With the Auckland NRL Nines squads named, there’s been a few surprises, and another couple of players from back in the day returning for another piece of glory. That got us at The Gurgler thinking, who we’d like to see come back for the Nines.
These won’t happen, as the players are too far past the end of their career, and some of them have had bad times off the field recently too, but humour us for a bit as we look back on some players who in their prime would have love Nines. You never know, we could get our time machine working and use it to bring these players back from their prime to this year’s Nines.
Very few players could excite like Dale Shearer could back in the day, and surely his attacking flair and style would suit the shortened version of the game. Plus there’s always room for a kicking duel in the Nines. Always.
The fastest man in league in his time, he would have been some sight to see in this form of rugby league. He still looks fit enough to give it a go now.
The hard charging Queenslander would have loved this Nines concept with the extra room to run. He only finished up in 2011 so is our most recent league player so far.
NATHAN HINDMARSH AND BRYAN FLETCHER
Both would be great at the Nines, but more so, it would give more fodder for their excellent work on the Matty Johns shows on Foxtel.
The man of the people in rugby league, and pure Box Office, Dell would be a dream recruit for the Nines, and would still have the confidence to play even this year.
Although just club-less and not technically retired, let’s not forget that George was man of the match in the Indigenous All Stars game last year. Sure, his physique is not completely suited to Nines, but wouldn’t the crowd love him. The Gurgler sure would.
We’d love a Trevor Cogger kind of moment where an ex player is plucked away from their pie and out of the crowd to play in one of the games. Although the huge squads means that is unlikely.