Teary farewell as Parramatta ace chases his American dream
WEDNESDAY, October 15, was one of the saddest days of my life.
That was the day Parramatta champion player Jarryd Hayne decided to abandon his rugby league career to follow his dream to the USA and have a crack at making it in the NFL.
Emotions were running at a high. But after listening to his press conference, I was satisfied he was making the right decision for himself and his future.
To lose a player of his calibre to Parramatta and to rugby league was a big shock. He will leave a hole that no-one can fill.
Hayne was about to be offered the biggest deal in rugby league history by the Eels but decided to push this aside to follow his dream.
As a huge Parramatta supporter I hope that he does not make it and comes back to the Eels and leads us to a premiership.
However, with the huge respect I have for Jarryd, I wish him all the best and hope that he makes a huge impact on the US public and gets a contract.
His most important message was to all young kids. He said that you should have a dream and that you should follow this dream as far as you can.
It's better to fail following your dream than never giving it a go.
Yes I teared up like Jarryd did when he was talking about all he wanted to do was become a professional athlete and buy his mum a house.
Early A-League shock
TWO rounds of the A-League have been played and if the standard remains at this high level then what a season we are in for.
The Perth Glory have flown out of the boxes to be the only team to win both games.
The Victory, Sydney FC and Adelaide also remain undefeated but have all played out a draw.
The shock so far is that the premiers (Brisbane) and runners ups (Wanderers) from last year are sitting on the bottom of the ladder with both clubs suffering two losses.
There's another 25 rounds left so both of these strong clubs will surely be playing finals football.
BRONZED head statues were unveiled last weekend at Phillip Island, acknowledging three of the greatest riders this country has produced in Wayne Gardner, Mick Doohan and Casey Stoner.
The ceremony had a positive affect on Moto3 rider, 19 year-old Jack Miller, as he rode the race of his life to win his home GP from eight on the grid.
Miller has always had talent but is starting to show maturity well beyond his years. It's a maturity that has seen Honda sign him for next season to race against the big boys, bypassing Moto2.
LAST week's tip Lucia Valentina ran a terrific race in the Caulfield Cup finishing third.
I'll keep her for the Melbourne Cup.
This week's selection is for Brazilian mixed martial artist Jose Aldo to defeat Chad Mendes in UFC 179.
Junior honour board
REGIONAL rugby league awards nights concluded last weekend with the Ipswich Junior Rugby League holding their gala night. Seventeen awards were presented on the night. The winners list is:
- IJRL Player of the Year: Liam Pakau. IJRL Rep Player of the Year: Thomas Mikaele.
- Best & Fairest Mod Player: Dylan McAteer. Rising Star: Rico Aliva.
- Best back on grand final day: Kade McGarrigal. Best forward on grand final day: Nick Hull.
- Mini Coach of the Year: Daniel McKewen. Mid Coach of the Year: Darryl Squires. Mod Coach of the Year: Phil Keats. International Coach of the Year: Alistair Tauaa.
- First Aid Officer of the Year: Ron Newland.
- Mod Referee of the Year: Jake Kelly. Referee of the Year: Daniel Hewitt.
- Outstanding contribution to IJRL: Dane McQueen.
- Life Members Award: Kevin Smith.
- Club championship: Norths RLFC.
- Encouragement Award: Rosewood/Fassifern U13.