AFTER watching a pretty good second Test between Australia and England this week, and being brave enough to have the sound on the television for the first session of the final day, it has become more than obvious to me that Channel 9 is obsessed with pre-game analysing of everything.
The only thing the experts don't talk about is the toilet habits of the players - maybe that will come up on the next tour to India - but they talk about everything else.
Call me a cranky old man but talk about time wasting and over pontification by ex-players but they leave nothing out and I find it ridiculous.
Then the game starts and they endlessly replay everything and now the umpires and captains do the same and then they analyse whether the captain should have questioned the decision and then they replay that, wow what a debacle.
Of course it is the same in the NRL, pre-game gadgets, with ex-players predicting what will happen during the game and then it starts and endless replays, calls to the bunker and then a decision followed by more replays by the commentators on whether the said decision was right or wrong. As Homer Simpson famously said, "And away we go” but it certainly isn't as funny?
How have we got to this addiction of questioning everything and replaying everything on a thousand different angles? I have one name for you, Greg Hartley.
For the younger crew, Hollywood Hartley was a referee in the '70s who was famous in 1978 of seemingly giving Manly a rails run through the finals. Refereeing all their games plus the grand final which was an 11-11 draw with Sharks and then the replay that Manly won 16-nil.
Along the way when they played the Eels, Manly scored the winning try on what turned out to be the seventh tackle and then the following week beat Wests 17-11 after the Magpies had two tries disallowed that looked like tries.
It was about then that the penny dropped and some commentators started to discover that television cameras could maybe keep people a touch more accountable. Now we are living the dream and in my mind it really is yuck.
With Christmas looming a lot of columnists break out the lists to fill the pages as there is not a lot going on. But, I will spare you apart from a parting observation about our surfing production line led by Julian Wilson and Keely Andrew and a couple of bus loads of exceptional juniors doing the Coast proud and all knocking on the door of world fame.
I could fill a couple of paragraphs with the up-and-coming stars but thought I would go the other way and hand out a gold star for persistence, Mitch Coleborn.
If ever there should be a picture in the dictionary beside the words persistent, talented and courageous, there should be photo of this bloke. I am not sure whether he is having another crack in 2018 at getting into the main tour but he sure does deserve to make it.The Sunshine Coast should certainly be proud of his tenacity.
I am going to spare you my ramblings until January 12. Have a Happy Christmas and fun new year and do me a favour, hug someone you love.
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