DeadCast: Balls! 32 feat. Sonny Bill Williams, The Ranfurly Shield, The Black Caps and Liverpool

Aaron Hawkins from Radio 1 in Dunedin and DeadBall’s Duncan Greive discuss the week in sport, including a spectacular effort by the Black Caps in Bangladesh and the unveiling of yet another new schedule from the ICC. We also go at Sonny Bill Williams attempts to become the least likable sportsman in the country, the Stags’ Shield loss and the way Liverpool’s recent travail’s illustrate the danger’s of becoming a millionaire’s toy. BALLS! 032 by Deadball



Filed under Cricket, DeadCast, Football, Premier League, Rugby, Rugby league

4 responses to “DeadCast: Balls! 32 feat. Sonny Bill Williams, The Ranfurly Shield, The Black Caps and Liverpool

  1. Frilly Gristle

    Gotta say Duncan, normally find your comments to be incredibly astute but I want to take issue with your slating of ‘The tight shirted one’. Kind of a dull topic I know but I think at best your comments are unreasonably harsh and at worst shows a kind of stubborn perversity which seems unnecessary and churlish.

    Now all this is based on what is printed and said in the media so maybe there some kind of conspiracy at work but:
    Charges of mercenary behaviour. He took a pay cut to come here, no? O.k so he did a dumb ad for rebel sport- whats the big deal? Plenty of other sporty types indulge in this type of thing.

    He doesn’t deserve to be there. He is there as ‘a right.’ Don’t take my word for his ability, I only played wing for the Greerton U-16’s, but I would say that the large majority of rugby commentators in this country picked him to go on this tour on merit. I heard Gifford this morning backing him, Richard Loe etc etc… In fact I can’t actually think of anyone that hasn’t. So it appears your opinion on his ability may be at odds with many of the great rugby brains in NZ.

    Charges of him being unproven and having done nothing. OK maybe some basis in fact here. He hasn’t won a world cup- did he win a premiership? Thing is I don’t hear SBW going round saying he is fantastic, the best rugby player in the world etc…quite the opposite. He is here to learn blah, blah Now maybe he’s been coached by Tana to win the PR war but we can only really give him credit for what he has said. Reports yesterday about him staying behind for up to an hour to sign autographs after every game, going back to training with his club team Belfast etc etc all paint him as being decent, don’t they? Or is there something I’m missing. What exactly are you basing this on? Does your wife have a crush on him?

    The ski trip. I suppose was dumb. A little blown up though I thought.

    Sorry. I was just a bit perplexed at the vehemence of your attack on him – being on his way to being the ‘most unlikeable person’ in NZ. That has not been my experience at all.
    And I do know at least ten people.
    I don’t know if he’s gonna be great but I think we will surely know after this tour or next years s23. He can’t pull the wool over Henrys eyes surely. Maybe he has the Key zombie eye. Hypnotism. Yes. You must have some of those special lead glasses.

    That’ll be it.

    Good. Sorry to bother you.

  2. Duncan

    Hi Frilly
    Even I don’t normally find my comments to be incredibly astute! made my day. In terms of SBW, to a certain extent I’m indulging in some Doug Golightly style hyperbolic baiting. I do think he’s chasing dollars, because even if he took a pay cut, he knows the endorsements and ancillary income is better in rugby here than in league there. And he broke a contract with a very facile justification to leave. The ski trip thing was super dumb, and shitting on the Kiwis jersey on national TV makes my blood boil. Really unpleasant and disrespectful. Feels like a throwback to the shole ‘state house rugby’ era. Can’t tell who’s stupider, Rebel Sport for putting it to air, or SBW for agreeing to perform it. As an All Black, he might well be great. I actually think there’s a very good chance of it if he’s coached right, and in any case I am nothing like a decent rugby analyst right now. But he just has that taint of the cowboy on him for me at the moment. I guess the core of my issue is the sense that he’s barely worked for the jersey. Australia’s done this stuff for a while, but having the All Blacks fawn over him, take him round the country and hustle him into the team so swiftly is unseemly, and while that maybe reflects worse on the NZRU than SBW/Khoder Nasser, they could’ve turned it down and just done the work. point taken though, hope this explains the source of the enmity a bit.

  3. Frilly Gristle

    Astute reply.

    Still not convinced by the ‘barely worked for the jersey’ part. The guy played (inarguably?) a good to great season of NPC, previous to that European rugby at a high standard. I’m sure there have been a few selected on the same experiences or less. Toeava played only 8 games of NPC before being selected (only one starting) , Mccaw something similar I think, probably others…Plus ahead of those greenhorns he has had plenty of big game pressure in the other code, so crowds shouldn’t phase him- only fire him up I’d expect.

    Anyway I guess only time will tell.

  4. Aaron Hawkins

    I could be drawing a very long bow, but is he playing up the ‘heel’ card intentionally, building a character that potentially doesn’t exist, or at least exaggerating his inherent traits, for the sake of ‘entertainment’? Perhaps with encouragement of agents and/or managers? Every narrative needs a bad guy, and in the lucrative world of sports merchandising, the surly superstar is a big draw in the adolescent market. He may not have the insanity/flair of a Chad Ochocinco (nothing a ghost-written Twitter feed couldn’t take care of, right?) but you can’t discount the cultivation of the merceneray/cowboy/rogue character in the hallowed Hall of Heroes that makes up the All Blacks brand. Playing with fire, obviously, but with good management/spin could be less disastrous (athletically and publicly) than denying its presence and risking a (Jesse Ryder / insert top flight NRL disgrace here) situation.

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