The Cumberland Throw

From The Stands – Disappointment, Leadership, Gratitude

For so many 2020 has been a hard year.

Bushfires, floods and Covid have wreaked havoc on Australia and have also directly impacted our family. But at a time that was anything but normal and at times very worrying, we had the footy to bring us together. Sometimes we came together virtually to discuss the game and as the season progressed we met up at the games.

I was so disappointed for the team against the Rabbitohs. As BA said it was a lost opportunity, we can’t and won’t hide from that. This team should be aiming towards a premiership and if they don’t get that they need to look at why and set about improving.

My support for the team will always be there. I supported them in 2018 when they came last and I will certainly support them after our defeat against the Rabbitohs.  The team trained all year to get that opportunity. I know they will be disappointed when they watch the tape but that game is gone. Learn from it, become better and bring on 2021.

People will throw stones and point fingers. Unfortunately our society has evolved to be able to scream and shout in a text message. I don’t need to repeat the criticism, so I won’t.

When I looked at our 2017 finals team there were only 4 players from that team who played against the Rabbitohs. I was a little surprised but in my mind it reinforced my view that this club is not standing still and doing nothing. After the disaster of the 2018 season we took our medicine, owned our mistakes and moved forward.

In 2019 the difference between our best and worst from week to week was miles apart. This year we were in all but one game. Apart from the Souths shut out, our losses still saw us lead early, but have a 10-15 minute period that killed us.

Again against the Rabbitohs our 15 minutes after halftime hurt us. It is easy to point to the missed goal kick but from the stands it looked like we lost that game in the 15 minutes after half time. We gave Damien Cook momentum and he is deadly if you do that. He got on a roll we could not stop. I am sure the players do not need me or any commentator to point this out.

When our starting forwards go off there is too much drop in our team. It is something we need to learn how to manage, because you cannot solve it by playing your starting forwards big minutes every game. Next year we need to learn to concentrate for every minute in every game. We need to learn to put a team like the Dogs away when we lead 18-0. Champion teams practise good standards every game so that when they get under pressure they do what they know. They practice them until they simply become what you do. That is why players come into the Storm team and slip into the role.

After the game we stayed and waited for our Eels to finish the huddle to applaud them. It was really hard to listen to the Bunnies song belt out over the loud speaker, but good luck to them. Their supporter base is as loyal and dedicated as ours. I don’t think they will win the competition but as both the Knights and we found out give them the opportunity and they will make you pay.

The King

There will be knockers but that will always be the case. We sat in one of the Eels supporter bays, bay 119 and those seats gave me the opportunity to see something, the best moment from our game. I don’t think the TV picked it up but I saw it. It was the action I saw from our captain Clint Gutherson. Others will point out his ability to score points, to get our team into the fight, but I saw a better moment. I saw a moment that will help this team next year.

When Dylan Brown threw the intercept pass and the Rabbitohs ran away to score I saw Dylan put his head down. He was so upset. He was so disappointed. He  has so much talent, and he gives his all every game but he is really a kid when it comes to first grade.

Gutho had used every bit of energy he had in the game. He could have dropped his shoulders and walked back but instead he stood up, ran immediately over to Dylan, put his arm around his shoulders, tapped  Dylan on the head and walked with Dylan all the way back to the goal line.

Every champion team has a few leaders. The players other players play for,  the ones they follow, the ones they trust, the ones they listen to because they don’t want to let them down.  Lockyer and Petro at Brisbane, Johns and Ben Kennedy at the Knights, Ricky and Mal at the Raiders, Alexander and Simmons at Penrith, Thurston and Scott at the Cowboys. You get the point.

Junior

This team improved this year because our leaders emerged. They developed a presence on the field not simply as individual talented players but leaders. Gutho, Junior and Nathan Brown are our leaders. They are players others follow. They are the ones who need to drive our improvement over the off season. They will need to get our attention focussed onto the little things in games that we control, so that we develop good habits that hold up well in high intensity, winner take all games.

If you don’t believe me check Gutho’s photo on his Instagram feed post match. He put up a photo Mitch Moses. He said, without words, that he had Moses’ back. Blaming that loss on Mitch Moses only demonstrates the most elementary understanding of league. Having people’s back in tough times is what leaders do. This team needs Dylan and Moses to go to the next level next year. Knowing the other players have their back is an incredibly important part of their combined development.

