Some teams are coming back to the field, some are surging on. I know it’s early on still, but the Sharks are just two games away from the top 8!

Here are this weeks power rankings.

16. Cronulla- What a win. No Carney. No worries. This team proved they can win without tattoos. The Sharks win even prompted a designer in New York to bring out the below which appeared all over social media in the big apple.


15. Newcastle (Down 1)- Hung tough all game against the heavy weights of the comp so far. A great bounce back from last week, the two points evaded them like a gold medal for poor old Wilson Kipketer.

14. Canberra (Down 2)- The word ‘consistent’ mustn’t be known in Canberra, as they have none of it. Go to the dictionary fellas and try and find what it means. A shocking performance from a team with so much talent.

13. New Zealand- Um, did they beat the Storm at home? One of the best wins they’ve ever had. This ANZAC rivalry was won by the boys across the ditch in a game which would have had a similar following I’m sure, to the Collingwood V Essendon game…

12. North Queensland (Up 3)- Is this the sign the real Cowboys are about to start playing footy, finally? They need to win some more games before JT heads off for Origin duty though.

11. Melbourne- Something’s missing. The Storm need to find it fast. Losing their big 3 in a few weeks won’t help their cause. It’s time to push the panic button, because they’ll be missing more shortly.

10. Parramatta (Down 4)- Thud. Crash. Bang. That was the sound of the Eels crashing back to reality.

9. St George (Down 1)- This team peaked in March. Not a great time to peak when most premierships are won between August- October.

8. Wests Tigers (Down 3)- Meow. These baby maggies had their wings clipped and rolled over like baby pussy cats.

7. Penrith- They might claim obstruction. But they were obstructed by a Sharks team who wanted a win desperately!

6. Souths (Up 5)- What can you say. A thriller, Michael Jackson would have been proud of. No words can describe GI. Is this the man to lead them to “Glory glory to South Sydney”?


5. Roosters (Up 4)- Can you hear that click? That’s the noise of the Roosters clicking back into premiership mode gear.

4. Brisbane (Down 1)- They didn’t lose easily. It took a super human effort to beat them. Tight games are the ones you need to win though. These two points may be costly in September. If you haven’t seen the try, here it is again. If you have seen it, you can watch it over and over and over again.


3. Gold Coast (Up 1)- These are mighty Titans and possibly the best Titans to ever play in the NRL. I really don’t think people saw this coming. This was an ambush Hannibal would have been proud of.

2. Manly- Dynamite. I don’t know what Tom Waterhouse, Sporting Bet, Sports Bet, Your Bet or My Bet are saying regarding the odds, but they must be getting shorter and shorter.

1. Canterbury- There’s more grind in this team than a barista making coffee. More grunt than a Toyota Hilux and more bight than The Great Australian. They just keep on trucking on and keep on winning. Just.



It’s time to start believing Eels and Tigers fans. Your teams are real!

The bad teams are starting to be more consistently bad but the top teams will be juggling around for a while still.

Here are this weeks power rankings:

16. Cronulla (No change)- They put a full Gallen in the tank but it wasn’t enough. There’s life in this team, but they are definitely giving everyone a head start.

15. North Queensland (No change)- Is anyone else sick of their whinging whenever they lose? You didn’t hear them complaining in last year’s semi final against the Sharks when the clock stopped giving them another chance at victory. Stop crying over spilt milk. You lost. Get on with it.

14. Newcastle (Down 1)- Moats, bows and arrows and knights couldn’t stop the invasion of the Broncos this week. This was a brutal loss. This was Games of Thrones brutal.

13. New Zealand- NRL life hasn’t started so well for the new coach. No need for chalk in the win column just yet. Perennial slow starters, they are going to need to come home faster than Kingston Town in his famous Cox Plate victory. “And the Warriors can’t win…”

12. Canberra (Up 2)- The ref may have had a shocker but the Raiders had a Croker. Try savers galore. This was a must win game and they came through and the Storm are green with envy.

11. Souths (Down 1)- Well… They just couldn’t pull a bunny out of the hat and win this week.

10. Melbourne (Down 1) – On the line. Short of the line. Bellamy will be lining up to pay the NRL $10k if he keeps carrying on and will definitely have a Bellyache.

9. Roosters (Up 2)- They stopped the Shaun Kenny-Dowall. The skid is over. They definitely aren’t the same team as last year, but premierships aren’t won in Easter.

8. St George (No change)- The Dragons are barely breathing fire and had a number of errors. But at the end of the day if you score more points than your opponents you should win.

7. Penrith (No change)- King Jamal returned to haunt his former team. The man who was once a wrecking ball is starting to find the same form that put him in a sky blue. A great win by the Panthers and this is one which may mean a lot come September.

6. Parramatta (Down 1)- The multicultural Eels, as they are now being called, lost a thriller. Did Brooks dive like Matthew Mitchum or was it a legitimate Greg Louganis dive? I can hear the blue and gold army assembling.

5. West Tigers (Up 1) – Lions and tigers have merged to form Ligers and right now this West’s and Balmain merger is looking just as threatening! 50,000 people came to watch this beast in its natural environment and they weren’t let down with what they saw.

