Sunday, 7 August 2011

A Reality Check (2009)

A 50 year old man enters an office at the Reserve Bank of Australia. He is applying for the role of CEO. The interviewer peruses his resume, expecting some remarkable roles and achievements, however, he learns immediately that this man has only had two jobs throughour his entire working life. For 26 years he was a janitor at a primary school and for the last 6 years he has been head janitor at a private school.

Would you hire this man? Of course you wouldn’t. The point of this farcical scene is to ask the question: How did David Gallop get the job of NRL CEO?

In the past, all administrators of the game had actually played it at First Grade level. Given their eras and what they had to work with, they all helped move the game forward in leaps and bounds. Now the game has become stagnant.

After many years in the top gig, Gallop has emerged incredibly unscathed. No one has really questioned his ability to govern the game, which, given the amount of turmoil the game has gone through during his tenure, is quite unbelievable.

A company’s success is measured by many factors, but two of the most important factors are growth and improvement.

Under Gallop’s reign, the game’s popularity has come back to the field, with AFL and Rugby Union and to a lesser extent, even soccer, are now not so far behind, if indeed they are behind at all, as the most dominant winter sport.

There have been more alcohol related breaches of club and NRL policy and the law. There have been more incidents of rape and other assorted violence against women.

What did Gallop do to try and stop all this? He created an educational seminar on how to treat women which made no major impact whatsoever. More rape allegations came in, more violence against women incidents occurred.

Now sure, he’s not responsible for everyone’s actions, but his complete lack of meaningful intervention to put an end to these matters is deplorable. He has also failed to provide a tough punishment for bringing the game into disrepute. He is weak.

Within the game and away from scandal, he is still just as pathetic. In years gone by, the major threat to our game was the English Superleague poaching some of our top players. Now the threat of Rugby Union is even bigger, with players being offered huge contracts, which are very difficult to turn own.

What has Gallop done to try and help clubs retain their star players and in turn, ensure the best players stay in the NRL? Nothing. The Salary cap has had minimal increases and more high profile players are considering moves to Rugby Union.

Because of this, players are able to ask for stupidly excessive contracts and in most cases, get them. This whole drama has seen a huge increase in the number of salary crap breaches, both small and large. More clubs are exceeding the cap now than ever before. If that’s not a message slapping you in the face, then nothing is.

The game itself has had some contradictory changes. It was made faster, then slower, now it’s becoming faster again. Referees went from having all control, to little control, by having a video referee constantly informing him of infringements and errors on the field, now the control is swinging back to the referees on the field. Souths and Gold Coast were kicked out and then brought back in.

These show just how confused Gallop is; he doesn’t know what to do, or how to run the game. He’s a charlatan. He can’t even count, since when did a centenary equal 101 years?

It appears he has a conflict of interest, he’s still trying to sell newspapers instead of trying to run the NRL. In this regard he has been exceptionally successful.

It’s time for this catastrophe to come to an end. Gallop must be sacked at some point this year and replaced by a man who has actually played the game, who has some business acumen, has the nous to run a successful organisation and most of all has the respect of all the players, so that he can take a hard stance against all this rubbish that Gallop has introduced into our code.

David Gallop, the full time whistle is about to blow. Your season is over and all you’ve managed to achieve is a wooden spoon.

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