The off-season 2019-2020

Greetings football fans.

For those of you hoping to stay in touch between now and season is the place to do so.

All things sport and anything else for that matter. There won't be a massive number of people around in the off season, but those that are usually pretty good value. I'll drop in from time to time myself, for what it's worth.

All the best.


a's picture

Just wanted to be the 1st to comment so glad this page is up for the off season

christine's picture

I be joining you on here "a" we will leave anonymous back over there for now I am sure he will surface at some stage certainly reminds me of someone who shall remain nameless but only the thinker knows for certain ...

Spartan Warrior's picture

Greetings from the Spartan Warrior,
A big welcometh to those who knoweth me and those who hast found a new home here. Aye, it is a pleasure to once again meet with ye all.
I hast been away for some timeth in combat so to speak. I plan to partake at some point during the off season with thy all.

\Enjoyeth thou grand final footy this weekend.

As a Spartans sword short it’s thrust is still sharp. "Add a step forward to it." A Spartan mother sayeth to her son when he complained that his sword was too short. King Agesilaos also replied when asked why their swords were so short" Because we fight close to the enemy."

As thy Roosters may hast the advantage in strength and reach, the Raiders should not be written off, bring the battle close to where their strength may lie. "Because fear makes each man do his best to shelter his unarmed right side with the shield of the man next to him, thinking that the closer the shields are locked together the better will he be protected." Thucydides on why hoplite armies edge to the right as the battle begins. The Raiders will locketh their shields, it may or may not be enough but will still be worthy of Spartan bravery. Mayeth the best team win thy battle, each are worthy combatants.
It would be remiss of myself not to wish Master Thinker the best for himself and thy family, aye, i thank thee for thy hard work.
It is an honour to has't thee as parteth and organiser of the this site.

The Spartan Warrior hast spoken

newbie from perth's picture

Finally! The Warrior of Sparta returns. Geez, we missed you 😢 but glad you’ve resurfaced 😃. Good to see you here again brother. A few people will be delighted I’m sure.

“Militaturus pergerem manere fortis.”

christine's picture

Spartan warrior
I am going for raiders I feel it is there year , stay on site don't pay attention to the naysayers we still have someone around who shall remain nameless just ignore them it seems to bother them more if you do besides that your welcome to be here Spartan warrior never forget that ...

christine's picture

can I ask what your time away in combat was for if I may ask ( that's if you are aloud to discuss it that is I know in some cases you may not be able to do so ) ???

a's picture

Welcome back Spartan it’s good to have you back please stick around

christine's picture

Spartan warrior
There is another person on the thinkers website trying to portray themselves as you they are referring to me as lady Christine & only you do that but they are using the name anonymous & they make accusations & try to insult people & their intelligence we are sure we all know who it is just don't react too it that's what they want hopefully in time they will get bored if they don't get a reaction & they will go under the rock they came out from or just let us regulars on the site deal with it ...

Spartan Warrior's picture

Greetings all from the Spartan Warrior,
Tis indeed a joyous occasion to see Master Newbie, Master ‘a’ , Lady Christine and others partaking on Master Thinkers site, still. But correct me if 't be true I am wrong Master Thinker but the anonymous feature on this site is to encourageth all to participateth then joineth? Tis feature is not designed to be abused. I has't not been on site for some timeth anon and am unaware of the comments thee speaketh of Lady Christine. but liketh all those who is't may participateth in unruly behaviour, 'twill be their undoing at some timeth. As you sayeth Lady Christine, Master Thinker will be on thy guard. Master Newbie, I thanketh thee for your words of encouragement. ‘possum et ego’ .
I shalt be travelling still so access to this site is limited for myself for the timeth being. Enjoyeth the most wondrous grand final tonight. It is indeed great for rugby league to has't the Raiders participating. I wilt go for the underdog and wisheth for the Raiders to winneth. Either way both teams art worthy combatants.
The Spartan Warrior hast spoken.

Christine 's picture

Not the outcome I wanted with the grand final but good for cooper cronk he deserved it ...