I genuinely feel that for the first time in a long time we have on field leaders in this team that can take us to the next step. They are not just respected, as we have had incredibly well respected leaders in our recent past, but these three are integral to just about all our attacking and defensive powers.

Some will say we failed again. While I can’t ignore the areas needed for improvement and I know the team won’t ignore it, the development of a strong, determined, highly inspirational and young leadership group that has the desire to improve and the love and respect of the fans means that 2020 is not at all a lost year.

Our favourite Cyborg, Nathan Brown

Last year when Gutho’s contract drama played out in the media I wrote our team does not function without him. He has proven that to be correct and now he has too very influential and talented sidekicks in Brown and Junior with him.

So in my last From the Stands for this season I finish with those simple words. Thank you to our players and staff. You made sacrifices so our game could go on. You made sacrifices so that families could have something to take their minds off the worries or the isolation that Covid brought to many people.

Thank you and have a great break. To those players  leaving, thank you and good health. I am going to miss seeing Taka in the Blue and Gold.

As every Parra fan knows, there is always next year. I am sure all Parra players and fans will be reminded about 1000 times that 2021 will be 35 years since our last premiership.

Bring it on.

 

Shelley

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Offside

I’m still disappointed I don’t accept this as a good season because in the end we are out in week 2 again. I hope adjustments are made I firmly believe that our coaching staff needs changes it doesn’t matter if Murphy and Kidwell are good blokes you need to rejig the coaching staff BA and the players need new voices. For every positive we have added negatives I had a coach tell me once “ignore the positives you know what’s good, you learn from the negative” I hope we work on fixing the problem issues Effort and just making the… Read more »

Shelley

I cannot disagree in terms of fixing the issues needed. I guess what is disappointing is the click bait rubbish being written and the illogical thinking of supporters. See my other reply, so
I only had to write it once.

Salty Pete

Shelley, this is the best article I have read. What a wise, positive, yet practical insight you have shown. We all know additional work needs to happen, but I always struggle to make it not sound negative. You have an uncanny knack to be able to do this. Thanks for all your work on the CT and have a great off season.

Shelley

Thank you, same to your family.

In our bay on Saturday we sat next to people we did not know. The lady proceeded to give my son lollies and home made brownies she made. The Parra family is unique.

Parra Pete

First of all, I congratulate the team at The Cumberland Throw for yet another great coverage of “All things Eels” in 2020. Training reports, match reports, inside information, NOTHING LIKE IT ANYWHERE ON THE WEB. You people are AMAZING, and I thank you all for your time and efforts. Secondly, I can cop a loss when the players HAVE A GO..and they did on Saturday against the Rabbits. The full-time score of 38-24 could have been the other way around. Souths were gifted AT LEAST 18 points…through ‘fate’ IF Moses had landed the goal instead of hitting the post.. IF… Read more »

BDon

PP, Moses got ankled tapped by Cody Walker’s leg which caused him to half stumble into Sutton then fall. It looked soft but Walker had no eyes for the ball on the ground 3 mtrs ahead of Moses. Technically, something in that, but bunker went with refs call to play on. We went flat footed, Cook scored. And that’s me being PP, pathologically pedantic, because we needed an 8 point miracle try with 2 minutes left.

Poppa

Nice stuff Shelley and well written. All that aside some difficult decisions need to be made. First and most immediate, I hope Michael Cronin has a chat to Mitchel Moses over how he felt when he missed a goal in the 77 grand final and how MM needs to react…..I am worried about the potential emotional damage and the baggage that can bring. Some say Ben Hunt was never the same after he dropped that kick in the closing minutes of his grand final. In Mitchell’s case it won’t leave him alone and I hope we don’t just put an… Read more »

Shelley

Poppa, I respect everyone’s right to an opinion and never take offence to people who disagree with me.
I think you know I have a different view on BA and would be against mass changes. See my
added comment I explain why we must be more like the Roosters and avoid becoming like the Tigers and Bulldogs.

poppa

I am not disagreeing with you Shelley and at no stage did I advocate mass changes, my whole concept was to keep stability within the structure, the mass changes will be happening this year, 11 outgoing!
BA will have a big role to play in this process, the advocacy of a new coach is a natural occurring event…..tactically BA is now not showing the next level he needs to go to…..again not an insult but understood by most people thinking objectively.

