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By Jeremy Sollars

Finally the NRL officialdom has had enough and it’s about time. NRL CEO Todd Greenberg called out Sharks coach Shane Flanagan and Manly coach Trent Barrett for their post-game comments after their sides were bundled out of the premiership race.
Flanagan’s performance after the Sharks loss to the Cowboys in what was an electrifying game was I thought an appalling show of poor sportsmanship at the time.
Greenberg rightly said it was not the men in the middle who lose games and while there would always be mistakes made by refs it is time coaches and players took responsibility for their own performances.
At a time when rugby league is struggling for bums on seats, petulant outbursts from coaches in post-game press conferences does nothing but diminish the game.
I would like to see the NRL take things a step further – surely I am not the only person who is fed up with the continued sniping by players at referees during matches. It is something that has crept into the game that is also a bad look. It does not happen in Rugby Union or AFL and in a soccer game any player who questioned or back chatted a ref in the manner league players do would soon find themselves sitting on the sideline.
As Todd Greenberg and others have said – there is no long queue of youngsters putting their hand up to take on a refereeing role. Can’t imagine why.
Pay players as much as you like – can the salary cap if you choose, fling open the gates to encourage spectators to the game but if there is not a man or woman in the middle with a whistle then there is no game.
Time for the big boys to recognise that their actions have repercussions far beyond the microphone. Man up and take your medicine – both coaches would have won far more fans if they had acknowledged the wonderful efforts of their opponents instead of bagging the bloke with the whistle.
– Casey
ORIENTEERS TAKE ON AMIENS
Competitors from as young as 10 to 85 made up the 180 orienteers from across Australia and a contingent from overseas navigated their way through the Amiens forest last weekend for two days of Orienteering in Qld Championships.
Among the winners was Warwick’s Simeon Burrill who won the Men’s Under 21 event. Earlier in the year, Burrill competed in the Junior World Championships in Finland.
Orienteering is growing popularity as a sport and on the weekend it was easy to see how and why it is such a family oriented sport. Parents and children can compete side by side and enjoy the outdoors together.
Bullecourt Bounders hosted the event in conjunction with Toowoomba club Range Runners. Local representative Liz Bourne was delighted with the event, but had her hands full when one of the junior female competitors injured her knee in a remote location and had to be stretchered out of the forest.
Both inter-state and overseas competitors praised the weekend’s courses which are rated by many as some of the best they have seen because of their diversity.
FINALS BUZZ
There is the fizz of finals football in the air after an amazing start to the NRL finals. What a smorgasbord of great games. If you are a League fan and didn’t enjoy week one of the finals then you are very hard to please.
Nail-biting finishes, amazing come-from-behind wins, Cam Smith’s record breaking game and, of course, heart break and losses. You can tell there will be more stings in the tail of the 2017 finals before we get to the GF.
The Melbourne Storm still look warm favourites but were not at their very best against the Eels. They still found a way to win and are sure to iron out a few glitches during their week off.
Roosters fans were cock-a-hoop after they stole a win from under the Broncos noses. While the Roosters enjoy a week off, the Broncos can expect to be doing plenty of work after copping a verbal caning from their normally tight lipped coach.
The Panthers closed the door on the Sea Eagles season in an impressive performance.
There was none more impressive than the Cowboys, who it seems don’t mind giving their supporters and coach heart palpitations, leaving it until the last gasp to snatch victory from the Sharks.
And so the carnival roles on.
This week the Broncos host the Panthers with the rumour mill in overdrive suggesting captain Matt Moylan is set to make a surprise return. Reports suggest it is doubtful that the Broncos captain will recover from his hamstring problem to join the team.
Hard to see the Broncos playing worse than they did last week, and I doubt there is much more improvement left in the Panthers. Broncos to redeem themselves at Suncorp.
The Cowboys feature in another thriller when they meet the Eels in the second semi-final. No tomorrows if you lose here. The Cowboys go into the game again as underdogs with the Eels expected to win, but that means little to the Cowboys who have shown they fear no side. There are more mouth-watering match ups to look forward to in this game. The Cowboys probably shouldn’t win, but after last week you just have to believe. The impossible they can do – miracles take them just a little longer.
– Casey’s TIPS
Queenslanders to stand tall – Broncos and Cowboys
THEY CAME AND TRIED
Organisers of the Mallet Players Come N Try Day at the Stanthorpe croquet facilities were pleased with the number of prospective players who attended their open day on Saturday.
It rounded out a busy period for club members who have been juggling normal fixtures, selling raffle tickets and preparing for the Come N Try morning. Lucky winner of the annual raffle was L. Hagaman. The funds raised from the raffle will contribute to the costs associated with the coring and sanding of the greens.