Coach Potato's picture

for the Streak Theorists

# 3 streaks = 10+ to make top4. Tickets
# Only top 3 scorers can win. Boo

1. Storm 5/9/3.... 17
2. Roosters 8/7.... 15
3. Rabbitohs 3/7/3.... 13
4. Raiders 4/3/4.... 11
5. Eels 2/3/4.... 9
E6. Sea Eagles 3/2/3.... 8
E6. Broncos 3/3/2.... 8
8. Panthers 7
E9. Bulldogs 2/4.... 6
E9. Tigers 2/2/2.... 6
E9. Sharks 2/2/2.... 6
E9. Knights 6
13. Cowboys 3/2.... 5
E14. Warriors 2/2.... 4
E14. Dragons 4
16. Titans 2


a's picture

Welcome back Coach

Christine 's picture

Welcome back coach if is about time you surfaced at least
we know it is you

Christine 's picture

That's not the way it was meant to read that said welcome back coach it is about time you surfaced at least we know it is you...

Anonymous's picture

Coach Eugenious

Baggy_Gee's picture

Diseugenious? Eugeneticks?

tigerholic's picture


What a finish to the year, did Ben Cummings give you six more tackles Coachy Boy, be careful he doesn't change his mind.

Anyhow, thanks for a great deal all, welcome back Coach and I make a pledge now to do better next year.

All the best to everyone, I hope the rest of 2019 goes well for you all.

Thanks again Thinker and TLH


christine's picture

You will do better if you stop picking up the slack for rocket just cut him loose ...

christine's picture

I feel bad for raiders but they blew it they do say you have to loose one to win one so maybe next year for them who knows ...

christine's picture

thinker you know your page cuts off after so many weeks of the comp ending can you please remember to keep it open as I can't email you if it closes I have no way to email you ...

mark ashford's picture

Coach Potato
Nice to see you back here, declaring yourself, after a few anonymous posts trying to indicate they were you. I'm not 100 % convinced it wasn't you but hey your back under your original avatar.
It's been so long I've forgotten how your streak theory works but it looks like you have nailed it. Perhaps now the other annnonnnymmoussses will leave us alone. I did enjoy our banter around Panthers/Broncos, maybe we can continue next year.

mark ashford's picture

Congrats on your Chookies win! Controversy yes and I'm sure you would rather have won without refs interference. Due to family commitments I didn't see the game. Various media outlets have claimed the Raiders were robbed whereas others have said the Roosters won fair and square. Either way your Roosters have gone back to back not done for about 100 years when early settlers formed a team called the Broncs and I think played another team called the Broncs.

mark ashford's picture

The Spartan Warrior
You my friend are a welcome poster back on this site.
Were you fighting the Trojans or the Greeks. Doesn't matter it's just good to see you back. Hope you are well and if not let us know.
Your posts are most welcome and enjoyable.

christine's picture

now we just need coach to welcome back Spartan & all is good Spartan is off with another battle for now but I expect things too be civil upon return from both sides that is ...

manyana's picture

Just thought I'd poke my nose in. I'll be checking the "off season" page out occasionally.
Cheers, manyana.

christine's picture

thinker I sent you through an email on a phone let me know if you got it ...

The Thinker's picture

Morning Christine

I did get your email...thank you.

All the best

The Thinker

Baggy_Gee's picture

Not sure if you caught this one Coach, 5/6 in the last 6 seasons the team who came in the top 2 for runs/running metres per game have won the GF. The interesting stat is that 13 other teams had more runs that the Roosters, but each run were less effective. It is interesting that the Raiders were forth in mt/run, and 7th in average mts a game.

mark ashford's picture

You're probably still coming down from the Chooks win but I wanted to ask if you intend to be here on the off season would you please grace us with your SOTW occasionally, as I just love hear what you like.

newbie from perth's picture

@ Mr Ashford
Thanks for the congratulations on my BBB winning the grand final. Yeah, just a little controversy involved but at least it raises the profile of the game and here’s hoping more people (here and overseas) start to take an interest. Unfortunate you couldn’t watch the game brother. It was a tough encounter and a spectacle for sure. Hopefully you have (or will) go online and watch a replay. I’ll be whacking up my “musings” on the game a little later on both here and on the Grand Final page as well. Stay tuned 😃

Yeah, I’ll be frequenting this here “off-season” page for sure and pleased to see you wouldn’t mind me posting a SOTW. It’s growing on ya isn’t it. Ah, the plan is working 😍 No problem with me posting one each week as I have many toons I like and of varying styles. Might make it a Thursday or Friday night thing eh?