Anonymous

Great article Shelley and as always you make a disappointed Parra supporter feel good again. I have hope that the boys will deliver in 2021. Blue and Gold forever 💛💙

Mr pessimist

There’s a huge difference between a supporter and a follower , most on this sight are the former with you being one of the best Shelley , sixties pipped you 😇, anyway it’s history now so my biggest concern now is the announcement of 11 departures and no landings , given this is now the stingiest club and recruitment department I shudder to think who we will sign , obviously no one that can play because they are to expensive , so to all clubs bring out your cheap rubbish ,we’re in the market for them , doesn’t matter if… Read more »

Milo

Pessimist why do you stingy? PLs explain? we tied up Gutho, RCG, Junior, DB and MM on decent coin. We do not have DCE on huge coin, but I respect your view.

Mr pessimist

The call at the moment is “to much money “ you buy cheap you get cheap , The clubs policy now is running the footy Team on the cheap , they won’t pay the money the successful clubs will , we are a business now the footy team comes second !!!!!!

B&G

Might add , not really a pessimist , opposite actually combined with realist , just not liking some rumours circulating from credible places .

poppa

The call you are taking about is fan forum thing, and has no basis of fact,if you look at the history of the past 4/5 years the answers to all your questions are there with sound reasoning. Sorry Pessimist but your heart is not really with Parra.
Go follow Roosters, caps and budgets don’t worry them!

Rowdy

The scriptures say not to call people names, so I won’t be disrespectful to Almighty God. So you’re safe Mr pessimist at least from this post. What I don’t understand though, is your reference to CHEAP? BA brought Junior back from Canberra $650K, Mitchell Moses was on similar $$$ now on about $800K, Gutho came for peanuts from Manly and now on ~ $700K and in the SOO squad. He brought that madman from Souffs and Wests Nathan Brown for pocket change, he’s on about $$600K and in SOO squad with his Cabra juniors teammate Junz. We got RCG at… Read more »

Last edited 5 days ago by Rowdy
Anonymous

All true you said but Read your 2nd last line mate , all before as you said someone came , it’s CHANGED .

poppa

Yes Mark O’Neill is a big part of those signings and it should be corrected ……all these blokes came before him is not quite true and the renegotiation of those contracts were heavily in his lap..

Moffat

To the Cumberland Throw team, simply great stuff again this year, I love to read your varying opinions, and Shelley an awesome contribution. I hate to say it, but I think we got what we all knew we were going to get, based on the fact that our team simply folds under pressure, we need a tougher space between the ears, they are all good footy players in their own right, but simply not mentally tough. I am not sure that BA is the one to bring this out in them! I will continue to BLEED blue and gold forever,… Read more »

Shelley

High everyone different people are commenting on changes etc so I wrote this reply in a comment so I only had to write it once. My comment on fixing issues- Look at the Roosters. First and foremost they keep things in house. If someone in house did genuinely leak that information to Mr Chammas, they need to be told to pack their bags. Even people who want change should realise that leaks to the media is self destructive. We will become the Tigers/ Bulldogs if not careful. We have been there, it is a death spiral. Second, the Roosters know… Read more »

Milo

Succinct and well put Shelley.

Brett Allen

Firstly, the Roosters didn’t sack Trent Robinson when they missed the 8 because he had already coached them to a premiership, BA hasn’t, and isn’t getting any closer to doing so. Secondly, the Michael Chammas article was balanced and well written, and it highlighted what most fans already know, that the team has reached its ceiling under BA. Thirdly, the idea that we have to have a replacement coach ready to go before we sack BA is just nonsense. With the roster we’ve got we wouldn’t even have to advertise, we’d have quality coaches knocking down the door wanting to… Read more »

poppa

Brutal but you hit it on the head Brett.

Lets acknowledge the good things that have been done and lets look at the realities of what needs to be done.
I am every bit a Parra supporter as you Shelly and I would love BA to stay forever but the realist in me says its time…..sad but true.

Colin Hussey

I agree with on this Pops up to a point or 2. they being if BA remains as coach for next season, 1: He has to have the team at least in a higher position than this year. 2: he has to have new assistant coaches working with him in order to achieve the first point.

