I said I'd do it and I did. I needed to figure out just how bad Campbell Graham is, just where he fits in on a list that has some truly terrible players on it. The early new millennium was not a good time for Souths with all of the drama surrounding expulsion and readmission and a very long rebuilding process. It took over a decade for Souths to go from perennial wooden spooners to premiership powerhouse and, while they're still a powerhouse, the continued selection of Campbell Graham represents a worrying trend. A potential to backslide. (Yes, I'm aware they're undefeated. But the writing was on the wall against the Titans.)
62 players have rode the flanks of the Rabbitohs since they were reinstated to the competition in 2002. Here they are, ranked by my estimation of their ability.
Scott McLean The G.O.A.T. Only played one year for Souths before he unfortunately had to return to his home planet to save it from disaster. A god among insects. The only player I have ever asked for an autograph from.
Nathan Merritt Nate-Dog was a remarkably gifted try-scorer, one of the greatest of all time. Had an almost supernatural ability to turn up exactly where and when he was needed to score a try. One of the last of the “old school” wingers, Merritt’s later career suffered due to his size - as the game shifted towards larger bodies his smaller frame could no longer contain his opposite number. Also Merritt was dogged by an ankle injury later in his career that he never fully recovered from, which has unfairly tarnished the memory of his ability (I suffer from the same condition myself and I'll never run again, so the fact he played on is simply remarkable). The best NSW winger by a country mile for most of his career, he earned one single Origin call up and only when literally every other eligible winger was injured. This was at the back end of his career, post-injury and past his prime, and he is unfortunately remembered for being a liability on a stage he would have dominated in the decade prior (and to be fair most of his defensive failings in that game were due to Daley’s poor coaching). Topped the league’s try-scorer list twice in his career, once from the team that ran dead last with only three wins. He was that good. His non-selection for Origin 2006-2012 is why I will never, ever, support the Blues.
Alex Johnston Whenever the topic of “fastest player in the NRL” comes up, oddly AJ’s name is never mentioned. James Roberts, Josh Addo-Carr, Sunilasi Vunivalu - Johnston has run them all down. Currently plying his trade as a reasonable fullback, he’s out of position. AJ is one of the best wingers in the current game. He debuted in Round 8, 2014 and ended up scoring 21 tries - topping the try-scorers list and setting the then record for tries in a debut season (which he did having only played ⅔ of that season). Has won a premiership, played for Australia, scored 80 tries and, like Merritt, will probably never be mentioned for the Blues.
Lote Tuqiri A lot of people laughed when Souths signed the 35 year old dual-international. They weren’t laughing when he lifted the trophy in October 2014. That grand final is remembered mostly for the Burgess boys heroics but in my opinion it was Lote Tuqiri who really swung that game. 6-all early in the second half, Lote chased a Reynolds clearing kick and caught Bulldogs' fullback Sam Perrett on his own 10m line. He then made the next 3 tackles from marker, restricting the ‘Dogs to less than 30 meters. They kicked from the back foot, Souths’ next set started from good field position and then George Burgess did his thing. There were a lot of big moments in that game, but that one defensive set from the veteran winger broke Canterbury’s spirits and won Souths their 21st premiership. It wasn't all Lote, but he was a huge part of it and more important than most people think.
James Roberts You know how good he is now? He was just as good then. In a U20’s final against Canberra he scored two 110m tries - picking the ball up on his own dead ball line, beating everyone and planting it under the sticks. Twice! I’d have really liked Roberts to still be playing for his junior club but rules is rules and he was much more of a dickhead back then. He needed to go. Still a phenomenal player though.
Adam Doueihi This guy will be a deadset superstar. Touted as a halfback, with strong showings at center, fullback and wing. His best position is fullback, but I’d have him anywhere in the team. I’ve got him in this position based on one performance on the wing, but that was against the Storm, it was an absolutely amazing game and he played extremely well. He did do himself a long term mischief by putting in a stupid kick instead of passing for a certain try, so a deduction there, but he’s still really damn good. I'm rating him here based on my assumptions of what he'd do on the wing, but his form is on the board.
Braidon Burns There was one game where he struggled under the bomb against Penrith, but he has never not looked like an absolute gun. I can’t for the life of me figure out why Maguire and Seibold didn’t play him. He made waves at the start of this season as Bennett put him in the squad and he showed what he could do (admittedly at center) but it’s not like he magically woke up like this one day - he was always this good. It’s just the previous coaches were not.