You’ve sorta caught me on the hop with this but might just post this one here. I know some out there are frustrated karaoke wannabes (ha-ha) so this one has the lyrics on the screen for you to sing along to. C’mon, you know you wanna.

OK, gotta dash. Have some googling to do on why my bread isn’t rising high enough in my bread machine. Seriously, that’s what’s happened the last 2 loaves I’ve made. Not sure what it is but no doubt I’ll find out soon 👍 Cheers.

newbie from perth's picture

@ Big Pete
You’re more than likely engrossed with the Bathurst 1000 this weekend but when you poke your head in here, just wanna let you know I was thinking of putting up my “predictions” for upcoming EPL matches if you’re interested. I have this little “system” I’m trying to fine tune and it involves “standout” winners for each week. It’s still in its infancy but thought it might be interesting to post the picks here so I’ve got some sort of record for posterity.

Basically it’s just what the “system” predicts who will (or should be) standout winners and is split into home teams and away teams. So far in the first 8 rounds, the results are as follows:

Home Teams
Selections - 15
Winners - 11 @ 68.75%

Away Teams
Selections - 5
Winners - 4 @ 80%

With the break this weekend, I won’t be able to put up Round 9 picks until next week.

All the best and hope you enjoy the Bx weekend. Unfortunately for me personally, it’s not something that “floats my boat” so to speak. But each to their own eh? Cheers.

newbie from perth's picture


Once upon a time, a long, long time ago there were two tribes that decided to go into battle to determine once and for all, who should receive the blessings of the gods for their heroic deeds of the year just passed.

The gods decided these 34 warriors should meet on the battlefield known as the ANZ Stadium at a pre-appointed hour and engage each other in gladiatorial contest to see who would gain the gods’ favour. To the victor go the spoils. This is the tale of that epic battle. Read on if you dare…

It was Sunday the 6th October 2019 and the Sydney Roosters lived the fairytale and became the first team to win back-to-back premierships in 26 years in an engrossing grand final in front of nearly 83,000 fans at ANZ Stadium. Showing their typical grit and defensive effort, the Roosters withstood an enormous amount of pressure from a tenacious Raiders side and somehow survived. They basically defended their way to the ultimate 14-6 triumph. It might’ve been more had Latrell Mitchell not missed those 2 penalties in the 40th and 69th minutes.

The Roosters started (very) well and raced to a 6-nil lead after only 6 minutes. Then Aubusson does his knee in the 14th minute which throws the Roosters’ interchange plans into semi-disarray. Shortly after Aubusson goes off, Victor Radley goes off for HIA. The Raiders start to get back into the game, momentum shifts and it’s all Raiders for the rest of the first half. That dominance continues on for 30 minutes into the second half as well.

OK, so Cooper Cronk gets binned in the 50th minute. That was a harsh call. He tackles one millisecond before Papalii receives the pass but seriously, you’re gonna call that as a professional foul? I suppose in the context of the rules it was correct but really, what’s a little fella to do against a big fella in that situation? Meh! It could possibly be very easy to counter that “six-again” argument (more on that below) with that borderline ludicrous sin binning. Down to 12 blokes and the Raiders still couldn’t get through the Roosters’ resolute defence. I know what that tells me. What does it tell you?

Speaking of that 72nd minute “six-again” drama … here’s my 2c for what it’s worth.

As it turned out, Cummins got the call from Gerard Sutton (and the linesman) letting him know the ball had actually bounced off a Raiders’ player and he immediately changed the call and apparently yelled out “last tackle” 4 or 5 times. Yeah, I understand Wighton saw Cummins waving his arm for six again but that’s no excuse for him (and players around him) ignoring the ref’s calls. A better option would’ve been to have a little chip kick instead maybe. Whatever.

On the live broadcast, Ray “Rabs” Warren called it as off a Canberra player straightaway. Post-match, Peter Sterling reckons it didn’t cost them the game. I’ve seen it countless times and it did indeed come off the Canberra player. I suppose it’s not the deflection off the Raiders’ player that’s got everyone hot under the collar but moreso the gaffe from Cummins in getting it wrong and waving his arm for six again.