DDay

Good analytical write up Shelley. We are all disappointed with the “missed opportunity” that was season 2020. I think 34 years of recurring false dawns compounds the sense of disappointment. There were some great highs (wins against Raiders, Knights and the only team to beat the Riff) and the monkeys off our back (beating Cronulla and the Storm) great wins. We also have 4 players in the NSW squad – it’s been many years (back to Brian Smith I suspect) since we had so many. And good point about only 4 players from the 2017 playing this year – just… Read more »

Last edited 6 days ago by DDay
Jpe Briffa

Thanks Shelley i enjoyed reading your articles every week hope to do same next season take care and stay safe

Shelley

Thank you, same to your family.

Anonymous

Pretty obvious aerobic fitness levels are not were they should be with all these fade outs in 2nd half.

Michael Malouf

It’s a good point about Gutho’s leadership skills consoling Dylan Brown, but I think when people make a mistake, they know it and know what not to do next time.

When I didn’t or don’t want to disappoint people, especially on the field, silence from leaders in those situations resounds the most with me.

Certainly ripping in to someone doesn’t help, but consoling them also doesn’t always help because there’s no repercussions for them making the same mistake again. Plus you know what went wrong, so no need for someone reinforcing that.

Rowdy

Michael, welcome to the TCT, I can see where you’re coming from mate, but Dylan is only a 19/20 year old kid in the biggest game of his life behind by too many points and he sees an opportunity to get us back into striking distance and attempts a pass to put us there. When it was intercepted not only did his head go down it broke the hearts of about 8,ooo fans in the stands. I wonder how it must feel to have 16.000 eyes crawling all over your back? I reckon Gutho’s gesture was exactly what he needed.

Michael Malouf

Shite I probably should have picked a nickname. Haven’t been on here before.

BDon

Thank you Shelley for a year of opinion with substance. Always a fresh thought, an angle for digestion good, bad or ugly, educative, and great support for the team, club and the game. Late in the first half, Cook was bringing his forwards on to the ball and denting the ruck, and after the break, with fresh legs they continued. I thought if we could defend it, deny them early points, we’ll make a big statement about the second half, and pick up our rhythm again. Geez, I got that wrong,the seeds were sown then for a bizarre script. Agree… Read more »

Colin Hussey

Shelley, first of all, thank you for your wonderful posts during the season, all of which add a lot to this site, which is in the main a pleasure to be part of, I trust you and family have a great Christmas and then into training for next season. After the end of WW2 my late dad was declared basically no longer needed and put out of the RAAF after only 12 months in, but tried to join earlier but being at the Lithgow small arms factory in maintenance he was deemed essential to the war effort and could not… Read more »

Parra Pete

I too cannot understand the attacks on Brad Arthur, Mitchell Moses…With an ounce of luck last week, the Eels would be playing Penrith for a Grand Final spot. Shaun Lane error in opening minutes gifted Souths first penalty goal. Haze Dunster, on debut, made a simple handling error..Souths score from the ensuing scrum. Gutho launches an amazing raid and results in three tries all converted from sideline by Mitchell…Parra lead 18-8 at the break. Souths score good tries to Liam Knight, Cameron Murray after half time to give them the lead 20-18. Moses hits the posts with a gimme penalty,… Read more »

Brett Allen

It had very little to do with luck. It was a lack of attention to detail that cost us, as it always does. Mitch had no business missing that kick. It’s a huge moment in the game and he simply had to make it. He’s our highest paid player, and he’s paid to make the big plays. However, the rest of the team HAVE to assume he was going to miss, just in case. Yet another little detail they inconveniently ignored. The rest was just pure and utter capitulation, not bad luck, it was entirely of our own creation. We… Read more »

Parra Pete

He landed four conversions from touch…I don’t think he should be the whipping boy, for a loss that could have been a sensational win if the ball had bounced the other way..I agree with you re the assumption that a goal is going to be kicked, and players have already retreated to half way, or gather in a group alongside the posts. I have always had concerns about that practice… Regarding what he is getting paid….reminds me of the story of when coach said to a player “You’re getting $500,000 to score those tries”, to which the player replied “Yeah,… Read more »

Brett Allen

But again, there is still this “well we tried hard” mentality. 100% effort is not something to be congratulated on, it is an expectation, if you’re not trying 100% on every play then you need to find another career. Do you think the Bulldogs players stopped trying all year ? Of course not, they left nothing in the shed this year, and it wasn’t even close to being enough. We have the talent, we put in the effort, but we don’t have the execution, which is a result of the lack of attention to the little details. Everyone else in… Read more »