Dane Gagai One of the strongest kick returners in the game today. Can be a liability in defence at times, and at other times makes stupid mistakes from trying too hard - which I’ve absolutely castigated other players on this list for doing. But Gags is what the military would call a "force multiplier". He's good in his own right - he's a Wally Lewis medallist after all - but he makes a good team even better. He can score a try and, more importantly, he can set one up. I like watching him play and the good outweighs the bad. Opinions differ greatly, but his record speaks for itself. Sorry Newcastle, it wasn't him, it was you.
Bryson Goodwin A very, very solid player. A fantastic defender who could still find the stripe with regularity. A handy left-boot goalkicker as well. Bryson rarely had a bad game, the problem was his bad games were at very inopportune times, such as a preliminary final. Generally speaking though you could put Goodwin on a flank and then not have to worry about it.
Andrew Everingham Enjoyed a breakout year in 2012 under Maguire and looked like the next big thing. Was a good winger, a lot like Merritt on the other side of the field. Quick, elusive, solid defence, could sniff out a try, Everingham looked the goods. Came back to earth a little in his second year, but was never that bad, he just didn’t hit the lofty heights of his debut season. And then, suddenly, he was never heard from again. Some say he was abducted by aliens, others that he went to play rugby in Japan. The truth may never be known. A curious case of “what if?” but the time he spent at Souths was by and large a highlight.
Corey Allan I haven’t seen enough of him to make a firm judgment, but he’s got all the makings of a star. His preferred position is fullback, so that counts against him, but he does everything correctly for a winger. Good under the high ball, a good runner, can tackle, knows where the tryline is, I can’t wait to see more of him. I’d like to switch him and AJ though, to get our best winger back. It says a lot about the dark times though that someone three games into their career is up at this end of the list and simply because he hasn't spent entire seasons leaking points.
Robert Jennings I don’t know how to rate Robert Jennings. His defence is pretty suspect and he’s injury prone. That should put him down the list. But he scored a boatload of tries. That’s good. But he was on the end of one of the great backlines and anyone could have scored most of those tries. That’s bad. But he was the leading try-scorer until he got injured. That’s good. Simpsons references aside, I can’t make an accurate assessment on Jennings. I don’t think he’s good enough to be this high on the list, given that he was on the end of Cook/Walker/Sutton/Inglis and I think a lot of the players further down could have done a lot more with that structure around them, but you can’t ignore the fact that he was in the right place at the right time. He certainly isn’t going that well at the Tigers, but he did at the Bunnies and that's what counts.
Kirisome Auva'a "Some" had a game on the wing once, so he has to be on the list. He gave it the same gusto with which he always approached the game in the centers. I guess I’m rating him more as a center here than a winger, but was a good soldier for Souths. I’ll never forget being in the corner where he scored that miraculous, match-sealing try in the 2014 grand final, so nostalgia bumps him up the list.
Hymel Hunt Couldn’t find a consistent spot under both Maguire and Seibold, which surprises me because he’s a very competent player. He got the job done whenever he was put in, maybe not with the same panache but certainly with substance. I guess I’m rating him more on the performances he didn’t put in. He sat on the bench doing nothing for the entire 2018 finals series and I am one hundred percent certain that if he’d played on the wing instead of Campbell Graham, and if Souths had carried an extra forward on the bench, then we’re the 2018 premiers. I’m absolutely certain. How's Siebs going for Brisbane?
Matt King Past his prime when he joined Souths but a good player is always a good player. 2012 was when Souths started to transform into a powerhouse club and King’s experience and composure was a big part of that. He was never going to be a long term option, but he did his job well of bringing the next generation through and leading by example. Part of the famous “take me now, I have seen it all!” team.
Shane Marteene Marteene wasn’t brilliant. But he was solid. He ran good lines, read well in defence, tackled hard. He did the so called “one-percenters” really well. In all honesty Souths could have used another Nathan Merritt, especially since he was in his regrettable tenure at Cronulla at the time, but I’ve got a soft spot for the toilers in those troubled times. Will be forever remembered as the guy that Greg Bird kneed in the face.
Shannon Hegarty While he never hit the heights with Souths that he did with the Roosters and Queensland, he was never a bad player. More that he was on the back end of his career and the structures around him were awful. None of it was really his fault.
Luke MacDougall An absolute lunatic, like all MacDougalls. Wasn’t the baleful influence on the club that Adam was. Luke had his issues, sure, but he could find his way over the stripe and was, for a period, statistically the best attacking player in the NRL inside the 20m.
