Ricky Stuart is now in the third year of his tenure and he has slowly built the Raiders into a team that he has chosen rather than inherited. A testament to Stuart’s squad management nous is that he even managed for another club to take Josh McCrone off his hands. But in putting together this complicated puzzle, there still looks to be a missing piece; one final quality prop (or any adequate prop for that matter).
Ricky scoured the Rugby League world far and wide. He first went to recently retired Brett White’s Pita Pit restaurant in Braddon. After ordering the Chick’n Fala, he subtly asked Brett if he’d like to strap the boots on again. Brett was too busy making a Superfruit Antioxia smootie and the blender was too loud so he didn’t reply.
He then tried to track down 1994 grand final hero Paul Osborne. With nine children and many hungry mouths to feed, surely Paul would come out of retirement at 49 years of age to play for a minimal contract. Having quit politics and having been fired as CEO of Parramatta, Paul had found a lucrative job. With the rise of self-serve supermarket checkouts, you could simply walk out of the supermarket without paying for items! Brett White had hired Paul to do this with packets of pita bread and Osborne preferred to keep doing this than to test his body at NRL level again.
Hard headed Kiwi prop John Lomax would certainly be worth a short, Ricky opined. When offered the job, 50 year old union organizer Lomax initially agreed to play, before finding out the RPLA are a tame bunch compared to the CFMEU. The Raiders have offered Lomax a non-playing deal to go and knock on the door of the NRL Video Referee bunker during Raiders games in 2016.
So the Raiders are stuck with Jeff Lima for the time being.
Lucky they have a pretty strong side across the park, with new recruits Aidan Sezer and Englishman Elliott Whitehead sure to strengthen the team that failed to make the finals last year. The top 8 this year is certainly the minimal expectation, or Ricky might want to start learning the recipes of the tastiest, healthiest wraps in all of the ACT.
(*this review was not paid for by Pita Pit but we will accept payment in the form of vouchers)
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