Parra Pete

If the other side is TOO GOOD, not much you can do about it if you have a go, There is nothing to do about it IF the bounce of the ball and luck of the game go against you. The Eels gave the match EVERYTHING they had. Wasn’t ‘well we tried hard”..it was a physical effort where they gave all they had….and didn’t get the ‘rub of the green. The players were entitled to come off the field, look in the mirror and say “I gave it everything I had”. The biggest disappointment for me, is that it is… Read more »

Rowdy

I was trying not to respond to any of your often unjustified and error laden criticism Brett. But when you refuse to get back into your kennel because you still haven’t bitten enough passers by and revert to blatant disingenuous and deceptive recollections. ie and given that it has not improved in 7 years under BA’s coaching? What crap ’14 was annus horribilis but we improved in 15′ and under great stress off field would have made the top 8 in ’16. Are you seeing a trend here yet Brett? 2017 we made top 4 2018 with the return of… Read more »

Brett Allen

Rowdy, you’ve misrepresented my words. I said our “attention to detail” has not improved in years, and it hasn’t. Yes we have improved as a team, but that has been purely as a result of upgrade in talent. We can’t upgrade our roster appreciably and BA has shown he can’t improve us in the areas we desperately need improvement.

Milo

Brett I agree about the attention to detail was missed on the weekend, and the ability to hold off teams when we made an error, that is my primary beef, the ability to withstand pressure and we did not do that; I do not blame MM for the kick, it happens but the i hold the team accountable for the collective lack of execution and attention to detail to dropped balls etc and the missed kick debacle and defence that allowed tries. The coaching staff also are under the pump. And I would keep BA for next season and see… Read more »

Brett Allen

Look, he had to make that kick, he’s paid the big bucks to make those big plays, there’s no hiding from that, BUT, his teammates had to assume he was going to miss, because if we recovered possession we might have scored a try from the broken play, who knows what could have happened. Gus said it best on 100% Footy, the Eels can have periods of inspired footy when we can lay on 2 or 3 tries in minutes, we did against the Bunnies, we did it against the Panthers earlier in the season, we did it against the… Read more »

Milo

I get it that he had to make the kick, but he didn’t. Its simple. It hit the posts etc. that is what annoyed me, we allowed as a team this to occur and the ensuing try. Yes you are right about the possession, a hungry team would have got the ball back. I do not disagree about the mental side of it, we needed to be better and show it for 80, I have mentioned playing for 80 all yr.

Colin Hussey

The missed goal was very much a missed opportunity, I cannot reccolect him missing a goal in that position previously, no wind to work against as I understand it was a wind free match & on home soil. Those who walked back rather than waiting for the kick were real dumb, sure it may have looked as if they had 200%confidence of the kick being taken, but for me it showed arrogance from them, as a result the defence at both ends of the field was like a shotgun have been used with ratshot in it, does not hit any… Read more »

Last edited 4 days ago by Colin Hussey
Rowdy

And the fat lady sings.

Rowdy

I don’t believe that to be the case Brett. From my perspective BA has overseen massive improvement in MM, Gutho, Nathan Brown and Dylan Brown to name a few.

Brett Allen

It’s not about the individuals, it’s about the team collective mentality. We were only down by 8 with 15 to go, 15 minutes is an eternity in footy. What did we do as a team, we went mad trying to play catch up footy straight away, with short kick offs & restarts, pushed passes, etc. As Gus said, we needed to get back into the grind for at least another 8-10 minutes, then year OK if you have to start pushing things, then fair enough. But we were still right in that game and we panicked, and that’s on Mitch,… Read more »

BDon

I think if you look at the period after we scored the third try in first half, similar applies. I know momentum comes and goes in games, even with the bench rotation we still had it, but in the space of 3 or 4 sets, handed it to the Bunnies, who got the sniff and grabbed the game between the 35 and 55 minute mark.

Rowdy

G’day Col, one of the things I like about post season even before we get into next pre-season is the opportunity to hear and tell a few story’s. Thanks for sharing yours Colin. It was enjoyable to read and reminisce as I’m not far behind you being born in 1952 in Merrylands. My Dad was a returned serviceman and a die-hard Parramatta man from ’47 too. I just had the opportunity to prepare one of my grandsons who is and 11 year old Parrafanatic for the possibility of a good game with an inevitable loss when the fat lady sings.… Read more »

Colin Hussey

Thanks Rowdy, Prayer is what keeps me going, I do can do without RL, but not prayer.

