The Greed of Sonny Bill

After months of speculation in football over Cristiano Ronaldo’s proposed move to Real Madrid, rugby league has demonstrated it’s own greedy side when Sonny Bill Williams announced he’s off to the dark side by joining French rugby union side Toulon.nnThere’s an old adage that “contracts aren’t worth the paper they are written on.” Clearly this is true. And Williams will be equally as confused and angered after he was named in the New Zealand Test side for the World Cup despite stating his intentions of moving to Union.nnI had to laugh at Chris Irvine’s latest blog post on The Times website. It’s amazing how many people can laugh at this, but equally angering how someone who’s doing a job can just turn their back on something like this, despite tying themselves into a binding legal agreement that states they are employed by that club for a certain period of time. There are so many hard working people in this country, and I’m sure throughout that Australia that deserve to be earning much more, and yet Williams cannot wait until his contract expires for his move.nnI can only see one outcome unfortunately and that’s that Williams is allowed to go, but only if Toulon pay current club Canterbury some form of monetary compensation for his services. It’s a sad world isn’t it?nnAS THE SEASON nears its anti-climax – although that may be a bit of an over-exuberant word to use, the wooden spoon battle has albeit been somewhat decided.nnHuddersfield fans will be buoyed after watching their side humiliate Castleford last weekend. We’ve had some very good games this year in Super League and the game down at The Jungle had all the makings of a classic. But in true fashion, the game was a complete whitewash with Huddersfield running riot in the second half.nnWhy then did it end up so one-sided? And why did Castleford capitulate? While this is an impartial website, I think I can safely speak for the majority of Castleford fans when we say we feel we have been utterly disappointed by the people on show this season.nnSince 1999, when we were one game away from making the Grand Final, we’ve shown a steady demise, which can only be blamed on the Board of Directors. They’ve stayed in charge and tried to rectify their mistakes but clearly do not share the views of the passionate hardcore fans that descend down t’lane on a Sunday afternoon.nnMany of the Tigers’ senior officials are blaming the result on a bug that spread through the Cas camp in the run-up to that game. But many people have to look at the circumstances behind why we are bottom, and why we didn’t have the capabilities to put in a fully fit Super League capable squad. For starters, we started the season with a squad of 23 players. That’s not big enough for Super League, and certainly not capable of completing 27+ games per season.nnThis is why I can see why many people are criticising the licensing system, and the removal of promotion and relegation. Cas has had the liberty of playing a weakened squad all season because they knew they were somewhat exempt from relegation. While this goes for all sides, most of the sides that we’ve played have strength in depth and a lot of capable youngsters. Had we have had promotion and relegation this season, I’m pretty much safe to say that the squad would have been much bigger and much stronger.nnI think I can safely say that we expect much better next season, and I’m sure Terry Matterson will also feel this, despite his numerous rally cries which have obviously fallen on deaf ears over the last few weeks.nnTHANK goodness the Paul Cooke saga is finally over. The will he-won’t he debacle has concluded with a brief statement issued by Cooke’s agent and father Roy, in which Cooke junior states his apologies for the recent weeks and recognises his off-field behaviour has to change.nnI’m sure Justin Morgan will also be pleased that Cookie, as he is affectionately known in the rugby league world, has decided to make this statement. Cooke is an extremely talented player and has proved himself on the field. While Hull KR have shown they have a squad capable of coping without him, it will no doubt be a boost to have Cooke’s superb long-range passing complimenting Michael Dobson’s pace and excellent kicking game on the field of Craven Park again.

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