Does this sound familiar? Raiders irate as Carney signs with Roosters
BRAD WALTER AND CHRIS BARRETTJuly 3, 2010
Boom winger Justin Carney has ensured the tensions between the Raiders and Sydney Roosters remain high before tomorrow's game in Canberra by announcing he will join the Bondi Junction-based club next season. Carney will follow namesake Todd Carney and former Canberra centre Phil Graham to the Roosters, while Raiders officials suspect star fullback Josh Dugan is also planning to join them after declining an upgrade and extension of his contract. Justin Carney, who has not played since breaking his leg last season, rejected a new two-year deal from the Raiders to sign with the Roosters until the end of the 2012 season.
MAROONS prop Matt Scott isn't sure what was more embarrassing - that he and new North Queensland teammate Arana Taumata rushed in to prematurely celebrate what they thought was a winning field goal in last weekend's match against Cronulla or that he was left with a giant zipper down his forehead after the pair clashed heads. Scott, who has been in outstanding form in the first two Origins, has been copping a ribbing from Maroons teammates after being forced to wear headgear at training to protect the 11 stitches in the wound. Taumata, who was making his debut for the Cowboys after being released by Wests Tigers, escaped without injury. ''He might have a bruise but that's about it,'' Cowboys media manager Tim Nugent said of the boom playmaker, who will this week play for the club's Queensland Cup feeder team, Mackay. Asked about the stitches at the Maroons Sunshine Coast camp, Scott said: ''I wish I had a good story to go with it.''
BLUE BLOOD WINS
NSW rookie Michael Gordon wouldn't be playing for the Blues in Wednesday night's Origin if he had listened to the urging of his Penrith captain Petero Civoniceva, who wanted the goalkicking winger to declare his allegiance to Queensland. Gordon, who grew up at Cabarita near the border, is eligible for both states after playing for Tweed Heads Seagulls in the Gold Coast competition and has already played for Queensland Residents before joining the Panthers. ''There has been a bit of a tug-of-war over Michael Gordon,'' Civoniceva said. ''I have been trying to twist his arm ever since I moved down to Penrith to get him to play for Queensland but he is totally against it. I think he has played for Queensland Residents but he said he was sick at the thought. It is going to be such a proud moment for him on Wednesday night and I am just happy for him.''
IF THE Blues fail to stop Queensland achieving a series clean sweep in Wednesday night's Origin finale, perhaps they should look more closely at the form of the teams from which the players are drawn. Assuming the Storm had their competition points restored, more than half of the NSW squad are from teams outside the top eight. In contrast, 13 of the 17 players in the Maroons side play for teams in the top eight. Somehow 12th-placed Cronulla have the equal highest number of representatives in the NSW team (three) - the same as second-placed Penrith. But Melbourne, Wests Tigers and South Sydney have no players in the Blues squad and Greg Bird is the Titans sole representative. Of the 30 players used by NSW in the series, 15 have been selected from top eight teams and 15 from teams outside the top eight.
DOGS' UNHAPPY PUP
CANTERBURY'S recent signing splurge on playmakers does not have ramifications only for veteran No.7 Brett Kimmorley. Emerging Bulldogs five-eighth Aidan Sezer, one of the hottest prospects in the NYC Toyota Cup, is far from pleased that the club has splashed out on two other young halves, Trent Hodkinson and Kris Keating, given he rejected a bigger offer from the Sydney Roosters last year. Sezer is wanted by eight NRL clubs and is trying to get out of his contract with Canterbury.
NORTH QUEENSLAND stars Matt Bowen, Ben Harris and Steve Southern have used the club's bye weekend to promote the game in the Northern Territory and have spent the past two days visiting indigenous health centres and hospitals, conducting coaching clinics and signing autographs at the Alice Springs Show.