Cheers

Clive

Nice post Shelley It’s certainly going to be an important couple of months for the Eels with so many guys leaving. I am a big BA fan but he needs to make some hard decisions on his coaching and playing staff. Kidwell has to go. The disastrous right side defence should have been fixed months ago and to concede 74 points in two finals games is totally unacceptable. The playing roster needs work but only in a few positions. We need two good bench props, a starting backrower to replace Lane and obviously the Centres need an overhaul with the… Read more »

Brett Allen

I’m not worried about the points conceded in the finals, everyone is conceding points in this years finals, even the Storm. To me our area of needs are, in order of priority, left centre, middle forward, backup hooker, backup edge forward, right wing, left wing, backup halfback. Left centre is our biggest concern. Look for the club to target someone like James Roberts, although he is better suited to the right side. I’m disappointed that Jaemon Salmon is being flicked. What did he do wrong ? He was being groomed as a centre last we heard, now would be the… Read more »

BDon

Any thoughts on Niukore being a starter? He seems to have brought his game right up to a standard that time on park/experience hones it to another level. If I can see that, so will other clubs.

Brett Allen

No doubt he could do it, he has done it, but he’s behind the Big 3 right now.

Colin Hussey

Brett, possibly your most sensible post for a while, congratulations! Most of it I agree with so the points I make are on those areas from top down. Jimmy the jet. On his day he’s certainly one of the top centres, his speed is excellent as is the aspect that he has a reasonably strong body but also somewhat injury prone but what is his best position, wing or centre? Worth looking at I guess and as Souths are wanting to unload him they could pay part of what he’s on, depending on how much but I would rather sign… Read more »

Anonymous

Heard at least 10 juniors will be doing the pre season with high hopes for a large portion of them , Centre , half and wingers predominant .

Rowdy

You are a classic paradox Mr Brett. I cannot fault most of your observations here. They are clearly extracted from their onfield performances and I commend your ability to dissect some things astutely while putting aside your vexatious hatred of our coach.

Brett Allen

I don’t hate BA, I’m an unabashed fan as a matter of fact, I just don’t think he can take us any further.

Milo

Brett good comments and I cannot disagree, I am also disappointed we let Salmon go and Schneider; pls Peats cannot come back – tough boy but injuries are a huge concern. I would have gone for Hetherington but heard he is going elsewhere. We need some strong and tough boys; I agree about Stone in that he needs to find a spot, tough as nails.
Well said Brett. I have no idea who we will get but we have let some younger ones and need some experience incoming particularly the bench, and outside backs.

Brett Allen

I’m also disappointed we let Salmon go, especially in light of Jenko’s likely suspension. As for Schneider, the word I’ve heard is the club is concerned about his injury issues and that he really doesn’t fit with Mahoney’s timeline. Nathan Peats on the other hand does. He would be purely as a back up, someone BA could throw in there and know he could do the job for a game or two if required. Jack Hetherington was at the top of most people’s wishlist, but the best we could offer was a bench spot, the Dogs are offering a starting… Read more »

Glenn

So we’re likely to replace 1 injury prone player (Schneider) with another (Peats) and probably pay more. Makes complete sense???

Milo

Glenn I agree and that is my concern, and I would prefer a young guy any day and someone who knows our club and was earmarked for NRL. Look at Easts if you the believe media (Huh) are thinking about moving on Flanagan to C’bury (may not occur) but they are thinking about the 18 / 19 yr old to come into the nrl squad. My thinking is also that someone like Schneider could (I said could) have been training as a back up half for MM or DB if injured. Sorry but Peats is tough / good but injuries….I… Read more »

Brett Allen

Hope I did not read what ?

Colin Hussey

Glenn, Schneider for mine probably needs a full season not playing again as he has been pretty well injured most of the last 3 odd years, there was one year where he came back and was injured again, a couple of games afterwards. I have not seen him play and his name has pretty much gone off the radar the no reserves also would not have helped him. I agree with Brett regarding Peats, when not injured or trying to protect himself the last time I saw anything of him, he was capable but also less than he was before… Read more »

Brett Allen

Yes, but Peats is experienced, Schneider is not.