Yeah, it was heartbreaking for the Raiders and their fans, especially considering the winning try from the Roosters came shortly after, but that’s life. As I said last week, someone has to win and someone has to lose. That’s just how it is.

As some pundits have mentioned, this grand final will be remembered for all the wrong reasons. And that’s a real shame I reckon. Seriously, if anyone thinks for one moment the Raiders were “robbed” of a grand final win because of that “six-again” debacle, they’re deluding themselves. And I’m not being one-eyed here either. You just need to take an honest overview of the game you watched. No doubt this will be hotly debated for many years to come but I will feel very comfortable in myself believing the Roosters won the grand final fair and square.

I reckon a lot of people will be wondering how the Raiders managed to lose the grand final actually. For the majority of the match they did indeed look like the better team. For obvious reasons (to me at least) they couldn’t find the “knockout punch”. Sort of reminds me of Apollo Creed trying to knock out Rocky in their 2nd fight 💪.

Look, if the Raiders were good enough they would’ve got up but they didn’t so they weren’t. It’s as simple as that I’m afraid. As much as I feel for them with that “6-again” debacle, the truth of the matter is that it wasn’t the thing that lost them the game. Hopefully the Raiders will look back on this over the break and come to realise they let themselves down just a bit and that their inability to make the most of their opportunities (and possession) more than likely was the reason they lost and not because of that one isolated “6-again” drama.

Maybe losing this grand final will spur them on next year and instil some desire to prove to the rugby league world that they are indeed good enough. Jack Wighton was a deserved winner of the Clive Churchill medal. It was an absolutely awesome effort from him. To his credit, Jack was reported as saying … "But we're definitely not going to blame a ref for our loss, we had more than enough opportunities."

The best part of the game for me (obviously) was when Tedesco scored. Keary passes to Mitchell. Beautiful flick pass from Mitchell to Tupou. Daniel then passes to Tedesco. Tedesco runs in and scores. When the roar from the (greatly outnumbered) Sydney fans went up another level when Tedesco got the ball and they realised he was gonna score, it got me so “pumped” it’s almost impossible to describe. Joy? Relief? Happiness? I suppose you could say all three of those actually. I’m sure all my neighbours heard me at that point yelling out a primal scream of “you-rude word starting with an F-beauty”. Man I was pumped! 💪 I still get goosebumps every time I watch that try. Yeah sad I know, but I’ve watched it maybe 10 times so far 😃.

At the end of the day, it was the Roosters’ defence that proved the difference (just like it did against the Storm the previous week) and again, it was when they were up against it in the second half. Their defence was just too strong for the Raiders. They simply stood up and copped everything the Raiders threw at them and survived. One piece of brilliance (luck) in the 72nd minute and bam! 💥

Stats-wise, it was close in a lot of areas but there were quite a few that surprised me and one in particular. Roosters (obviously) had less possession (46%-54%), less tackle breaks (30-39), less offloads (1-19), less effective tackles (82.3%-91.8%), more missed tackles (39-30) and the one that surprised me … the number of ineffective tackles. The Roosters had 38 and the Raiders had 1. Yeah, the Raiders had just one (1) ineffective tackle. At first I thought that was a typo but I checked it on the NRL website and it’s correct. Sheesh!

Anyways, that’s my take on the “big dance” of 2019. I know (for a fact) there will be people who disagree with what I’ve just served up and that’s fine with me. We all have our own opinions and I’m cool with that. All I know is I’ve been as unbiased and honest as I can be and that my BBB have gone back-to-back and I’m very happy indeed. Begurk! 🐔 Begurk! 🐔

OK kids, stay well, keep safe and enjoy life 😍 Cheers…

NuL1F3's picture

Happy Bathurst Day!! :D

BigPeteBx's picture

Good one Newbie - I'm not at the track, but enjoy atmosphere that surrounds The Great Race. I used to work with clubs on canteens up there. Was up there overnight the year the bikies (when Easter bikes were conducted - they are coming back to here, with the 2nd track planned, designed and funded) threw the molotov cocktail into the police compound and set all the electricity/lighting off. Off-Track Events, CBD Party yesterday until 4pm, then the street re-opens for traffic to traverse again. Plenty on the box today pre-race.

