As the controversy continues to swirl surrounding Adam Goodes, easily Australia’s most polarising athlete since Shane Warne, Manly coach Geoff Toovey shows how to act in the public spotlight with dignity under adverse circumstances.
Geoff Toovey was sacked, unfairly in my opinion and will make way for Trent Barrett, an untested coach at NRL level. Toovey led Manly to the 2013 grand final and took over from Des Hasler, who enjoyed enormous success with a star studded roster.
Toovey is working with an aging roster who are are struggling from the backlash of infighting that led to the departure of both Anthony Watmough and Glenn Stewart. Both favourite sons at Brookvale and now Keiran Foran has jumped ship to Parramatta as the Sea Eagles attempt to re-build under the weight of Daly Cherry-Evans enormous contract.
Toovey knew his head was on the chopping block and acted with dignity when he fronted the media to talk about his rather public execution. Bravo I say. All he has done is bronzed his legacy as one of Manly’s finest ever players, both on and off the field.
Now compare Toovey to Adam Goodes, current Australian of the year and long serving Sydney Swan, who, in the face of taunts by fans, has chosen to voluntarily stand himself down from this weekends match for the sake of his team mates. Are you kidding me Adam?
He has played the race card over and over and his behaviour has divided public opinion on whether Goodes is being vilified for being indigenous or whether he is being taunted for being a princess on the field. I believe it is the latter. I personally don’t care about the heritage of an athlete and Australians have marvelled at the feats of indigenous athletes over the years and embraced them as Australians, regardless of their skin colour. I believe they (the fans) felt the same way.
Evonne Goolagong-Cawley, Kathy Freeman, Greg Inglis, Jonathan Thurston, Mal Meninga, Lionel Rose, Patty Mills, the Ella brothers and the list goes on. All indigenous athletes who Australians, regardless of their skin colour, have embraced because of their ability in their chose profession as opposed to what they look like. In the political correct world gone mad that we currently live in, shifting the blame and not taking responsibility for your actions is the new black.
There have been eight indigenous winners of the Dally M medal, including incumbent winner Jonathan Thurston. Kids emulate him and want to be him because of his ability as a player, not because of what he looks like. I doubt that even crosses their mind.
Independent judges vote for the Dally M winner and past winners include Cliff Lyons, Preston Campbell, Laurie Daley and Jonathan Thurston. All of indigenous heritage. Both State of Origin coaches are of indigenous heritage. It’s all about merit and the best person for the job, not tokenism based on skin colour.
And so not to be seen as supporting mob rule, the AFL and moronic, politically correct media commentators jump on the pc bandwagon in order to be seen doing the right thing. Do people boo en masse when Greg Inglis does his goanna routine after he scores a try? Personally, I love it and I am not a Queensland or Rabbitohs supporter. it’s unique and it’s his way of expressing his pride for his heritage.
Several NRL players have pledged to do their own tribal dance in support of Goodes on the weekend. Do you think they will be applauded or booed for their actions?
Whatever happens next, the power rests with Goodes but he is the one creating the racial divide. Be a man and face your issues head on. Geoff Toovey did and he earnt my respect ten fold and no doubt down the track, he will be rewarded for his poise and dignity in a tough situation. Can you say the same Adam Goodes? Best have a think about that when you are sitting in the stands this weekend watching your team mates do your work for you.
Tooves, you should take a well earned rest. You deserve it. Not because of what you look like. Because you have earned it.