We speak of things that matter…

Cheating really, because this post is REALLY about footy tipping! In 2021 City Diggers, thanks to the takeover by the Wollongong Golf Club, no longer had a tipping competition, but my current club of choice, Collegians/Illawarra Leagues, did. There are 136 tipsters spread over all six Collegians venues

Round 15 2021 began with South Sydney Rabbitohs annihilating Brisbane Broncos 46-0. I got that one right, so seven games to go. I should mention that so far this year by best has been 7 out of 8 correct, and that only once.

I posted on this important topic in April, I see. That was Round 6, and will serve to show my typical form.

Yes, a matter of random coin-tossing really…

But consider this past round, the glorious Round Fifteen!

Will I be the only tipster in Collegians to get 100%? Last round no-one did! So let us see — I will know on Wednesday when the tips are published at Illawarrra Leagues. Or maybe not. There is a gap caused by the second State of Origin game next Sunday, so Round 16 is in the first week of July.

Alas poor Bunnies

I could not bear to watch….

Keeping an eye on the game via the rolling summaries on ABC Sport I eventually posted my tipping outcome for the day ten minutes before the final siren.

Not a great start for tipping either… Do note the doubt I had expressed on the Tuesday I made my selections…

On Facebook my running comment was:

The Bunnies are in all sorts of trouble… At half-time 26-0 Melbourne in front! 10 minutes into the 2nd half things had not improved: 36-0! 😢🐰 With 20 minutes to go it’s 40-0! I think the doom is in…. Yep, 46-0 with 10 minutes left. With NINE minutes to go The Storm did it again! 50-0! 😢😢🐰 Cricket score time, alas! That was the final score.

All sorts of records were broken, as the ABC reports.

Melbourne star Josh Addo-Carr has made history by becoming the first player to score six tries during an elite-level Australian rugby league game in more than 70 years.

The NSW Origin winger returned the remarkable haul in a 50-0 demolition of South Sydney, putting the Rabbitohs’ NRL premiership hopes in serious doubt.

No team in history has conceded 50 points in a season and gone on to win the premiership that year.

In a miserable night for the depleted Rabbitohs, Addo-Carr ran riot on the right edge with four tries in the first half and two in the second.

Addo-Carr is the first player to score six tries in a game since Jack Troy did it for Newtown in 1950 .

The 50-point victory brought to an end Souths’ seven-game winning streak after injuries ravaged their side through the week.

Perhaps the Bunnies need to get this guy back:


Oh those Bunnies!

My footy tipping at Illawarra Leagues has not been spectacularly successful After the recently completed Round 7 I ranked 96 out of 136 tipsters. I might add that no-one tipped all the winners in Round 7! However, now we have Round 8 and I made a good start last night. So did the South Sydney Rabbitohs, aka The Bunnies, with their seventh win in a row!

Believe those tips at your own risk!

Back in 2013 The Bunnies had special help, but still did not win the Grand Final.


But they did come good the following year! I was spotted at the bus stop in Mount Keira Road at the time.


Ah, what a year that was!

Mind you, many a slip and so on this season — but it is looking good. Next Thursday they are up against the Melbourne Storm and that will prove interesting!

The background to that 2014 win and why it was significant is gone into in my 2014 post.

This is the climax of many a turbulent year since the last time the Bunnies made it – 1971. Roy Masters tells an interesting story. (I took the photo below in Cleveland Street’s “Little Lebanon” just up from The Prophet in July 2010.)

So yes, I lived in Bunnies territory for quite a while, and in the last five years to 2010 wrote a few pieces for the South Sydney Herald, even scoring a front page once!

The Paper (as we all called it) was the brainchild of the late Trevor Davies, a Labor true believer and a pillar of South Sydney Uniting Church, where I was a regular from 2005-2010. I have been back a few times, but not in recent days. There were and are some great people there.

On Facebook the other day I posted a memory I have stored on YouTube. Here is a different day from 2008 — you’ll see which one! Sorry it cuts short but I was just getting used to my camera and was not sure of its battery life!

About really important matters, such as footy tipping….

You may have expected something about Prince Philip this morning. I have already done that — 10 April and 13 April. So I turn to other matters.

In the past I have occasionally shone at the arcane business of footy tipping — that is predicting who the winners will be in that week’s NRL (Rugby League) round. For example, look at 2016.

King of the tipsters, me!

Posted on  by Neil

Well, co-regent now with DL. Earlier this month I posted:

I am in the Diggers competition again this year, though it is smaller than last year. Believe it or not by the end of last week (Round 5) I was running equal second, just behind DL who was a mere two points ahead! Just shows real knowledge of the game is not essential.

Last week I scored 100% in Round 8 – but so did DL. Now Round 9. I offer you my picks:

  • RABBITOHS vs Tigers
  • EELS vs Bulldogs
  • PANTHERS vs Raiders
  • ROOSTERS vs Knights
  • Sea Eagles vs COWBOYS
  • Warriors vs DRAGONS
  • Titans vs STORM
  • Sharks vs BRONCOS

Let’s wait and see how that goes. You might like to compare with a site called The Thinker (NRL tips from the biggest mind in Rugby League.) I see there a guest set by one of the greats of the game, Wally Lewis.