4. Gold Coast (Down 3)- They have a new mascot; the squirrel. Who cares if Bird did this or not. It’s been going on for years. They’re football players. They’re grubs. And that’s why we love em!

3. Brisbane (No change)- The Broncos all had haircuts from the Barba and played with a fresh hair about them.

2. Manly (Up 2)- Understrength. Starved of ball like someone doing Passover. And they still won. This team is… Well this is just the Manly way. They are incredible.

1. Canterbury (Up 1)- The number of patients suffering heart attack symptoms have increased by 300 percent over the last 3 weeks. 3 games. 3 wins. A total winning margin of 3 points. I’m not sure if it’s fun or not being a Dogs fan at the moment.


This year’s competition is more topsey ‘Turvey’ than Steve Mortimer.

It’s easier to win at the Melbourne Cup than pick a winner at the moment. If the Storm and the Dogs had lost last weekend and they probably should have, it would have been one of the lowest recorded weeks of tipping in NRL history.

Here are this week’s power rankings.

16. Cronulla (Down 1)- Manly were terrible. Sharks were just diabolical. I’m almost out of adjectives for this team.

15. North Queensland (Down 1)- Someone call 000, 911 or some other emergency number. This team is in trouble. Give them CPR because they’ve had enough R&R.

14. Canberra (Down 3)- This team is just a mystery. This team is the Bermuda Triangle. They go missing.

13. Newcastle (Up 3)- #workwithwayne You just can’t write off a team with this coach. Are they a real team yet? I’m not even sure they know.

12. Warriors (Up 1)- They had a golden opportunity to really kick start their season. Instead they were booted out of the game in the last 10 minutes. Should have won easily. Lost.

11.Sydney Roosters (Down 2)- Is this team Milli Vanilli? Are they the real deal or are they a hoax?

10. Souths (Up 2)- If they were playing the board game, Snakes and Ladders, they would definitely be going up the ladder. They are on the move, like Bubba was, on ‘moving day’ last week in the US Masters.

9. Melbourne (Up 1)- I’ve never seen this team play more ‘get out of jail cards’ in a single season. Surely they’ve used their quota up! Not playing well, but playing well enough to scrape through games- either before or after the siren.

8. St George- Illawarra (Down 2)- I don’t feel sorry for this team. You have to play to the final whistle, simple as that. They can blame the ref all they want, but no-one stopped playing. Tackle and you’ll win games.

7. Penrith (Down 3)- There have been sightings of big black cats in Penrith over the years. There haven’t been any sightings of consistent winning big black cats in Penrith for a while.

6. West Tigers (Up 2)- Like a Kinder Surprise, this team continues to surprise.

5. Parramatta (Up 2)- The ghost of Paul Cariage appears to have gone. Like the Tigers, you almost have to start believing…

4. Manly (Up 1)- They didn’t play well against their sea rivals, but you don’t have to against the Sharks and can still score 24 points. No Wolfman. No problem. So many teams would love the problem of too many quality wingers.

3. Brisbane (Down 1)- Losing a local derby is never nice. But this team is a proper team. They were beaten by the hottest team in the comp at the moment. They’re definitely not bucked, but they arent’ bucking either.

2. Canterbury (Down 1)- The great escape last week. But that’s what great teams do and this team is shaping up to be one of those teams this year.

1. Gold Coast (Up 2)- The Titans weren’t on any radars. After the Broncos victory they can’t be missed on the radar. They are here to play. They are here to win. And they are winning.


Tipping a winner is hard in any sport and it’s getting harder in NRL!

I thought the March Madness college basketball concept where you need to tip all the winners was impossible- I think this year’s NRL comp is the next level. It’s harder than trying to get into a bar in Kings Cross after lock out now.

