OPINION

ARL boss Peter V'landys keeps making the right calls

Rugby league boss Peter V'landys has proven to be the right man to have in charge. Photo: Matt King/Getty Images

Rugby league boss Peter V'landys has proven to be the right man to have in charge. Photo: Matt King/Getty Images

ARL Commission boss Peter V'landys has always been a man who gets things done, and that's what I love about his leadership.

There has been no better example of that than over the past week.

To do what the NRL has done in the short space of time they have done it to keep the game alive is phenomenal.

I know people at times are critical of V'landys, but I'm certainly not one of them. I think he is a wonderful leader. When you are facing the toughest of situations, he's the bloke you want with you and on your side.

He's prepared to make hard calls, he backs his judgments and what he has been able to do over the past 18 months - in putting contingencies in place knowing these challenges could crop up at any time - is what sets him apart.

That's exactly what you want in your leaders, because it means you can be proactive rather than chasing your tail when a crisis crops up.

Moving the competition to Queensland comes at an enormous cost, but the alternative - shutting down the game - would be a whole lot worse. The NRL will come through this period OK financially because of the savings they have made in various other parts of the business.

So I'm very happy that we've got V'landys in charge, because you wonder right now where the game would be without him.

There'll definitely be some challenges for the clubs and their players, and it will be the teams that handle that hub environment the best that will shine through.

Some clubs will thrive, like Melbourne have done in the past, but there'll be others who will struggle.

Some clubs will have a lot of young guys with not as many family ties, so there will be less stress and distractions for them.

But if you have an older, more mature team with a lot of family and kids who haven't made the trip up, that can become a challenge over time.

The other thing is how teams spend their time. You have to be careful when you are in these hubs that you don't overdo it and have meetings for the sake of having meetings. You have to try and keep it as normal as possible, but the temptation is always there to do a bit more because you have the players there on site with you.

It's all those things that will come into play over the next month or so, and it's going to be fascinating to see how it all plays out up there.

NO CLEAN SWEEP

Queensland were up for it and NSW paid the price for being disjointed in attack and not taking their chances in Origin III.

There is no question the loss of halves Nathan Cleary and Jarome Luai made a huge difference because the organisation and smoothness in attack just wasn't there. But just as telling was Daniel Saifiti's absence in the middle.

We just didn't get the go-forward that he provided in the opening two games of the series.

To their credit, the Maroons showed plenty of fight. Ben Hunt, out of dummy half, made a huge difference and the brilliance of Kalyn Ponga was evident.

I'm still shocked the Blues didn't get the job done, but from a non-parochial perspective I suppose it's not a bad thing for the future of Origin that we didn't get a blow-out series clean sweep.

Given the Blues won the series overall by a margin of 94-26, I think I can live with that for the next 12 months.

THE GAMES

TITANS v EELS

The competition's move to Queensland is a massive boost for the Titans who aren't great travelers, but they don't have the consistency for me to tip them against the Eels here. The return of Reed Mahoney is huge for Parra, who will be too professional in this one. My tip: Eels

EAGLES v DRAGONS

Manly was out-worked by the Raiders last weekend. They won't have Tom Trbojevic for this one and have had trouble with the Dragons in the past. I think they can win, but it will be a tight one. My tip: Manly

RAIDERS v SHARKS

Both teams returned to the winners' list last week so will take some confidence out of that. I thought the Raiders showed some real desperation to knock over Manly and are going to need more of the same here to overcome the Sharks. My tip: Raiders

COWBOYS v ROOSTERS

The Roosters have been smashed by injury but still have X-factor in Tedesco, Manu and Walker. The Cowboys won't have Valentine Holmes. My tip: Roosters

STORM v KNIGHTS

I'm looking forward to this one because the Knights will field just about their strongest lineup of the season and have shown some good recent signs. But how do you tip against the might of Melbourne? My tip: Storm

WARRIORS v PANTHERS

Even without their two star halves, I think Penrith can get the job done again here. The Warriors have been really disappointing over the past few games and should have played better. My tip: Panthers

BRONCOS v TIGERS

I'm giving the Tigers one last chance here before I bar them for life. When you talk about inconsistency, these two teams are on the podium for the best at it. Who turns up this week? It's a massive game for Tigers coach Michael Maguire. My tip: Tigers

RABBITOHS v BULLDOGS

The passing game of Cody Walker on both edges last weekend was out of this world. If Souths are in the mood, I can't see the Dogs getting near them on the scoreboard in this one. My tip: Rabbitohs

This story ARL boss Peter V'landys keeps making the right calls | Laurie Daley first appeared on The Canberra Times.