Getting to the sharp end of the football season now with the big AFL showdown this week, and Rugby Leagues showpiece next weekend.
Let’s not get too far ahead of ourselves though, and review the week that was, and have a short sharp look forward to the weekend ahead.
MIDWEEK LEAGUE CUP
There’s a few things The Gurgler likes – Football, early morning weekday sport, and Penalty Shootouts. This week the League Cup in England provided it all.
Your typical Minnow v back-up EPL side (Middlesbrough v Liverpool) was running to schedule this week with a penalty shootout needed to separate the two sides. However in a record 15 kicks per side were required to find a winner.
We do love a penalty shootout, but 15 is a gift that ticks all the boxes.
It led us to think that maybe a change could be made to current penalty shootouts. Who wouldn’t like to see every player have a shot at goal before the sudden death kick in. There’s nothing funnier and better than a goalkeeper lining up against a fellow goalkeeper.
In other games of note Man City belted Sheffield Wednesday 7-0, Chelsea won so they can play Shrewsbury next round who beat ex EPL Norwich no less, and Arsenal have one less trophy for Arsne Wegner to win after Southampton won. Oh, and Newcastle finally won a game.
Nothing like a GP under lights. Although unfortunately we finally get a GP in our time zone and it’s changed to suit Europe, we’re used to it now, and it is a great spectacle.
The winner was no surprise, nor was a Mercedes failure. Hamilton getting the good luck this time and Rosberg the bad. Mercedes are trying their very best to ensure the public are kept enthralled despite having a car much better than everyone. We thank them for making it interesting with all the in fighting, running into each other, failures, DNFs. They could probably be close to wrapping up championship by now, so it is very selfless of them.
Their selflessness allows Daniel Ricciardo to keep alive his chance of Bradburying this year’s title. 3rd behind Hamilton doesn’t help, but the Merc failures and his consistent pace keeps his chances alive.
As ever, the battles further back from the podium in the closing stages were great, and F1 has a great product at the moment. Give them time and they F*** it up somehow with tyres that last 5 laps, mid race driver changes, powerboosts based fans taking Instagram selfies dressed as their favourite driver.
Hard to complain about the action thus far, unless your side lost or didn’t make the finals, but that’s just being bitter.
There have been plenty of one sided halves in the finals thus far, but thankfully last weekend all featured great comebacks which unfortunately for the losers fell just short. But great finishes they were, and hopefully the same continues this week, with the right results of course. Eh Rabbits?
Local Rugby League is as popular as ever, and one can only imagine how much so if the PNG Hunters made the finals.
The Intrust Super Cup this week actually outrated the AFL final in Queensland last Sunday confirming League is king in Queensland and that people love their local league.
Their big show is on this weekend at Suncorp Stadium with all three grades getting their day at the home of rugby league. Why not wander down and get your 240 + of good times. Or if you’re lazy, catch it on Channel 9 at the premium timeslot of 3pm. We tip our winners below as part of our super multi.
Yet again the Cowboys exit the finals with some controversy, and feel they have been ripped off again. They will get some sympathy from League fans and The Gurgler who enjoy their style, and hoped for a Queensland side to go further. However….
1 – It was a knock on. If it wasn’t the last 10 seconds no one would have been too upset at the call.
2 – There was plenty of points conceded with some pretty ordinary defence in the first half. Ones less of those and the last few minutes don’t matter.
3 – Every year the Cowboys promise much and deliver variable amounts during the season. A Top 4 finish would give them the best possible chance that their final knockout game would be at home, and give them their best possible chance of avoiding a similar finish next year.
There’s plenty of action this weekend so are top three are:
AFL GRAND FINAL – aka the Buddy Franklin show. The two best teams meet in what should be a classic Grand Final. Please help yourself to our Drinking Game article if the on field action isn’t quite enough.
RYDER CUP – Golf is a pretty boring game to watch at the best of times. Those best of times don’t include Gurgler favourite Miguel Angel Jiminez and the US Masters who make Golf very watchable.
Almost on a par with those two (punt intended) is the Ryder Cup. Whilst a tournament involving superpowers Europe and USA shouldn’t really matter, it does bring most of the best golfers together for a team contest. So it’s as good as it gets for golf, almost.
ROOSTERS v RABBITOHS
Multiple 2014 NRL Flag favourite meet a week earlier than bookmakers would lead you to believe. Roosters looking to go back to back, and the Rabbitohs are hopefully on the verge of giving some joy and achievement for their loyal bunch of fans and bandwagoners.
THE GURGLER SUPER MULTI – Pays $580 for just $1
AFL GF – HAWKS +8.5 start
NRL FINALS – SOUTHS to beat Roosters
NRL FINALS – BULLDOGS to beat Penrith
NSW CUP FINAL – PENRITH to beat Newcastle
QLD CUP FINAL – NORTHERN PRIDE to beat Easts
GOLF – EUROPE to win Ryder Cup
MOTO GP – LORENZO to win Aragon GP
RL U/20 – BRISBANE to beat Dragons
RL U/20 – NZ to beat Parramatta.