If anyone picked a perfect round last week, let me know, because you are a genius.
Here are this week’s power rankings and there’s been a lot of changes. As the comp settles down I can’t see moves like this week happening again.
16. Newcastle (Down 2)- The emotion of #riseforalex has worn off and they were exceptionally disappointing last night. Super coach Bennett has been Knighted up in Newcastle, and let’s hope he can work his magic on this team, which everyone wants to see perform. 
15. Cronulla (Up 1)- Well, they’re off the canvas with their first win. A stunning return to form. They were horrible a week ago and then played out of their skin to score 37 points. Could this be the start of things to come…they’re the Sharks, so you never really know.
14. North Queensland (Down 1)- Finally they showed what they can do. This team has more talent than the old favourite ‘Young Talent Time‘ and I expect more performances like this. Johnny Young isn’t steering this team around, Johnny Thurston is. Pretty sure he’s never been called Johnny before. 
13. New Zealand (Down 6)- Hopeless. Pathetic. Woeful. Their showing against the Sharks was worse than that movie ‘Falling Down’. And they certainly fell. Chumbawamba once wrote “I get knocked down, but I get up again” and I wonder if the Warriors can get back up after their inept display.  12. Souths (Up 3)- Burgess and Co with the lot. Like a good suburban hamburger, they had it all last week. Have they turned the corner? Time will tell.
11. Canberra (Down 4)- The Raiders should be used to horrible conditions and they didn’t adapt in the rain. The free flowing footy from one week ago disappeared. A tight loss, but in a comp this close, you need to win these games.
10. Melbourne (Down 5)- What has happened to this team? Time to start buying boats for players again and putting some cash in brown paper bags.
9. Roosters- Not playing well. Not playing badly. They’re like Charlie Sheen on Anger Management. You don’t love him or hate him, he’s just not the same as he was on Two and a Half Men. They’ve lost two weeks in a row to good teams. 
8. West Tigers(Up 2)- 16,000 brave fans sat in the rain and watched the Tigers maul Manly. The marshall’s were called in to look after the ground, but there was no marshall called Benji.
7. Parramatta (Up 4)- The Roxy nightclub at Parramatta will be going off as this team continues to play decent footy. Sandow’s cashed in his big pay cheque at the pokies and is starting to perform. Could the Eels have an answer at halfback, finally?
6. St George (Down 3)- The slide is on. Started well. Lost it against the Broncos and then were belted last week. Baseball was played at the SCG recently and the Dragons had nothing on the bases and were struck out well and truly.
5. Manly (Down 4)- I don’t know if they had jetlag travelling to the Inner West, but something was wrong. Maybe they’ve been taking too many selfies at Wharf Bar. 4. Penrith (Up 4)- “Deal or no Deal”. This team is the real deal. 
3. Gold Coast (Up 6)- Did they just beat Melbourne? They certainly did. They’re grinding out wins like a barista does with coffee. It’s not pretty yet and is just an espresso, but the latte’s will come soon. Another confusing team, who seems to keep on winning. Did you know they are the competition leaders??
2. Brisbane- They lost to the Eels…but the Eels aren’t too bad a team, I don’t think. I don’t really have a clue. A griffin maybe a legendary creature and coach Anthony Griffin needs some mythology to get his boys set for the local derby next week.
1. Canterbury (Up 3)- The Dogs are the best team in the competition by far at the moment. Their footy is “simply the best”. Des has got these boys over the mess of last year


There’s a famous expression- “Cheats don’t prosper”. I’m not sure about that anymore. 
“The only place success comes before work is in the dictionary”, is definitely true, but just from a sporting point of view I’m a bit confused about “cheats don’t prosper”.
Let’s have a look at a few examples.
Lance Armstrong cheated for a long time and made a lot of money from endorsements. He finally got found out but is still sitting pretty in his million dollar house and has lived an exorbitant life living off his winnings and big sponsorship dollars. 
He is a disgrace as an individual and the way he mercilessly ruined people lives is unforgivable. 
He cheated. He prospered.
Sean Peyton, coach of the New Orleans Saints (NFL) was suspended for 12 months after Bountygate. He may or may not claim he didn’t know about the scheme  or didn’t shut it down properly once he knew his players  were given financial incentives to hurt key opposition players during games. He’s the coach of the team and I don’t believe he didn’t know it was happening. If he didn’t know; he should have known.
He sat out his time and then got a new contract. A five year deal worth a reported $40 million. Who knows how long his scheme really went for. In the meantime he won a coveted Super Bowl. 
He cheated. He prospered.
Shane Flanagan, former coach of the Cronulla Sharks, was the coach at the time the alleged peptides were being administered to players. Again, did he know? I would assume he did. If not, like Sean Peyton, he should have. He is in charge.
Do you think the CEO of McDonald’s doesn’t know what’s happening in their company? Even Alan Joyce knows what’s happening at Qantas, but that’s slightly different as he masterminded their downfall. 
How was Flanagan rewarded for his poor behaviour? He was given a new three year contract. 
Hopefully if Flanagan oversees another doping regime, the Sharks can at least win a premiership, so people in the Shire can celebrate something. If you’re going to cheat, at least win! 
Do you think Ben Johnson took steroids thinking he wasn’t going to win? Hansie Cronje knew he wasn’t going to win with his betting scandal, but he at least he knew he’d win off the pitch.
Melbourne may have cheated with the salary cap and been found out in 2010, but the fans got to have a beer when their team won the Telstra Premiership in 2007 and 2009. The club would have sold merchandise and it would have helped with new sponsorships. 
They cheated. They prospered. 
The best example of ‘cheats never prosper’ though, is back in 2009 with the Harlequins Rugby team. It was called ‘Bloodgate‘. I’m not sure why the poor old gate gets caught up in all the dramas, when all it does is open and close. Obviously Watergate was the main gate, but there was Nipplegate (with Janet Jackson) and I’ve already mentioned Bountygate. 
In 2009, Harlequins winger Tom Williams came off the field with an apparent blood injury, to allow fly half, Nick Evans to return to the field of play, having been off injured, previously. Evans was meant to kick the winning field goal, but he was so injured, his kick missed by miles. Williams had bitten a blood capsule to make it look like blood and cause the substitution under a blood rule.
People make mistakes and should be given second chances. If they don’t learn from their mistakes they are stupid, not ignorant. I hope Sean Peyton, Shane Flanagan and another coach in a similar situation, James Hird, have all learnt their lessons.