The golf croquet group pitched in to set up the field in preparation for the Come N Try day while many others were busy cooking up a storm for a special morning tea. The group was joined by an unexpected but special visitor who surveyed the goings on from the safety of a nearby gumtree – a koala.
First on the itinerary was golf croquet. Captain Elaine Brown mentored the guests and members. One of the guests even scored a hole-in-one, which he modestly attributed to good luck.
Association croquet began at 11.30am, under the experienced guidance of qualified coaches Pat Schnoor and Margaret Dickenson. Three guests and three club members who had not previously played this game joined in the fun. These matches normally run for about two hours, so the players retired well before that and enjoyed the lunch break.
Following the break, guests joined the group of experienced players in their first game of gateball. Andrea Denkewitz refereed the game and guided the new players. The novices played extremely well during the three-game match. Some accurate strokes and a bit of rivalry made for interesting and enjoyable play. The club anticipates several will join the ranks shortly.
If you have any inquiries, give Sharyn a call on 4681 2186 or drop in to the croquet greens on Tuesday, Wednesday or Friday mornings.
ACCIDENT SHAKES RUGBY LEAGUE COMMUNITY
The thoughts and prayers of the rugby league community have been with a Goondiwindi family involved in a single vehicle accident as they travelled Clifton last weekend for grand final games. The incident has shaken the entire rugby league community.
As a result of the accident the under-14 grand final was cancelled and the Goondiwindi Blue and the MIT Jets/Gremlins declared joint winners.
The girls League Tag grand final between Goondiwindi and Tenterfield was postponed to a date to be decided however on Monday it was announced that out of respect, the Goondiwindi girls would not contest the final handing the premiership to Tenterfield.
Two of the scheduled grand finals were decided on Saturday. In the under-12 game Tenterfield defeated Wattles 30-22 and in the under-16 game Goondiwindi Blue had a 24-16 win over Collegians Blue.
A Go Fund Me account has been set up by the GJRL to help support the family involved in the accident. All monies raised will go directly to helping with rehabilitation expenses for all involved. Donations can also be made directly to the club’s bank account if preferred. For further details, contact the Goondiwindi Junior Rugby League or visit their Facebook page.
BILLYCART WASHUP
The rivalry was intense as competitors in each round of the 2017 Billycart Bash lined up in the shadows of the Ballandean Pyramid. Most importantly Billycarters of all ages, spectators and organisers had a great time. The maximum speed clocked down Jacobsen Road this year was 48kmph. In a nod toward the high standard of carts and drivers there were only three minor incidents on the track and most importantly no injuries.
Keeping the win “in house” in the opens event was Ballandean State School acting principal, Sue Evans, racing one of the stable of Haynes Racing Carts. For her efforts, Evans took home a trophy and won the V8cuper car driving experience at the Holder performance Driving Centre, Norwell. She is sure to get an adrenalin rush when she takes up the Hot Laps offer. The major prize once again kindly donated by Sirromet Wines.
Winners from the 5-7, 8-11, and 12-15 age categories all received a trophy and the first place getters picked up a $40 voucher from Bendigo Bank Stanthorpe community branch. There are some familiar names from previous Billycart Bash events as the youngsters progress through the ranks and improve their skills.
Category winners
5-7 age group sponsored by Landmark Ballandean:-1st Lilly Simpson; 2nd Ruby Galvin; 3rd Amelia Perkins
8-11 Age group sponsored by Speranzas Mobile Welding: – 1st Brendan Wells, 2nd Hunter Robertson; 3rd Zane Daley
12-15 Age Group sponsored by Wilshire and Co:-1st Sidney Hollingsworth; 2nd Allegra Daveson; 3rd Mathew Pickham.
Opens sponsored by Lindsay Transport: – 1st Susan Evans; 2nd Tom Scott; 3rd Kerri Muller.
The Schools Challenge was won by Stanthorpe State High (Sidney Hollingsworth) and the Pride of Eukey race was won by Kerri Muller.
Organisers wish to thanks the many sponsors, the small army of volunteers, entrants and spectators who again helped to make this Ballandean State School fund-raiser another success.
Photos of the day are available for purchase at www.shaneandersenphotography.net.bash
WREN GRABS THE ATTENTION
Dianne Wren caught the attention of all her fellow players last week during the golf croquet games when she executed a clever jump Shot from two feet out, and her efforts bought play to a halt.
Shirley Page and Justin Liddy each landed a hole in one, and on a day where skills were well and truly on display Elaine Brown and Shirley Page had the top aggregate score of 11.
In game one, Val Fancourt and Dianne Wren had a 13-10 win over Shirley Page and Bev Sullivan. Elaine Brown and Justin Liddy, each played two balls and the game ended in an 11-all draw. Both scored six with one ball and five with the second.
