The representative break may have given us all time to regroup, time to cool off, time to gather our thoughts, but it certainly hasn’t stopped the flow of questions directed towards Warrior Nation. Is there a drug problem at Mt Smart? Were the players hung out to dry? Has Konrad Hurrell played his last game for the Warriors in the NRL? Was the punishment harsh enough? Should they have been selected this week? Are the players’ actions simply the product of their environment, of a negative culture at the club? How long has it been going on for? Has Andrew McFadden lost the support of the players? Who is to blame? I could go on and on, but I think you get the point.
It’s only in the minutes after the final whistle blows, when you lean back from the edge of your seat, mute the TV and take a deep breath, that you realise how fast your heart is beating. Very briefly you consider whether this kind of carry-on is doing any long term damage to your health.
As you wait for the after-match interviews — your reward of sorts, a few moments both to bask in the glory and suck in the big ones — the rhythm slows, although it will be some time before your heart gets back to its normal resting speed.
The two points are in the bank, the camera focuses in on Monty Betham’s shiny head and you soak in the highlights. Rewind. Play. Pause. How did he do that? Play. You beauty! Rewind. Play. Rewind. Play.
The NRL season is nearly here! Which means it’s time to start safety testing the seatbelts of that Warriors rollercoaster and working up the mental strength to hang on for dear life for yet another year. And while big-name signings have raised expectations all across Warrior Nation, leading in to Round 1 it’s other areas that hold the most intrigue for me. Barring injury, Roger Tuivasa-Sheck will start at fullback, Issac Luke will wear the 9 jersey. But ask ten people what the Warriors’ best centre combination is and you might just get ten different answers. Continue reading Who’ll Take Centre Stage?
As I walked towards the Big Top, two of the biggest drawcards disappeared in the other direction. While Manu Vatuvei and Konrad Hurrell went for a coffee, I sat in my seat and considered the impact their absence might have on the main event. Looking around at the 17,000-plus who had gathered for the Sunday matinee, I could feel the nervous excitement that a game of such significance brings. Win and the Top 4 beckoned. Lose and the Warriors could fall out of the Top 8 completely. Continue reading A Day at the Circus