Sounds good with your EPL "predictions". I'm in a bit of a nomads tipping comp, with bragging rights only. Will be interesting to view. EPL Comp is all over the shop, as they play on occasions mid-week, Friday night UK time and so forth. Euro quals, FA Cup Rounds etc, comp is often suspended.

Cheers mate and keep well - Big Pete

BigPeteBx's picture

Thanks NuLife (D if that's the initial of your name).

She's Action Jackson on Bathurst Day alright. Bit fresh here yesterday, so the grid girls would have been in freeze mode, especially up at the track. Many don't realise with The Mountain, that it can be piddling down up top and not a drop down in CBD.
Slight breeze ATM, but nice a sunny.
Mustangs/Fords setting the pace - but its a long day at the office Bro.
Chopper going over our house ATM. WIN TV is broadcasting The Great Race. When the jets go over, our house can rattle, if they are low enough. We live approx 1.5km's from the track. Away from race day, it is a public road and traffic is allowed to go two-way. Track is used for several hill-climb events through the year, plus other major dates for race events.

If ever u r down this way (like any others, I haven't met, apart from Johnny Awesome), look me up and I'll take you around the City, explain much history and have lunch/dinner and a few of those lemon squashes that Mark A and Steely talk about.
You drive I talk - it won't be the first time I've done it.

Cheers Champ and keep well - Big Pete in Bx Country.

NuL1F3's picture

Hi BigPeteBx, what a race it was!! I actually have some family there and might be planning a trip either next October or the one after, will definitely have to catch up either way, sounds great! The ':D' from earlier is a happy emote. My real name is actually Markus.

It was strange seeing everyone on T.V. so cold while here in Townsville we are already in the 30s! The mountain certainly did not let us down for drama over the weekend that's for sure!

mark ashford's picture

Hi Big Pete
Not being a huge motor sports fan I channel hopped for a lot of the day but did watch the last half hour. I did think the kiwi McLaughlin who also won pole position drove (with his French partner) an incredible race.
Yet it seemed to me the commentators were not supporting him, is that because he was driving a Ford, or because he's a Kiwi. They seemed to want Van Gisborne (another Kiwi) but in a Holden to win. Help me out here as I'm a novice when it comes to motor sport.

BigPeteBx's picture

Mark - how its going mate.
Supposedly a big year of celebration for Holden at Bathurst 1000, but to me Mustangs have been killing them in the rounds already conducted.
I was with Mustangs, as I am a Ford supporter. It was the livery of Dick Johnson of old and he'd been waiting a while for victory.

Scott Mc, like Shane Van Gisbergen being both Kiwis, were out for it and challenging each other, as they wanted it more than the other. It was a gamble with fuel and it paid off for Ford. Like the NRL Big Dance, the crap will start to flow about the result.

We know what the media is like, especially when you have quite a few ex Holden drivers holding microphones.

Cheers Champ and keep well
Big Pete

BigPeteBx's picture

Gee NuLife - small world. Must let on by others means who they might be. Or just send me surname, as I may know them. I coached a lad years ago in soccer from here whose name was Markus. His family were involved in the building industry.

It was fresh here alright with the change that was blowing over Sthn NSW. I've been to Townsville twice over past many years. One of your Council Engineers came from here and was instrumental in getting your Townsville 500 going.

This year, will be a race that wont be forgotten too quickly, I can assure you.

Cheers M and keep well
Big Pete

mark ashford's picture

Big Pete
My brother is a passionate ford man and said the same thing. A lot of the commentators are xholden guys. Funnily enough my brother being a ford man drives a Landcruiser and I guess I'm a ford man too but drive a Colorado....go figga.
Did see on the news there will be an enquiry.
Just hope sanity prevails.

Christine 's picture

Mark just an update for you I meet with the haematology specialist on 19th November had an ultrasoundtodsy to check on various things like kidneys, liver, spleen, gallbladder due to this fluid retention they are trying to work out what is causing it so I get the results on Thursday May know more then who knows really...

Christine 's picture

That was has an ultrasound today

mark ashford's picture

Thanks for the update. Please keep us all informed regarding your results. Not a lot of fun for you Chris but we are all thinking of you and wishing you the best.

BigPeteBx's picture

Thank heavens Mark we share something in common!