Paul Mellor I didn’t really know where to put Mellor. On one hand most of his career was spent never realising his potential - he was a giant of a man who could monster his opposite winger, but he never really seemed to grasp that idea. On the other hand in his last few games he actually came good and played well. Will forever own a place in my heart for causing the blowup that got rid of the MacDougalls from the club. Could run, jump, tackle - he was capable of doing everything you’d want a good winger to do, it just took him 16 years to get there. In a game against Melbourne he pulled off one of the greatest cover tackles I’ve ever seen - on Slater I think - grabbing him from behind as he dove over the tryline, hauling him back mid-dive and then wrapping up the ball. If he could have done that on the reg we’d be talking about him like we do Israel Folau.
Reece Simmonds I really liked Simmonds in the one year he spent at Souths. He wasn’t flashy but he did everything you want a winger to do. Not a superstar but just a good, solid wingman. The game could use more like him.
Dylan Farrell Better known as a center, he spent some time on the wing. Never really lived up to the hype surrounding him, especially after his epic debut, where he scored a hat-trick that included the golden point match winner. But a good player nonetheless and better than most of the dross on this list. I’m putting him this high because I think I’d have a different opinion of him if he didn’t defect to Saints and I’m trying to be objective.
Brent Grose One of those players who was neither here nor there. A decent size body with a good turn of pace, Grose was one of those table scraps buys Souths were forced into because they were readmitted after the signing season. Enjoyed some success in the UK.
Matt Riddle A good, solid, goal-kicking winger. Only ever played two games, which mystified me. Paul Langmack was an idiot. Probably still is. I really rated Riddle in the lower grades and during the trials and I’m still puzzled that he never got a decent shot in the top grade. He would have made an entrenched first-grader at another club, in another time, and that’s why he’s so high on this list. I think he was the first player I ever identified as killing it in the lower grades and wondering why he wasn’t in the team.
Chris McQueen One of my favourites to ever wear the cardinal and myrtle, a Queensland representative and Souths premiership winner. Runs great lines, tackles well and is a wizard in the air. However he did his best work in the second row and I’m rating wingers here. He was never a bad winger - he’s a great player in general - but he was always a backrower playing on the wing. Too slow to really cut it. Ended Jharal Yow Yeh’s career in agonising fashion.
Joe Burgess Not one of the Burgii. Joe burst onto Australian radars with a couple of good performances for England, so naturally the Roosters had to have him. Then halfway through 2016 they realised they didn’t want him and he wound up at Souths. He went alright, but he found out the hard way that the NRL is in a different galaxy of difficulty to the Super League, so he gritted his teeth, did his best and bailed back to the motherland as soon as he could.
Lee Hookey Lee had a brief time in the sun as a Souths junior who actually looked like he could make something of himself and wasn’t immediately snapped up by another club (he did eventually sign with the Dragons). Tall and rangy, he had the hallmarks of a good player but never developed the defence to be a top line player. He certainly wasn’t as bad as most of the players on this list. Laziness and complacency were Hookey's real downfall, not a lack of ability. It was easy to be a superstar at Souths back then and feel like you didn't need to put in the effort.
Michael Oldfield A bargain pickup and used sparingly by Souths, Maguire seeming to prefer Goober Gray to him. Didn’t do a lot for us, but didn’t do a lot wrong either. Would later sign with Canberra and make a mockery of Campbell Graham, which was the style at the time.
Wise Kativerata Scored a hat-trick in Souths famous win against Melbourne on the 8th of June, 2003. With scores locked at 14 all at half time, Souths came out firing in the second half to win 41-14 against a Melbourne side featuring Billy Slater, Matt Geyer, Scott Hill, Matt Orford, Cameron Smith, Stephen Kearney, Dallas Johnson and David Kidwell. Billy Slater dropped more ball in this game than he did in the rest of his career. Wise Kativerata was never really a force again, but this one game elevates him on the list substantially. That one game, at that time, was like getting a mid-year Christmas and your present was a blowjob from Ana de Armas, so Wise enters folklore.
Jamie Simpson I think I remember Simpson as being better than he actually was. A nuggety little outside back with a laid-back attitude and a great smile, I think I rate him higher than I should because he came through in the Talanoa years and I liked anyone who wasn’t Talanoa. He scored a hat-trick against the Roosters once, which is an automatic bump up the ladder. He made history when he accidentally collided with referee Tony De Las Heras in a linebreak. De Las Heras then fell into the knees of the incoming Tonie Carroll and was knocked unconscious, with Phil Haines taking over as referee. Simpson was a toiler, and like I said, I like the toilers. The competent ones anyway.
