Phil Gould

Phil Gould

Phil Gould is a League Columnist for The Sydney Morning Herald

League

Manly shine through, just as Parramatta expected

Phil Gould It wasn't the greatest spectacle of rugby league. But it was certainly an exciting afternoon's entertainment.

Set of Six

Phil Gould: Grand finalists back on track

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Phil Gould After disappointing displays last week, last year's grand finalists bounced back in impressive fashion. Manly had a gutsy win against Souths, while the Roosters were all class against the Eels.

Set of Six

Grades of grey: puzzle of the shoulder charge

Phil Gould If the NRL's match review committee believes Sonny Bill Williams' shoulder made illegal contact with George Burgess' head in the final minute of last Thursday's match between South Sydney and Sydney...

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League

Maroons selectors betray first signs of panic

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Phil Gould Queensland selectors have chosen only one genuine front-row forward for Game II of the 2013 Origin series.

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State of Origin

Eliminate risk and it will be game over

Phil Gould I feel we are losing something from the game of rugby league. It's not about the punching or the shoulder charge. No one goes out onto the field to intentionally do these things. It just happens.

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League

Benji can take next giant step with pride

Phil Gould I remember the first time I saw Benji Marshall play. I was calling a Schoolboy Cup game for Channel 9 in Brisbane.

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SET OF SIX

Touch of skill shown to form partnership

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Phil Gould The NRL and Touch Football Australia launched a historic sporting partnership last week representing the biggest boost to participation and game development in the history of either sport.

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Set of Six

Easy, Tigers: Brooks needs time to learn

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Phil Gould Some of the hysteria in the media as a result of Luke Brooks' debut performance is just ridiculous.

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SET OF SEVEN

You'd be brave to tip against Storm, but I am

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Phil Gould You would have to be crazy tipping against Melbourne this weekend.

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League

Earl kept his dark secret from club

Phil Gould Hands up all those who feel sorry for Sandor Earl? My, there are a lot of you. OK, hands down and take a seat. I have a story to tell.

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SET OF SIX

Trio's return to yield more tries than semi

Phil Gould The first semi-final clash between the Roosters and Sea Eagles three weeks ago was one of the most gripping and high-intensity games of football I have seen in a long time.

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League

A sad day for all but two sets of fans

Phil Gould It's the last weekend of the 2013 season. Just two teams remain: the Roosters and the Sea Eagles. That leaves 14 other NRL teams and their fans.

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Rugby League

Small crowd didn't deter the big men from big plays

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Phil Gould Does the City v Country match really mean something? If we go by the purpose and spirit shown by the 34 players who participated in this event on Sunday, then the answer is ''yes''.

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Set od Six

Young gun Idris finds old invincible streak

Phil Gould I am so excited about the improvement in young Jamal Idris from the Gold Coast Titans this season.

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Set of Six

Origin: it's back baby

Jarryd Hayne

Phil Gould Origin is definitely a team game, but I will be particularly interested in the performance of Blues fullback Jarryd Hayne.

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League

Right on Ricky: decks needed clearing

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Phil Gould There are two ways to run a professional football club.

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League

Inflexible salary cap a major problem

Phil Gould It would be easy to say Panthers fullback Matt Moylan is not playing first grade on Sunday because of the restrictive inadequacies of the NRL's salary cap structures.

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Rabbitohs have what it takes to give title shake

Burgess

Phil Gould South Sydney fans can really start to get excited. They're probably showing signs of jubilation already.

Manly show their best is frighteningly good

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Phil Gould A sunny, August Sunday afternoon at their Brookvale home base, hosting the in-form Knights, provided the perfect platform for Manly to make a statement about their 2012 intentions.

Matter of degree: Sea Eagles compensate for lapses but Bunnies' Jekyll-Hyde routine could end in heartache

Inglis

Phil Gould The two better teams won the elimination semi-finals. However, the devil is usually in the detail, so let's dig a little deeper.

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