There is media talk & national news, that the second Ford car of Coulthard slowed the race for Scott Mc to take an advantage of Holden. I think it was in a pit drive thru. This week on Gold Coast, the decision gets handed down.
Cheers and keep well - Big Pete

BigPeteBx's picture

Hello Christine - we are thinking of you.
Take care and keep the regulars here, posted.
Big Pete

tigerholic's picture

Hi Everyone

Thought I would grace the off season with a Tigers presence. It's nice to see the friendship that has come from this site, as we all read there are bigger things in life then football.

Christine, I hope you get some positive news out of your most recent tests, I like Mark and BigPete and a lot of others do care and look out for your posts.

My life has been a very different one to what I am used to. As you are aware my wife and I went to Europe from late March through to early June, we walked the Camino Santiago from France through to the coast in Spain, a total of 860kms. The Camino is a spiritual trek that some say can give you closure and or solutions to problems or troubles in ones life.
For me the Camino did affect me, I cam back not ready to l;et go and after taking a few sick days I forced myself back to work, I work in a prison in QLD. I think I came home from Europe an emotionally different person, I can't explain how or why.
On my third shift back at work in June, it was a Saturday night shift, I am a Correctional Supervisor and after hours, weekends and night shifts the supervisor runs the centre from 1800 hours through to 0600.
So, Saturday the 9th June, my third shift back was actually an overtime shift that I had accepted, I had almost completed the shift and had the cups of tea ready for my relief when I got a call from the control room, I was advised that a prisoner had buzzed up on the intercom and stated that he thought his cell mate was dead, from that point on through to lunch time the next day was a bit of a blur.

As you can imagine, this type of incident can be rather traumatic and at times staff that work through these incidents need to talk to someone.
I didn't straight away and it was 2 shifts later that I noticed that I wasn't handling things, I am now aware that after 24 years in the job one's emotional cup can overflow and that is what has happened to me.

This latest incident has seen me off work since June and at this stage not returning until early December but in reality it will be around March. I see a psychologist every fortnight and have seen a psychiatrist.
I have become more self aware, have joined the local gym and have reduced my days of no alcohol to 3 each week.
Physically I feel 100% but it's the mental side that I am still working on.

Anyway, I just wanted to share with those of you that are still posting that there may be others around that are going through personal challenges.

Take care everyone and I'll check in again soon.


manyana's picture

Hi Tiger, I'm glad that you enjoyed your time in Europe, but not so glad about what happened when you went back to work.
I know that working in a prison is very difficult, as my daughter also works in one in Queensland.
Currently she is on Medical leave, and I don't think that she will be going back to work.
At times she has told me about some of the problems that she faced, and none of them were very nice.
I hope that talking to someone is helping you, but you know that you have a lot of friends on this site.
Keep well, manyana.

mark ashford's picture

Thank you for sharing that with us my friend.
I have nothing but respect and thanks for our Police, Ambos, Fireies and Correctional Staff. You guys do all the heavy lifting in our communities and I believe get little or no thanks. 24 years service in what must be one of the most draining jobs on earth is to be commended.
Mate I'm no shrink so won't offer any advice except to embrace your family and friends....keep those you love close and keep believing in your beloved Tigers. No doubt it will take some time but I wish you a full recovery. We love you here on Thinker's site!

tigerholic's picture

Thanks manyana and Mark, your comments mean a lot. I will get through this and be better for it, I don't want to rush back after 24 years of putting others first. If you can email me via the thinker with your daughters details and place of work, I might even know her.

Cheers and talk soon.

BigPeteBx's picture

Evening Tige - not good what I read and have seen it quite a bit.
I have two mates suffering depression and lost my brother last Christmas Eve from dementia aged 63.
We can always turn our back on things, but need to turn and face it sometime. You've had the balls to talk about it here, on a national site.
I take my hat off to you, for getting it again, out in the open.

Just keep that roar in you mate and don't let it down you and make a pussy out of you. You can fight it buddy and fight you will.
We are here for you and even an email to Thinker for more private contact is welcomed.

I see where Marsters may be on a move from Tigers to NQld.

R u that far up north in Qld, or still around Garden City area?

Champ - keep us posted and keep well and do think about the pleasant memories of your trip. Even that thought of getting in the arena, as a matador, just to get a good steak.

Cheers, hang in there and we are here - Big Pete in Bx


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