Auckland Blues’ coach Tana Umaga has welcomed the announcement that hype-machine Sonny Bill Williams will be playing for his team in next year’s Super Rugby competition, highlighting the fact that Williams was a “perfect match for the Blues over-rated, under-achieving culture.”
“When you look at all the potential and hype surrounding the Blues each year, and compare that with Sonny Bill Williams, you’ll find the two are very similar,” said Umaga at today’s press conference in Auckland. “So it was only natural that Sonny Bill would want to align himself with the Blues so that we can let down the country and Auckland together.”
For his part, Williams said that he was excited by the opportunity to be part of a side that fails to live up to the immense talent at its disposal, “I really feel like I’ll be right at home here,” Williams said. “Ultimately, the Blues are a great parallel for how my rugby career has failed to ignite despite my massive athletic ability and natural ball skills.”
Williams also added that he finds it “comforting that the Blues switch coaches nearly as often as I switch codes.”
Auckland Blues coach Sir John Kirwan today confirmed that Rugby League convert Benji Marshall would feature at fullback in next year’s Super Rugby competition as a way of hiding his defensive frailties from opposition teams.
At the launch of the Blues’ 2014 squad, Kirwan said that it was obvious “even to a blind man” that Marshall lacked any defensive ability and that the Blues had signed the League star purely as an attempt to encourage Auckland Warriors fans to switch codes too.
“We’ve all seen the magic that Benji can create on attack,” Kirwan wrote into a large sandpit with a stick, “but we also know that defensively he couldn’t tackle a paraplegic in a wheelchair. Obviously we can’t afford to have that type of defensive weakness at halfback or first five, so we figured sticking Benji at fullback would minimise the chances that he’d embarrass himself by trying to tackle anyone.”
Kirwan went on to also write that “The All Blacks and Crusaders already hide Israel Dagg’s lack of tackling ability in the same way, so we figured it must be a pretty successful measure,” before he ran out of room in the sandpit.
For his part, Benji Marshall is said to be excited about his positional switch, “Absolutely am I excited,” Marshall said while Kirwan continued to stare blankly into the middle distance. “Being at fullback means I get to do all the flashy stuff like catching balls, passing balls and kicking balls without having to worry about big guys trying to run at me. If someone does run at me, I’ll just blame the guys up front for not making their first up tackles. So it’s pretty much a win win for everyone.”
Despite having rebranded themselves to the New Zealand Warriors in 2001, the Warriors have today admitted the rebrand was “a bit of a have” and that they’ve actually just been an Auckland only team all along.
Speaking on Radio Sport this morning, Warriors CEO Wayne Scurrah said that he was surprised that nobody had realised the truth earlier. “When you look at the fact that it took until 2013 for us to finally take one of our home games outside of Auckland, while Australian clubs have been giving up their home games to play at other New Zealand venues for years, I’m surprised nobody cottoned on to the fact that we’re still just the Auckland Warriors some time ago.”
Scurrah also confirmed that the 2001 rebrand was a ploy to ensure that, “those bloody Wellingtonians couldn’t enter their own NRL team,” and that the rebrand had proven its value after the recent realisation that Wellington could run a football team better than Auckland could had forced their hand to play a home game in Wellington this year.
“After seeing how Wellington turned around Auckland’s A League football franchise with the Phoenix, and that the turn around wasn’t just a fad, we realised this year we’d better take a game down to Wellington just to show we’re not totally incompetent at running sports teams here,” Scurrah told Radio Sport.