DROP Greg Bird or risk more of Bird’s droppings.
That was the choice facing the Gold Coast Titans at selection this week.
Alas there was not more strength shown at that meeting….
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It is no secret that the Titans have amassed a war chest that is the envy of the National Rugby League.
The embattled club quite literally have millions of dollars of salary cap funds to spend on attracting marquee talent to the club starting from next year onwards.
Who they will end up luring to play footy in paradise is still anyone’s guess.
What is becoming clear though is the radical, innovative strategy the club used to build its treasury.
Traditionally a club’s salary cap coffers are swelled using a combination of savvy player management, shrewd business nouse and a whole lot of luck.
But in keeping with their rich tradition of lateral, outside-the-square thinking, the Titans have come up with a sure-fire way to make heaps of money without the hassle of having to work hard to do it.
Their plan has been a simple, albeit superstitious one.
Just get pooped on by a Bird.
At almost any other sporting club in Australia, any player who has stuffed up as royally as Greg Bird has this year would be lucky to be still training with the first grade side.
The troubled Titans captain almost dealt the club a near death blow in March when he was charged with possessing and supply of cocaine.
Weeks later he was reinstated by the club he almost shattered only to repay them by dangerously tackling an opponent in the Anzac Test Match.
Being a repeat offender of the lifting tackle, Bird was ruled out for 8 weeks.
Just how much Bird sh*t can the fans take?
After knocking the Titans to their knees then sitting back and watching them struggle for two months, you would think Bird’s days of playing first grade for the Titans would be over right?
Maybe at a club with a bit more backbone like the Broncos, Hawthorn, Swans or Storm Greg Bird’s carelessness would have been the perfect chance to set some standards of conduct and strengthen the culture of the club.
Maybe at a stronger club the coach would have sent a stern message to players and fans alike that bringing the club down has consequences and repercussions.
Not on the Gold Coast.
So committed is coach Neil Henry to the club’s superstitious salary cap strategy that Greg Bird has been rushed straight back into the starting side to face the Knights this weekend.
To make matters worse, Bird’s inclusion comes at the expense of 22 year old boom forward Lachlan Burr who has displayed great potential this season.
The problem with Bird poo is that while it may bring you money, it still stinks!
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