Shaune Corrigan He did the job. A ranga version of Shane Marteene. He was never brilliant but I can’t remember him doing anything particularly bad either. I just remember someone who tackled hard and ran harder. Another toiler. There's still something off about gingers in Rugby League though.
Adam MacDougall A Newcastle and Blues legend, brought to Souths at the back end of his career. Was still a solid footballer and a good winger, even then, but was an absolute nut-job. Clinically insane. His antics and ego dragged down morale and he had to go, but he was solid enough on the field (I believe he set a meters gained record at fullback that was only broken by RTS recently, but it's late and I couldn't be bothered looking it up) and I grudgingly put him here. Halfway through the list - seems about right actually.
Yileen “Buddy” Gordon More of a center, but spent the odd game on the wing. Roughly the same size, shape and hardness on the mohs scale as a tackling bag. Had all the potential to be one of those indigenous superstars like Amos Roberts or Nathan Blacklock but never put in the effort. Had a real problem with arrogance and laziness. His career wasn’t helped by putting his dick in a hotdog bun and serving it to Russell Crowe. Oddly enough is still kicking around the lower grades.
Luke Capewell This is an interesting one. Used predominantly as a fullback early on before Jason Taylor switched him to wing. Coming up through the grades Capewell was one of the most electric halves on the scene and Jason Taylor constantly played him out of position, ensuring he never lived up to his potential. Taylor had this obsession with playing John Sutton at pivot (Wayne Bennett has him at second row, Michael Maguire won a premiership with him at second row, but Taylor refused to budge) and a number of very good halves (like Craig Wing) had to suffer for it. Did score a hat-trick on the wing once, so he’s higher up due to that and the potential he could have had if he’d been used correctly.
Wade McKinnon Was simply horrible at Souths. Dropped ball, stupid passes, missed tackles, getting thrown bodily over the sideline by Tallis - everything he touched turned into shit. Then he left and played for other clubs like Parramatta and the Warriors and was one of the best fullbacks in the game for a long period. Down the list because of how bad he was at Souths, further up because he was a deadset superstar elsewhere, so maybe it wasn’t all him.
Kane Morgan Played only played one game. But it was a win against Manly, so that’s worth more than the average.
Justin Brooker Has the distinction of being the Wests Magpies last ever supporter’s player-of-the-year before they merged with Balmain. Left Souths with a year to go on his contract to pursue a religious career. I honestly had to be reminded he existed.
Sam Latu Apparently played two games for Souths. I honestly don’t even remember that he existed. That probably sums up this middle portion of the list. Not good enough to be remembered, not bad enough to be unforgettable.
John Tamanika The same as Sam Latu. This was during the heady days of 2008, where some positions were decided by fans looking under their seats and seeing if they’d won a spot in the team.
Richie Kennar I didn’t like what little I saw of him. Too many errors defensively, too many errors in general. But then, he played right wing under Anthony Siebold and Siebs seems to coach his right wingers to be awful, so maybe it isn’t Kennar’s fault.
Justin Hunt While certainly nowhere near as incompetent as other wingers on this list, he was never good. Just less bad than the people below him. I have never seen someone who lost their footing or just plain fell over as much as Justin Hunt, as if no one told him about studs. Hunt probably would have made a decent first-grader if he wasn't constantly falling over like a Keystone Cops film.
Germaine Paulson One of those players who just never came on. Looked the goods in trials and reserve grade, but never got going in first grade. I can't remember if he was decent or if I rated him so highly because he wasn't whatever muppet was playing in the top grade at the time. I remember wanting him to succeed though.
Sitiveni Moceidreke Yet another one hit wonder. Scored the only try in a loss to the Roosters and was never seen again.
John Olive Was going to be the next big thing, that combination of size, skill and pace that we’re always promised. His only appearance for Souths was a loss to the Tigers. Then the Titans bought into the hype and threw cash at him only to realise he never was that good. Then Canterbury learned the same lesson. I'd rather have John Oliver on the wing than John Olive.
Aaron Gray This is really telling, that Aaron Gray isn't in the bottom ten worst wingers. I don’t rate Aaron Gray at all. I’m exceedingly glad he’s now a lower grader at the Sharks. He was slow, out of place and at times rather stupid. A winger that scores one try in a year is not someone valuable to the team. That there are so many players below him on this list tell you about Souths journey.
