final and would face the Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs.
Sadly for Balmain and the dynamic Hanley, who had scored a try in every Finals match Balmain had played to this point, he was knocked out in the 1st half of the decider against Canterbury (not so subtly by Terry Lamb well after he off-loaded the ball for those unfamiliar with the incident).
Without their talisman healthy, the Tigers' fairytale run at a Winfield Cup ended in a 24-12 defeat at the hands of the Bulldogs in the first Grand Final at the Sydney Football Stadium. 
Although the Premiership had eluded them, the Tigers had captured support from legions of non-Balmain Rugby League fans with their incredible run to the biggest game of the 1988 season.
Hanley would return to the NSWRL Premiership in 1989 but this time with the Western Suburbs Magpies after they offered a massive short term deal to him and fellow Englishmen Garry Schofield and Kelvin Skerrett.
Despite not staying a Tiger, Hanley had firmly entrenched himself into the hearts of the black and gold faithful with his magical run of match-winning form in August and September of 1988.
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.

We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.

Sunday, 19 September 2021

NOT The Footy Show Episode 245: Semi Finals Review Podcast

Penrith and Manly advance, as season ends for Eels and Roosters
Released September 19, 2021 

J
oin Robb Cox and Warrick Nicolson for NOT The Footy Show Episode 245 as we review the Semi Final victories by Penrith and Manly in the second weekend of the 2021 NRL Finals.

The apparent storing of free interchanges is the first topic we dive into, as is the failure of Parramatta to get past the Semi Final stage under Brad Arthur. And of course we break down in detail Penrith's 8-6 win over a gallant Parramatta, and Manly's 42-6 walk in the park against the sticky-taped together Roosters. The Storm and Rabbitohs now await the winners in the Prelims.

Coxsmith and Waz finish the Podcast with a farewell to Josh Morris. 

Enjoy.  
🔘  Stream the New Podcast
🔘  Watch the Show on YouTube
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.
We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.

Wednesday, 15 September 2021

NOT The Footy Show Episode 244: NRL Finals Week 2 Preview Podcast

Uncle Benny schools Ivan - Semi Finals Preview
Released September 15, 2021 

J
oin Robb Cox and Warrick Nicolson for NOT The Footy Show Episode 244 and their preview of the Semi Finals stage of the 2021 NRL Finals Series - with Manly facing Easts and Penrith taking on Parramatta. 

We discuss Ivan Cleary getting schooled by Wayne Bennett as Souths upset Penrith, and review Melbourne handing Manly a reality check. We also talk about how the Roosters and Eels did enough to send the Titans and Knights packing in Week 1. 

Coxsmith and Waz finish the Podcast touching on Billy Slater's apparent reluctance to jump on the QLD Origin job and Mary McGregor taking an assistant coach role with the NSW Blues. And... who wants Adam Elliott now Gus doesn't? 

Enjoy.  
🔘  Download the mp3 version
🔘  Stream the New Podcast

🔘  Watch the Show on YouTube
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.
We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.

Tuesday, 14 September 2021

Rugby League History: The 1987 Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles

MANLY BREAK THROUGH IN 1987.
Published September 14, 2021 
📷 The '87 Manly Warringah Sea Eagles.
The Sea Eagles had been the 'almost team' of the 1980s heading into the season, having lost two Grand Finals in '82 and '83 and making the Finals in '81, '84 and '86 (and losing a playoff for 5th to Penrith in '85).

Coach Bob Fulton (along with Manly supremo Ken Arthurson) had meticulously put together this talented Manly roster since arriving in 1983 and everything fell into place in 1987.
The team entered the season featuring a host of current or former Australian representative stars in captain Paul Vautin, Noel Cleal, Michael O'Connor, Chris Close, Des Hasler and Dale Shearer, as well as Cliff Lyons and Phil Daley who would make their NSW debuts in 1987 and Country Origin players Ron Gibbs and Mal Cochrane. Centre Darrell Williams was also a mainstay in the New Zealand test team.

After 26 Rounds, the Sea Eagles would finish as clear Minor Premiers with 18 wins, 5 losses and a draw from their 24 games to finish on 41 points (with 2 byes), a full 6 points ahead of Easts in 2nd place.

A great opening month had them sitting in 3rd with 3 wins and a draw, but after beating the defending Premiers Parramatta 26-4 in Round 4, Manly suffered a run of losses against Canterbury (18-6), Souths (28-18) and Cronulla (18-13) to find themselves in 6th spot.

That was as low as they would fall on the ladder in 1987. From Round 9 - Manly put together an utterly dominant 12 match winning streak (claiming 1st spot by Round 15), and despite losses to Easts (26-16) in Round 22 and Norths (32-30) in Round 25, no one got close to shaking Manly's grip on the Minor Premiership.

