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    Majak millions? Daw wide open

    30/08/2018 - Author: admin

    Majak Daw is out of contract and, as yet, there have been no significant talks between North Melbourne and his management.
    Nanjing Night Net

    There’s nothing sinister in this delay. Daw has only played five games and is yet to establish himself as a regular senior player in his fourth season. Players in that position aren’t normally high on a club’s list of contractual priorities.

    Except that Daw isn’t a typical five-game, key-position player. He’s a powerful and arresting athlete with a unique cultural identity and, in terms of generating discussion and media, might be North’s greatest asset since Wayne Carey.

    Certainly, no other North player brings an SBS dimension to a club that often finds itself playing way off Broadway and is seldom seen under Friday night lights.

    Carey was the game’s best. Daw is unproven. In the course of last year, there were some within North’s football department – including coaches – who harboured doubts that he would make it. He has potential, but he’s very much the unfinished work. Brad Scott suggested Daw might take another five years to peak.

    He is a magnet for media, but not the ball.

    Daw, thus, is not an easy player to price in the football marketplace. Most players are easily slotted into a particular pay bracket, by dint of of their performances and potential. Daw is not so easily classified. His profile and potential exceed his output, but it’s arguable that he’s worth more to North than to, say, Collingwood. In an attempt to gain some some idea of how the market regarded shares in Majak, this column quizzed a quartet of list management/contractual experts from rival clubs. The responses were remarkably similar, almost uniform.

    They saw Daw as a player of significant athletic talent, who had not yet shown footy smarts. They also recognised what he meant to North, a club that struggles for profile and support, as a business proposition and branding device.

    All four of these officials surveyed felt Daw, an upgraded rookie who had only a one-year deal from last year, should be given a two-year deal and the consensus was that he ought to be paid in the vicinity of $230,000-$260,000, with a couple saying he ought to have “scope” to earn more if he played a certain number of games.

    Daw is anything but average, but the list managers considered that he was worth roughly the average wage for an AFL footballer (about $250,000), a judgment that balanced his athleticism and exciting traits with the fact that he’s played five games and there are still doubts about the heights he will reach. As one list manager observed, comparisons with Nic Naitanui were extravagant based on what he had done to date.

    “He’s a fair way off it still,” he said, adding that North would do well to give him potential to earn more than $300,000 if he played regularly. This was another shared judgment – that North and Daw would be best served by giving him a contract that rewarded him for playing games, perhaps with trigger clauses whereby he would get a sling when he reached particular thresholds like 15, 20 and 25 games.

    It was also said that Daw could earn a fair portion of his next contract via the Additional Services Agreements (ASA), the capped marketing deals that are given to players for promoting the club, dealing with sponsors and so forth. Daw already receives a modest sum from the AFL as a multicultural ambassador and, clearly, there’s vast possibilities for that kind of extra salary cap work.

    Daw is an intriguing football prospect. He has had one spectacular game, booting six goals, against weak opposition (the Bulldogs), in which he demonstrated stunning attributes. Yet, six days later, he seemed lost on capacious Subiaco, fumbled and was subbed off. North fared better kicking to the more footy-smart Aaron Black.

    Which will prove the real Majak? It’s too soon to say. North, which punted on him when he was a low-risk investment, will have to raise its stake.

    This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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    Conflicting stories of a fateful night

    - Author: admin

    Police are called to Corey Norman’s home in the early hours of Sunday morning, April 21. Three NRL footballers are said to have been locked out of the home by a woman who would later claim one of them, South Sydney’s Ben Te’o, had struck her.
    Nanjing Night Net

    When police arrive, the woman leaves in a taxi, which takes her home. But not being able to pay for the taxi, she travels to a nearby police station. Officers there take her to a hospital, where she is treated. It is Fairfax Media’s understanding that the officers ask her whether she is willing to make a complaint against Te’o, a Queensland State of Origin back-rower. She declines.

    What happened prior to the phone call being made remains the subject of intense speculation, which varies significantly depending who is talking.

    What appears not up for debate is Te’o had been with Norman at a Brisbane nightclub on the Saturday night. Darius Boyd was also there, having played for Australia against New Zealand on Friday night in Canberra. Te’o and Norman left to find a taxi, and were joined by Boyd and the woman, Katie Lewis. They left for Norman’s home in Ashgrove.

    Some time later, sources close to Te’o said that Lewis began hitting Norman with a high-heeled shoe. Norman and Te’o went into a room and shut the door. Lewis then began hitting the door, according to the source. Norman is then said to have opened the door in an attempt to convince her to stop, at which time Te’o’s assertion is he was attacked with the shoe. Later, he had a photograph taken of a lump on his temple.