Wally Lewis – round nine selections (in bold)
  • RABBITOHS vs Tigers
  • EELS vs Bulldogs
  • PANTHERS vs Raiders
  • ROOSTERS vs Knights
  • Sea Eagles vs COWBOYS
  • WARRIORS vs Dragons
  • Titans vs STORM
  • Sharks vs BRONCOS

Close, eh!

Next day

Not exactly a good start. Alas, poor Bunnies! South Sydney coach Michael Maguire furious as Wests Tigers send Rabbitohs to fourth straight defeat.

And this, a sad personal story as it is, could affect EELS vs Bulldogs.

And the results were:

  • RABBITOHS vs Tigers NO
  • EELS vs Bulldogs YES
  • PANTHERS vs Raiders YES
  • ROOSTERS vs Knights  YES
  • Sea Eagles vs COWBOYS YES
  • Warriors vs DRAGONS NO
  • Titans vs STORM YES
  • Sharks vs BRONCOS NO

As you can see, a fickle business. But I did rather well in the end:

Go the Sharkies!

Posted on  by Neil

Today Chris T and I are going to cash in my (third) prize for the City Diggers Tipping Competition: see Shakespeare and footy tipping. The prize turned out to be a $25 bistro voucher and a bottle of house wine.

The Rabbitohs of course are no longer in the 2016 competition, but my hometown team the Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks last night got themselves into the Grand Final!


That really is something! The club is fifty years old. They have never won a Grand Final in all that time, The last time they played in a Grand Final was 1978, not counting 1997 when they were runners-up in the  inaugural – and only – grand final of the ten-team Super League competition.

My Cronulla connection.


They will play either Melbourne or Canberra, depending on the outcome of tonight’s game.


Turned out to be Melbourne.

In 2021 City Diggers, thanks to the takeover by the Wollongong Golf Club, no longer had a tipping competition, but my current club of choice, Collegians/Illawarra Leagues, did. There are 136 tipsters spread over all six Collegians venues. And I found a promising looking website to aid my choices: Footy Forecaster.

Looks scientific almost, what with those probability percentages! The Round 5 one above compares what they picked with what I picked using my favoured method — general ignorance. Footy Forecaster was slightly better than general ignorance in that round. Of the 136 Collegians tipsters only ONE selected all the winners!

Anyway I decided for the current round, Round 6, to look at what Footy Forecaster offered and furthermore I downloaded a list of the injuries affecting teams, and with all that in mind, plus my usual ignorance, I made my selections, hoping to score 100% this time and thus to add bonus points (lifting to 10/10) and hence rise above the pack from my current lowly ranking — I have oscillated thus far between 30-something and 100 out of 136.

The round is not over, but this is how it has gone so far:

At least it is a neat pattern, and I do have two more chances today…

I do think, however, that I will revert to general ignorance over homework for Round 7!

Rabbitohs, Rusty, and Sydney Boys High again!

On Facebook I am, unsurprisingly, a member of the SBHS Old Boys’ Union Group. Last night a post on it being 25 years since the GPS Regatta was held on the Nepean at Penrith came up. I added my two cents worth: ” I am ancient enough to have seen SHS win the Head of the River — twice!” Which is true: 1957 and 1959.


1959: Bow, P W Shenstone; 2, I J Stewart; 3, I D Toll; 4, A J Skinner; 5, J A Campbell; 6, G F Cohen; 7, S R McGill; Stroke, W L Young; Cox, R G Caddy; Coach, A R Callaway, Esq

Last night too, I should add, the South Sydney Rabbitohs had a famous victory over the St George Illawarra Dragons. Yes, there is a connection — via Russell Crowe! Though born in New Zealand, Rusty did go to Sydney High as a boy. Here he is:


In that lovely 1994 movie The Sum of Us, Rusty wore a Sydney High Rugby jersey in the opening moments.

As you may have observed in that trailer. But here is a screen shot in case you missed it.

Screenshot (330)

I remember the wonderful Tony Hannon telling me about the day Rusty came back to the school to get that jersey.

Now as any  Bunnies fan knows, Russell Crowe is Rabbitohs through and through. What I didn’t know is that he tried to insert the Sydney High motto — veritate et virtute — into The Gladiator! Hat tip fellow Facebook SHS Old Boys’ member Drew Laidlaw Hoare, who wrote: “I’d heard many times the Russell Crowe ‘Veritate et Virtute’ Gladiator story, but had never seen the footage. Here’s the explanation for those interested:”

The relevant bit is in the first few minutes of that. But that is not all.  Drew went on: “There was also talk of him putting the motto on South Sydney Rabbitohs kit at one point but can’t find it. Here is a shot of him with it on the back of a jumper.”


And Rowing lives on at SBHS!