Former Cronulla and South Sydney fullback David Peachey said he hoped Laurie Daley's appointment as coach of the NSW State of Origin team would open the door for more indigenous players to wear the sky blue jersey. Peachey, who represented NSW and the Australian Super League team, said it was a constant source of frustration for him to think Queensland had a far better record of selecting indigenous players. Peachey said Daley, who boasts Aboriginal heritage, might be able to help showcase some talented players on the sport's biggest stage. ''It's a tough one,'' he said of the Blues' record compared with that of Queensland. ''If you go through and look at the players like [former St George Illawarra winger] Nathan Blacklock, who was the top try-scorer for three years, well, he couldn't get a look-in. I can't remember who the [NSW] wingers were back then but they must've been special. Nathan Merritt is in the same boat. When I joined Souths we came last but he topped the try-scoring list. It annoys me talking about the imbalance between NSW and Queensland because the Maroons have had the indigenous influence ever since the first game, when Arthur Beetson captained them.''
NO FAVOURS FOR COOREY
Canterbury are known as the family club but when you carry that tag you can run the risk of being accused of nepotism. That's why strapping prop Richard Coorey, whose father, Arthur, is a long-serving and well-respected Bulldogs board director, trialled with the Wests Tigers SG Ball team at Leichhardt yesterday. Arthur, who bleeds blue and white, said he never wanted it said his 17-year-old made the grade only because of family ties. Meanwhile, Cronulla recruit Beau Ryan also has a great link to the Dogs; his grandmother Gwen Crumpton was the long-serving secretary for the club's legendary chief executive Peter Moore.
TOOVEY WINS PRAISE
Manly might have been bundled out of the grand final race by Melbourne in an inglorious manner, but the way in which Geoff Toovey rallied the troops in his rookie season as a coach earned him the respect of his players. Granted he had a stellar roster, but Toovey nevertheless backed himself to follow a tough act in Des Hasler. ''I don't think he cares if he gets accolades,'' Sea Eagles hooker Matt Ballin said. ''He just does the job and he's been very effective for us.''
REALITY CHECK FOR TAMOU
North Queensland prop James Tamou might be in the sights of many Sydney teams but he's told anyone who cares to listen that he loves the ''brotherhood'' at Townsville and big things were brewing for the team. He has, however, conceded the Cowboys can't keep falling off their saddle whenever they play away. ''That's something we have to work on,'' Tamou said of the need to bring their home game to the harbour city.
STORM TAKE THE BISCUIT
In case you were wondering why Melbourne have ANZAC emblazoned across the lower half of their finals series jumper it's the result of a sponsorship deal with Unibic Biscuits. The company bakes Anzac biscuits and proceeds from the sales are pumped back into the RSL to help war veterans and their families.
PIES KEEP UP THE FIGHT
The Wests Magpies faithful have their chance to keep the mighty Black 'n' Whites alive by attending a Q&A session at their Ashfield Leagues Club on October 7. The Magpies were expected by some to simply roll over and die when the Wests Tigers decided to enter a merged Balmain/Wests team in the NSW Cup. However, Rick Wayde, who sacrificed plenty as the then-chief executive to ensure the club survived when the NSWRL tried to kick it out of the 1985 premiership, said reports of the Magpies' demise were premature. He said despite the Wests Tigers' application to enter a merged side in the feeder competition, the Magpies had also requested a berth. ''We have an application in there,'' Wayde told Sin Bin. ''We have funding for 2013 in place, although it's on suspension while a few things get sorted out. We'll have an information meeting at 10am on October 7 and members [and fans] should come and ask what the Leagues club will do to support the Wests Magpies playing on.''
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