    Souths officials are believed to have had him medically assessed following his return to Sydney. Photographs were also said to have been taken of the damage to the door. After the alleged incident which led to Lewis saying she had been struck repeatedly by Te’o, the Rabbitohs player left for his brother’s house. Norman phoned him a short time later and said that Lewis was still present, and he could not convince her to leave. Sources have said she began loading possessions into a garbage bag.

    Boyd’s wife Kayla said she was aware of the Brisbane incident, but was unable to reveal any details. ”I am not worried about it and besides that I really have no comment,” she said.

    This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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    These pedigree Cats have found a cunning way to run free

    - Author: admin

    Putting to one side its most recent outing and first loss of the season, the Geelong of 2013 has shown a new way to play attacking football, bringing a difference to its game that other teams don’t have or won’t attempt – yet.
    Nanjing Night Net

    The “mature moggies” of Jimmy Bartel, Steve Johnson, Joel Corey and Corey Enright, plus the injured Paul Chapman, have been joined by “killer kittens” Allen Christensen, Mitch Duncan, Billie Smedts, Taylor Hunt, Cameron Guthrie and the lightning Steven Motlop.

    They form an irresistible cocktail of experience and enthusiasm that sees them sitting second on the ladder. Chris Scott has Geelong playing in a somewhat unconventional manner in some areas that, to the casual observer, might seem almost foolhardy.

    The Cats can appear reckless at times, save for the fact that, until they ran into the Magpies last Saturday, they kept on winning.

    When observing Geelong, three things become apparent about its style of play. First is the ability to move the ball through the centre square and corridor, sometimes referred to as the ”Geelong highway”.

    It is especially good at getting the ball into this area from its defence. If you watch Geelong from behind the goals, you will see players ”walk” one-on-one opponents out of this area, to allow pinpoint passes to a teammate who has got free.

    The Geelong players form two loose ”line-outs” along the centre square ”wings” and hold their width to allow the free man space to run and create a forward entry.

    Collingwood had success negating this tactic by getting any players in an “off-ball” position (the wing furthest from the ball) to stand five to 10 metres inside their Cats opponents, so they might be first into the corridor to intercept.

    Secondly, Geelong likes to support its defence by always creating an “extra” or “spare” player, by way of either a wing-rollback, a seventh defender (Bartel last week), or allowing one of its half-backs to drop off an opposition half-forward who plays high or as an extra midfielder.

    Collingwood countered this at times by holding its high half-forwards and, more importantly, playing three genuine talls in the forward 50 – separating the Cats defenders and not allowing them to become the ”third man” in any aerial contest.

    Last is Geelong’s tactic of the ”forward handball”, especially at stoppage situations or in general play under extreme pressure. These super-talented Cats will run at any ”covering” defender and handball over his head to a vacant space, to allow other teammates to run onto the loose ball.

    At least the opposition this week, Port Adelaide, has a coach in Ken Hinkley who was previously a major part of the Geelong football club, and knows what makes it tick.

    The opposition analyst works in this role for an AFL club.

    This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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    Bob Murphy: Heroic gestures and men of action set the standard

    - Author: admin

    ”You guys took a lot of big hits out there tonight.” – John Van Groningen
    Nanjing Night Net

    I drove out to Southern Cross Grammar in the western suburbs this week with my teammate Jarrad Grant, for a reading session with some grade prep children. This is unusual because generally we’re asked to head out to schools to take footy clinics and talk about healthy eating. I’m an expert on the food pyramid.

    I told the little kids who were sat cross-legged on the floor that I had a son who was in grade prep, too. This was a mistake, because for the next two minutes they all looked around the room to see if he was sitting among them. To clear up confusion and regain control of my class, I started to read and a hushed silence fell over them.

    Marngrook: The Long Ago Story of Aussie Rules begins with one of the elders, Wawi, coming across a possum, which he kills, skins, then ties up with rubbery tendon and stuffs with emu feathers to make the very first marngrook (or football).

    Wawi gives the ball to the little ones, including Jaara. After taking off with the marngrook, young Jaara kicks it into the bush and promptly gets lost. He then finds himself in a mini coming-of-age tale.

    It’s hard work getting prep kids to sit together and face the same direction, let alone have them carried away on the same story for too long. But that’s what the power of this story did for them, and for me, too.

    My very first marngrook jumper was that of the Warragul Colts and I had the number seven on the back. I was a Tigers supporter but this was my tribute to Nicky Winmar. He was one of my heroes. The dashing runs, the high marking, the grace. He had it all. Strangely enough, my first day at the kennel was Nicky’s last.

    Driving home to Warragul in the car with Mum and Dad, as I keenly inspected my new Bulldogs training gear, the announcement came over the radio that ”Winmar hadn’t shown for day one of pre-season and would not be playing on”.

    This week it’s AFL indigenous round, as we pay tribute to the indigenous culture of footy and also reflect on the iconic photograph of Nicky at Victoria Park.

