Robert Dillon: Seven Days in League

THURSDAY

I’M flicking around on Foxtel and catch a replay of one of the greatest games of all time, the 1989 grand final.

Backdoor Benny, Blocker, Siro, Junior Pearce, Big Mal, Lozza, Lazzo, Sticky ... and goalkicking Pommy centre Andy Currier.

I am intrigued by unusual strapping around the back of Currier's thighs.

Then it dawns on me ... he's wearing a jockstrap.

Not often seen in Australia, the jockstrap was de rigueur during the three seasons I had playing club cricket in England, for reasons that eluded me.

The trend has never really caught on Down Under, and perhaps it is just as well. 

I never thought it was a particularly flattering look, and when you combine a jockstrap with those tight shorts the Tigers used to wear, it's a deadset rugby league fashion crime. No wonder Balmain lost that GF.

UP UP CRONULA: Prime Minister Scott Morrison his mate Josh Frydenberg watch Sunday's clash between the Sharks and the Knights at the taxpayers' expense in Parliament House. Picture: AAP

UP UP CRONULA: Prime Minister Scott Morrison his mate Josh Frydenberg watch Sunday's clash between the Sharks and the Knights at the taxpayers' expense in Parliament House. Picture: AAP

FRIDAY

SEVEN Days has long subscribed to a theory that, until today, I thought would require a scientific experiment to verify.

I've often wondered what would happen if you stood Andrew Fifita and Josh Dugan side by side, backs to a wall, and shone a torch in Fifita’s left ear.

My guess has always been that the beam of light from the torch would then emerge from Dugan's right ear.

As of today, that experiment is no longer required.

Judging by their expletive-laden performance on a dim-witted podcast, the evidence is conclusive beyond all debate.

There is absolutely nothing inside the heads of Fifita and Dugan, other than vacant space.

One columnist refers to Fifita as “a bit of a nong”, which I suspect is highly defamatory. To nongs.

I mean, I’d imagine any self-respecting nong would be outraged about being compared to a Fifita.

In among a litany of F-bombs and C-bombs, Fifita labels one veteran Sydney journalist “a complete f---wit”.

He later declares: “You know you have made it when c----s hate ya”.

It's an interesting philosophy and perhaps an unintended compliment to the aforementioned scribe, although Fifita is probably too  dopey to follow his own logic.

SATURDAY

WHAT’S doing with Korbin Sims’ hair?

This time last year, the Brisbane prop appeared as if he was auditioning for a start as one of those bikie gang members on Sons of Anarchy.

Now it’s looking more like he’s had a perm.

Tonight big Korbin is probably just relieved to steer clear of Roosters wrecking ball Dylan Napa, who left him eating via a straw earlier in the season.

Napa produces a carbon copy of his demolition-derby technique to give Brisbane hooker Andrew McCullough a free ticket to Disneyland.

Napa escaped suspension for his flying head-butt on Sims, but this time he has no more get-out-of-jail-free cards up his sleeve and cops a three-week holiday.

SUNDAY

PHOTOS taken from Parliament House in Canberra are a reminder that the odds are stacked against the Knights when they arrive at Shark Park.

Australia’s temporary Prime Minister, Scott Morrison, and some bloke called Josh Frydenberg, who is apparently the new treasurer, have their office TV tuned into the footy.

Apparently ScoMo is a mad Sharks fan who prefers to watch games on the hill with a pie, or two, and a beer.

This all leaves me worried about the pressure on referees Jon Stone and Ziggy Przeklasa-Adamski.

The poor old refs have been copping it all season, but how must it feel to be in charge of a game with the PM breathing down your neck? Get one call wrong and he’ll probably deport you to Manus Island.

Not surprisingly, the Sharks win the match 38-12 after the Knights cop a 12-5 bath in the penalty count, as well as losing Aidan Guerra to the sin-bin.

All of which is a reminder that the next federal election can’t come soon enough.

I say vote one Kim Beazley. He’d give the Knights a fair go.

At nearby Kogarah Oval, the Dragons continue their belated charge towards the wooden spoon in a 38-0 capitulation against the Dogs.

Many are asking why the early-season front-runners are suddenly stinking it up.

I trace it back to the day they flew into Townsville and coach Mary McGregor tossed up a few blatant porkies when the local media inquired why Tyson Frizell was not travelling with the team.

Once the coach goes ga-ga, it’s all downhill.

MONDAY 

WARRIORS veteran Simon Mannering prepares to celebrate his 300th game and is widely recognised for racking up more trips across the “ditch” than any player in NRL history.

You would assume the 193-centimetre back-rower gets first dibs on those exit-row seats with the extra leg room, and hence knows the emergency-protocols spiel better than the flight attendants.

He should have racked up enough frequent-flyer points by now to spend the rest of his life travelling the world for free.

TUESDAY

NEWS breaks that Cronulla are under investigation for allegedly breaching the salary cap.

It could all be a storm in a teacup. Alternatively it could be a Melbourne Storm (circa 2011) in a teacup, in which case it might be time for Shire residents to turn their porch lights back on.

WEDNESDAY

So here we are, last round of the season, and it comes down to one game.

If the Sharks win, Old Bull Mike Trypas is the Herald tipping comp champion. If the Bulldogs get up, it’s our own James Gardiner.

As for yours truly, it’s been a rebuilding year.

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