Game two was a triples game and Elaine Brown, Val Fancourt and Justin Liddy played Dianne Wren, Bev Sullivan and Shirley page. This game also finished in a 10-all draw. Scores in all the games played this week illustrate just how even the competition is at the moment.
McMILLAN BREAKS DROUGHT
On Saturday, a good field turned out for the single stableford played at the Wallangarra Golf club. Winner, Brendan McMillian ended a short drought when he finished one clear of runner-up Kevin Williams. Tony Murphy took out the captain stakes and topped off a good day by taking the approach on the 14th and snaring the birdies nest on the seventh. Steve Hampstead didn’t go home empty-handed; he took the pin shot on the 15th.
It will be busy on the Wallangarra greens this weekend. A single stroke will be played on Saturday and will be followed by the annual Golf World Day Two Ball Ambrose, on Sunday. Cost of Sunday’s game is $25 per person and lunch is included. Tee off is between 9am and 9.30am. Grab your partner for an enjoyable day. Golfers and non-golfers are all welcome.
WIN FOR THORN
Ray Thorn has been a stalwart of the Stanthorpe Sporters Club for many years, and this week the stalwart of Sunday golf in Stanthorpe bagged himself a competition win. Ian Anderson played well to grab the offering for the runner-up and also shot the Best Gross score of the round. The run-downs went the way of John Rawlings and Phil Zikan. There were no takers for the pin shot on the 12th but it was Brendon Barker who took pin at the 17th and also the Pro Pin. Sneaking off with the meat trays on Sunday were winners Jordy Barker and Peter Goodsir. Sporters tee off at the same time each Sunday – between 8am and 8.30am each Sunday. Visitors and first time players are always made very welcome.
THREE TIMES A BREEZE FOR WATERWORTH AND O’BRIEN
The Stanthorpe Foursomes championships was decided last Sunday, an alternate shot event played over 27 holes. The team of Matt Waterworth and Mick O’Brien returned a winning score of 117 to continue their dominance in this event, taking the title for the third year running.
Taking the Second division title was the team of Graham Tonkin and Ron Batterham who needed 134 for the round to take the win. The Best nett scores in A Division went to Tom Fittock and Alan Kerr and in second division it was the pairing of Angelo Maugeri and Aaron Simmers.
The ladies event, also played over 27 holes, came down to an extra hole play-off before Lynette Ludlow and Racheal Hendry claimed the title. Neta Thouard and Lorraine Evans, unsuccessful in the play off, did however end up with the best nett in the ladies event.
The men’s Foursome event was sponsored by Andersens Carpets and Lyn Ludlow and Mandy Benussi sponsored the ladies’ foursome event.
HANCOCK NAMED FOR HISTORY MAKING GAME
Stephanie Hancock will tick off yet another box in her long and illustrious career in Women’s Rugby League after her selection in the Jillaroos team this week to play in a history-making match against the Papua New Guinea Orchids in Port Moresby later this month.
With the World Cup on our doorstep, Jillaroos coach Brad Donald sees the game as a great opportunity to showcase the female game in rugby league-crazy New Guinea and a unique chance to test his side against another World Cup nation in an away international.
Even for Hancock, one of the most capped Jillaroos in the side, playing in PNG in front of a packed and passionate PNG crowd away from home on 23 September will be a new experience.
The Harvey Norman Jillaroos and Prime Minister’s XIII squads will also be involved in a series of events, community visits and coaching clinics while on the ground in Papua New Guinea
FOUR FINISH ON 40
Members and guests played a single stableford event for the Laurie and Val Newley Memorial event, on Saturday at the Stanthorpe Golf Club. The annual event was again sponsored by the Newley Family.
In the men’s event four players retuned a score of 40 points. After a consuming countback, it was Max Hunter who emerged as the winner, relegating Rob reeves to second post while Ian Pickering and Richard Reardon, settled for the run down.
Pin shots on the day were awarded to Rob Reeves at three, David Burgess at12 and Phil McGreevy at 17. Pro-pins went to Rob Reeves at 1/10, Simon Shannon at 5/14 and Matt Waterworth at 9/18.
Things were a little more clear-cut in the Ladies event where Margie Locke finished the round with 39 points and a two-point advantage over Tric Fittock to claim the prize. Margie Locke had best approach at 17.
The run down went to 38 points for the men and 35 for the ladies.
The club is hosting the Darling Downs Vets next Monday. Players will be hoping there is no repeat of the outcome of the Vets last visit. The game was over after a couple of holes after a downpour caused play to be abandoned.
There is no doubt we would welcome the rain, however after a full 18 holes are completed if the weather gods don’t mind.