With the Finals just around the corner, Paul Vautin's Manly side had tasted defeat just 5 times and only Easts (who had beaten Manly in Round 22) were considered any real threat to Manly's Premiership claim.

Manly's Top Tryscorer for the season was 22 year old fullback/centre Dale Shearer who crossed for 13 tries (his best total in First Grade) but only Michael O'Connor with 11 tries, also reached double figures despite the Sea Eagles scoring 553 points during the season.
If you want to a good trivia night question, then the correct answer for Manly's top pointscorer during the 1987 season is Mal Cochrane with 138 points (5 Tries and 59 goals) and not O'Connor who had 122 points, as he didn't take over as the regular goalkicker until late in the season.
Manly used 30 players across the 26 games they played - all stats courtesy of Rugby League Project.
When September arrived, as Minor Premiers Manly had a week off and they would watch Easts put Canberra away 25-16 in the Major Preliminary Semi Final. Then on September 13th Manly would grind out a 10-6 win over the Chooks in the Major Semi Final to launch themselves into their 3rd Grand Final of the decade.
Their opponents for the September 27th Grand Final would be Canberra and not Easts (the Raiders won the Preliminary Final 32-24) and this meant Manly were made clear favourites, having defeated Canberra twice during the season - 18-10 at Seiffert Oval in Round 10 and 20-18 at Brookvale Oval in Round 23.

Canberra had welcomed Mal Meninga back from a broken arm late in the season but Manly also had an ace re-joining their side for the big one in English import Kevin Ward
Ward had played against Australia in the 1986 Ashes Series and Manly signed him to a contract mid-season in 1987. He is considered one of the best English imports the Australian game has seen, despite playing all of 15 games in First Grade (11 in 1987 and 4 in 1988 - all with Manly). Ward had arrived in Australia in late May in time for a Round 13 debut against Balmain and Manly went onto win 7 straight games with the Englishman in the lineup. However leading into September he had missed 3 straight games with Mark Pocock doing an admirable job filling in but he was back for the Grand Final.

Making way from the Major Semi Final win over Easts were bench players Jeremy Ticehurst, Ian Gately and Owen Cunningham, replaced by Ward (who started for Pocock, who went to the bench), and utility Paul Shaw. There would be no room for veteran Chris Close in First Grade come September and he would finish his Manly career playing in the reserve grade decider on the same day.
1987 Winfield Cup Grand Final Teams.
Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles: 
D Shearer, D Ronson, D Williams, M O'Connor, S Davis, C Lyons, D Hasler, P Daley, M Cochrane, K Ward, R Gibbs, N Cleal, P Vautin (c). M Pocock, P Shaw. Coach: B Fulton.
Canberra Raiders: 
G Belcher, C Kinna, P Jackson, M Meninga, M Corkery, C O'Sullivan, I Henjak, B Todd, S Walters, S Backo, G Coyne, A Gilbert, D Lance (c). K Walters, T Regan. Coaches: W Bennett/Don Furner.

The game was played on what is remembered as a stinking hot Sunday afternoon in late September, with Manly running out 18-8 winners on the back of a powerful display from their forwards (particularly Ward who some consider to be unlucky not to win the Clive Churchill Medal) and the mercurial performance of Cliff Lyons at five-eighth.
Lyons played with 'spiders on him', toying with the Canberra edge defence all afternoon. He scored a fine individual try from a scrum to open the scoring in the 1st half and would be awarded the Clive Churchill Medal.

Michael O'Connor's 2nd half try off a Dale Shearer cross kick which gave Manly a 16-2 lead remains subject to much debate (Manly lifer and commentator Rex Mossop called winger David Ronson off-side in the call and no replay shows either player on or off-side on a wide shot) and despite Canberra scoring a try through Chris O'Sullivan late in the game, the Winfield Cup was Manly's.
Coach Fulton would breakthrough for his first Premiership as a First Grade coach, having fallen short with Eastern Suburbs in 1980 and Manly in 1983.

The vision of captain Paul Vautin being chaired off raising his fist in celebration is iconic. 
It encapsulated his relief and joy, as his beloved Sea Eagles finally broke through for their first Winfield Cup and first Premiership since 1978.
Full Time:
Manly 18 (C Lyons, M O'Connor Tries; M O'Connor 5/5 Goals)
defeated
Canberra 8 (C O'Sullivan Try; M Meninga 1/1, G Belcher 1/1 Goals)
Sunday September 27th, 1987 at the SCG - Crowd: 50,201. Referee: M Stone.
What are your memories of the 1987 Winfield Cup?
==
You can subscribe to the 
NOT The Footy Show Podcast on Apple Podcasts, SpotifyAmazon Music and watch each episode on our YouTube Channel.
We are also on Instagram so please give us a follow @notthefootyshow 
==
Enjoy great moments from the Winfield Cup Era (1982-95) on Facebook and Twitter.