Colin Hussey

Agree especially regarding Stone. I mentioned above that I watched the Bega fire appeal trial game against the riff last night. Salmon & Parry were both playing in the centres, & from what I saw Salmon was out of his depth, very close I thought to Waqa, as on more than a couple of occasions he simply stood and allowed the opposition attacker to run past him, and not just once. Parry though tried much more and did some good things, he was much better then Salmon.. Going back some years & IIRC it was under Smiths coaching that he… Read more »

Anonymous

Parramattas new signing , carter somebody , magna I think , yep that’s it , Magna Carta !!

Rowdy

That’s a better buy in than if we had signed up to “The Bill of Wrongs”

Greg Okladnikov

Thanks Shelley for your articles, and also to the whole team at TCT. Each week as a fan has been more enjoyable with your insights, and podcasts. My observations of the season overall – I think at the start of the year if anyone said we would finish 3rd, we would all be happy. The loss to Souths was disappointing as it felt like we lost the game, rather than they won the game. We have the talent….just need to develop that instinct to finish teams off / manage a game to the end/ and when a game is there… Read more »

Glenn

Thanks Shelley for your contributions during the year and your unabashed support of the team. Clearly the other TCT boys are shattered, as their silence after the loss has been deafening, but I want to congratulate them for their continuing excellence throughout the year also. Now to the team, from my point of view they played tired for the last half of the year and all that is on BA. BA has to have a complete change in mindset and become more ruthless like Bellamy and Robinson. They make changes when needed to improve the team and don’t pick and… Read more »

Milo

Yes Glenn it is all about making the squad stronger and tougher, and the coaching side of it too. I still go back to the defence guy we had years ago (forget his name) he seemed to be good but let him go to Penrith? think he was from Melbourne. Maybe we were trained too hard at times, I do not know, I was not there but the mental side is what got us I feel. Our bench dropped at times and again we to look at this. I am not sure about A Carr, as I think BA will… Read more »

Billy

THE BENCH

Billy

I am all for Brad as coach,he has revitalised our club,however the bench he went with was a total disaster.Evans has had maybe 6 good games since he landed.Davey is a fill in at best.Ray Stone makes half a dozen tackles gives away Penalties & six agains wouldn’t run 20 metres a game.poor Will is a trier but again is a fill in at best.the disastrous bench cost us big time & this must be rectified.

Rowdy

I have a philosophy about a strong starting middle, needing a strong bench middle rotation that comes on and keeps on! Until Peni Terepo was sidelined Peni and Kane came on almost simultaneously. They had the opposition going “Oh no, look at this, is there no respite”? Peni’s last game was Round 6 I believe and at that point we were leading the comp outright. Although Marata was also coming off the bench and playing well, it was not having the same impact of the one two punch that Peni and Kane had developed back to back.

Colin Hussey

Unfortunately Peni never went & got his needed hand surgery, & Evens too often was looking at what he had done last match and if he had to do the same. Problem both had so much hidden potential that there was no chance of it coming out of hiding. I watched Stone in early games and especially in the Bega trial he was much more aggro in that game and has slipped somewhat, he can become a player like Peni if he chooses to do so and work on it, he’s 6cm shorter than Peni and 10 Kg lighter, somehow… Read more »

Glenn

Ray Stone has not impressed me since playing NRL and as Billy says always gives away a penalty, 6 again and always good for a dropped ball as well. He came on for a 10 minute cameo in ine game and gave away all 3. Needs to go imo.

The rev aka snedden

Thanks for all you have done Shelley. It’s been a wild ride in 2020.

Still finishing 3rd is a great achievement.

Maybe next year is the year we can all talk about as being our year.

Still proud of the way we played this year when no one gave us a chance. Hopefully new recruits will make us a better team.

The rev aka Snedden

There’s one question that will be asked over the offseason. Is Brad Arthur the right person to lead us to the title 🏆 that all us Eel fan’s crave. Personally I Think not. I Think we need Flannagan in control to take us to the 🏆. Look everyone will say Brad is the right person but his never taken us past week 2 of the semi’s. I Think the player’s have had enough of hearing his voice time for fresh idea’s. Unless we want to wait another year then pay out Brad’s last year n go after Wayne Bennett. Yes… Read more »

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