Next Saturday’s club competition is a single stableford which sponsored by Ron and Annelle Batterham. Tee off is from 11am and the time sheet is on the board at the club.
SERIOUS COMEPITTION ON THE RANGE
There was some serious competition on the Inglewood Sporting Shooters range last weekend in the Field Rifle Rimfire Competition.
In the 100 metre Buffalo event, it was Ross Jackson who picked up a win with Tom Donald and Ebony Privitera filling the minor placings.
The 50 Metre Rabbit shoot was won by Ray dudgeon who outscored Ross Jackson and Tom Donald again finished in the placings.
The 50 Metre Standard shoot gave Ray Dudgeon another win on the day while Rechelle Privitera picked up another placing as did Ross Jackson.
This Sunday’s scheduled Black Powder Seneca Run will be dependent on bushfire conditions. Follow the club’s Facebook page for up to date information.
ANOTHER WIN FOR DALBY
Rival sporting teams must be wondering just what is in the water in Dalby. After wrapping up wins in Rugby League and Rugby Union last weekend, Dalby added a win over the Warwick Redbacks in the AFL 2nd Division to their growing trophy cabinet.
In the opening quarter, it was the Redbacks who took the early advantage leading by eight points. At the end of the second half prior to the main break they had increase their lead to 10 points. Dalby fought back in the third quarter as their experience started to tell. In the final quarter they extended their lead and at the full time hooter had extended their advantage to 18points. The final score 8.12(60) to 6.6(42).
Redbacks coach Peter Millard said although his team played with great commitment the best side won on the day.
Ben Heppell kicked three majors for the Redbacks while Nick Donges Kris Millard and Cameron Peterson each landed a goal. The Redbacks side included six players in their first season of AFL and Millard was full praise for their efforts.
Dalby were unable to secure a win in the Women’s grand final – going down by 39 points to the Tigers.
University were successful in the A Grade grand final. They defeated Goondiwindi by 44 points.
GEARING UP FOR CRICKET SEASON
With the local Rugby League season fast becoming a mere memory, attention in both Warwick and Stanthorpe turns to the impending cricket seasons.
Both centres have held their respective AGMs and there have been no changes at the helm in either association.
In Stanthorpe, Luke Brady has been returned as association president. Peter Nimmo retains the role of secretary and Alan Cameron, treasurer. In Warwick, Michael Bourke once again takes the reins, notching up a 21-year stint on the committee. Greg Payne will take up the role of secretary along with his role as Umpires co-ordinator. Geoff Thorley returns as Treasurer.
Luke Brady expects the season to take a similar pattern to last season with 5 teams including a side from Tenterfield. Games will be 40 overs in the main with T20 games included during the rep season.
Warwick, meanwhile, expect eight teams to nominate this season. All sides will play in the fixture competition with the top four playing for the A Grade title and the bottom four playing for the B grade title.
The Warwick, association will also investigate adopting some of the new ICC rule changes.
Fixtures in both areas are scheduled to begin in early October.
ILL HEATH PLAYS A PART
Ill heath impacted numbers playing in the association croquet games last week, but there were a few hearty souls who made it on to the court.
Grace Howard began with a flourish during a break of six, but it was Pat Schnoor who came through to take the win defeating Val Richards and Grace Howard 26 – 14 after one break of four and two breaks of three in the game. Margaret Dickenson had a win over Effey Russell after scoring a break of four and one of three. The final score 23-17.
WALLABIES FANS HAVE HOPE
Despite squandering a 10-point lead, the Wallabies draw with the Springboks last weekend has given rugby fans some hope of better things to come.
The draw was Australia’s second against South Africa, the previous draw also coming in Perth back in 2001 when the rugby landscape was a little brighter.
It was a game of missed opportunity for the Wallabies, and while there is still work to be done there were some good signs.
With the drama surrounding the axing of the Western Force it was great to see a large crowd out in support of the Wallabies, but there is undoubtedly still plenty of passion surrounding the decision.
AFL POPS UP SOME SURPRISES
Upsets in finals footy were not confined to the NRL. Week one of the AFL finals also had its share of dramatic wins.
The 2017 finals opened with the Adelaide Crows proving too strong for GWS. In the battle of the Cats, it was the Tigers who earned themselves a week off when they thumped Geelong. Tigers fans now daring to believe they might break their 30 plus year premiership drought and also get the week off.
On Saturday, the Sydney Swans dominated Essendon and live to fight another day. The West Coast Eagles stole a win in extra time and sent Port Adelaide packing for the final time this season.
Buddy Franklin is in outstanding form and against Essendon turned on a Buddy Masterclass. It is difficult to see the Cats troubling of Buddy is on song on Saturday.
GWS meet the Eagles on Saturday night in their bid to make history and stay alive in the finals.

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