Article by Dane Eldridge Roar Expert
Just like Todd Carney and his three-bedder in Goulburn or that hard-earnt inheritance hiding behind your stubbornly healthy gran, Ivan Cleary’s Tigers own the top four but can’t touch it.
Following another bipolar display on Friday, experts remain flummoxed how a side can continually beat the teams your side can’t beat yet be left “searching for positives” against respectable NSW Cup sides like Canterbury.
Premiership contenders breathed a sigh of relief following the 16-4 demise to the Dogs, safe in the knowledge their playoff pathways had been substantially softened by a ninth-placed side crashing to a spoon candidate.
But the result was of little shock to Cleary’s men, who were duty-bound to cave following an energetic dismantling of heavyweights South Sydney the week before.
Unfortunately for them, their DNA was always going to dish out consequences after recklessly inflicting a thrashing so severe it sends Anthony Seibold to Brisbane.
The Tigers’ 2018 split personality will be recalled alongside other scientific phenomena like the blood moon and the internet’s ability to withstand the weight of posts of the blood moon.
But while most of us scratch our heads and enjoy the ride, Tigers fans will tell you there is nothing new about the glass ceiling that plagues them now and most likely forever.
Put simply, 2018 is reminiscent of other seasons where they’ve done the same thing, except they weren’t crap.
Sure, many enjoyed apprehensive belief after a near flawless opening to the season, with the club’s only glitch against the Broncos in Round 3 when they succumbed to the force of the season so far, the referees.
After trading away scarred players from the previous administration, including James Tedesco to the Roosters and Aaron Woods to a Contiki tour of the south-east, they allowed themselves to dream of the forbidden delights of the top eight.
But alas, normal business resumed when the gutter-ball campaigners came to town, and the team continued to trade roles as the Washington Capitals.
Despite their inconsistency, it’s not all doom and gloom for Tigers fans. This time I reckon it’s different, mainly because it suits the tone of my narrative.
The future looks bright, provided the Magpies board faction doesn’t change the PIN.
Robbie Farah remains an astute purchase while ever he doesn’t incinerate the place, although he has reportedly issued the board a warning after crashing to the Bulldogs.
Esan Marsters is a beauty, Luke Brooks has finally emerged from Gary Freeman’s shadow and Benji Marshall is providing a calming influence in his 40s.
Plus there’s Josh Reynolds, whom I’ve been reliably informed does play for the club.
Better still, Nathan Cleary is only a few years away because Phil Gould will allow it.