    And the Bulldogs play the Saints – Nicky’s two AFL clubs.

    My mate Paddy is a St Kilda supporter and runs a proper pub in Fitzroy. Hanging on the wall in the main bar is that photo of Nicky Winmar defiantly pointing to his stomach. The power of that photo tells you a lot about the pub and a lot about Paddy.

    At AFL House there is a huge mural in the foyer with a montage of images capturing the spirit of footy. The image that jumps out at me is Nicky’s. Like the front bar of my local, it lays down a standard of behaviour, a set of values, an ambition for the future.

    John Van Groningen grew up in California but found his way to Australia and was drawn to the outback.

    John was many things to many people but among his accomplishments, he was the founder of the Red Dust charity that takes sports role models to indigenous communities.

    John was also the chaplain at the Western Bulldogs for the best part of a decade. On a trip to Darwin last year I sat by the pool with John and we chatted about real things – life, death, family, love, community.

    He told me of his plans for the future and how he was about to embark on a major study that would send him to the remote communities of Australia. In his work with Red Dust, John would take role models from different fields, many from sport, and embark on these epic trips into the desert.

    This study he was embarking on had a different bent, though; what John told me that day will stay with me forever. He told me that ”people dream in their first language”.

    John’s hope was that with his study he could go into the indigenous communities of the Northern Territory and find out what kids in those communities really wanted to be, what they dreamt of becoming.

    Tragically, in the months after our conversation, John became very ill. Just before Christmas he died.

    When John and I would talk about coming trips to the Tiwi or Alice, I’d make tentative plans to take my family up into the communities. But there was always a tinge of: ”Yeah, one day I’ll get up there with Justine and the kids … one day.”

    Driving home from John’s funeral, I was overwhelmed with sadness and guilt at never going on one of those trips. My wife reminded me that the door wasn’t closed and that we owed it to John to get up there. These things are a bit like a developing side and the traps that lurk: ”One day we’ll be a good side … yeah, one day.”

    At some point you have to make the decision to just go.

    This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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    Docter lauds stricter policing of players’ foreign treatments

    - Author: admin

    AFL Medical Officers Association boss Hugh Seward has admitted it has historically been ”assumed” – but not always reliably verified – that footballers who have travelled overseas to treat injuries had not breached anti-doping rules.
    Nanjing Night Net

    There would be no room for such uncertainty, Dr Seward said, once the major revisions to the AFL’s medical protocols are formalised following the Australian Crime Commission’s explosive report on drugs and corruption.

    The AFL is still finalising how it will tighten its medical protocols, which will include the introduction of a mandatory medical register. Revised protocols would also make it compulsory for clubs to identify and declare all treatments players received in foreign clinics, Dr Seward said.

    While it has become increasingly popular for AFL clubs to send players abroad to receive cutting-edge treatments, Dr Seward said these expeditions had not been policed as tightly as they will be in the future.

    ”Someone who chooses to travel overseas to have mainstream surgery is quite a different thing to going overseas and going to a clinic where some fringe or dubious practice might be undertaken. I don’t think we’ve had examples of the latter, but I think that’s what they’d be trying to prevent. It was just assumed [previously] that people would be practising appropriately. No longer do we assume that. We want to actually know. I think that’s a difference,” he said.

    ”I think [clubs] have to be able to record specifically what was used so that they’d comply with the [AFL] register, and if the club doctor was concerned that some of the medications might not comply with the code they’d need to check that. It involves a greater scrutiny and recording.

    ”It makes that whole process more complex because the materials that might be used in a foreign clinic would have to be identified and declared, and if necessary if they weren’t on the previously approved list they’d have to be approved.”

    Geelong, in 2007, famously spent an estimated $20,000 to send now-retired player Max Rooke to Germany for treatment with controversial doctor Hans-Wilhelm Muller-Wohlfahrt before that year’s grand final. Rooke, who had suffered a hamstring injury but returned to play in Geelong’s premiership after being injected with a highly filtered extract from calf blood – Actovegin – that improves the circulation of oxygen in humans and thereby aids recovery. The club was open about Rooke’s treatment and the legality of it. Richmond sent Mark Coughlan, who also battled hamstring injuries, to Muller-Wohlfahrt in 2008. Coughlan was injected 102 times with Actovegin during his two-week treatment.

    Fairfax Media is not suggesting that anything that contravened anti-doping rules occurred in Rooke or Coughlan’s consultations.

    Actovegin use is allowed by the World Anti-Doping Agency, though WADA has said for years that it is closely monitoring how the substance is administered.

    Muller-Wohlfahrt, who treated Usain Bolt before last year’s Olympics, says his methods are actually conservative and low-risk.

    This story Administrator ready to work first appeared on Nanjing Night Net.

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