Joven Clarke Joven “The Javelin” Clarke was the first of a line of South’s “gimmick” players. A former representative sprinter, there was nobody in the NRL faster than him. Unfortunately he was the same size and build as a smurf and so got thrown around by every other player he came across - hence “The Javelin”. Oddly enough when the first Rugby League Live game came out for the PS2, Joven was the best player in the competition, owing to his perfect 10 scores in speed, acceleration and agility. Unfortunately his meat-world body wasn’t as good as his digital self and he leaked a lot more tries than he scored.
Roy Bell Another gimmick, like a slightly bigger, slightly slower clone of Joven Clarke. Got picked up and thrown around like a hacky sack. Could sniff out the odd try though, and I do recall him sneaking through for a meat pie simply by being too small for the forwards to lean down and catch, so he rates higher than quite a few wingers on that alone.
Dane Nielsen Neilsen had a very successful career with the Storm. Then a less successful time at the Warriors. Then a horrible two games with Saints. For some reason Madge thought he could get him back to his prime. He was wrong.
Owen "Jenny" Craigie Yep, Souths tried it. Paul Langmack thought “hey, let’s put this chubby five-eighth on the wing and see what happens”. It was never tried again, and rightfully so, but Souths actually won that game - Justin Smith coolly potting a sideline conversion to break the Tigers hearts. I can't say how much Craigie contributed to that win though.
Brad Watts There’s a story, probably apocryphal, that when Souths were readmitted to the comp there was a track-work jockey working at the William-Inglis stables in Randwick who wanted a shot at rugby league. Souths’ recruitment manager at the time, who I won’t name but it rhymes with “pus”, said that this jockey was too small and would never make first grade. So we traded him to Melbourne and got Brad Watts instead. Now, none of this is Brad Watts’ fault, but I’m still blaming him for it. He also tended to get ragdolled on the field a lot.
Michael Berne One appearance and one try to his name, in an agonisingly close loss to the Cowboys. There are a lot worse on this list, but that shouldn't mean as much as it does.
Steve Skinnon A junior dual-international, we bought him off the Roosters where he was playing at prop and second-row. Supercoach Langmack stuck him on the wing. How do you think that went?
John Olzard Three games in 2002, no games in 2003 despite being on the books and Souths only winning 3 games. Has a perfect goalkicking record in the top-grade though, so there’s that.
Jared Taylor Played as many games and scored more tries for France than he did for both Souths and Cronulla. Which is to say three and one respectively.
Damon Alley-Tovio Four games across two seasons. No points, no wins. That I rate certain players below him speaks volumes of them, not him.
Ahmad Bajouri 11 games for Souths in 2003 and never once crossed the stripe. Let us not speak of him again.
Garth Wood Winner of reality television boxing show “The Contender”. A much better boxer than he ever was a winger. Actually debuted at center, in the same game as John Sutton. Bagged two tries and funnily enough looked like the better player at the time. Known by fans as “The Pointer” on account of him always pointing at things, sometimes even things related to the game.
Mark Christensen Played one game for Souths, a 56-6 hiding by the Tigers which featured Garth Wood at fullback of all things. I think I’ve blocked this one out of my memory like a PTSD victim.
Wes Tillott Before the guys lower than him on the last came along, I thought he was the worst winger I’d ever seen. I wish he still was. Until Campbell Graham came along I’d never seen anyone make such truly bizarre defensive decisions that cost games.
Joel Reddy I always said that having a cardboard cutout of Joel Reddy on the field would be more effective than having Joel Reddy on the field because at least opponents would have to move around or push away the cardboard cutout. Reddy had an absolutely paranormal ability to be somewhere he wasn’t supposed to. He was never where the action was, the section of the pitch that had Joel Reddy was often accompanied by a flock of seagulls. Just generally not good at the game at all, poor in all facets. They say the apple doesn’t fall far from the tree, but “Rocket” Rod Reddy’s tree is in a different dimension to his son. I can only assume some sort of adoption or switched at birth scenario.
Fetuli Talanoa You have to understand the excitement when Tulz burst onto the scene. He had all of the makings of a superstar. He debuted a year before Israel Folau, but watching them in the lower grades if you had to pick one, you’d have gone with Talanoa. He was just like Folau only bigger, stronger and faster. In fact if you asked me to design the perfect winger, physically, I’d come up with something a lot like Fetuli Talanoa. The problem was that none of his physical attributes meant diddly squat on the field. Apparently he was a demi-god at training, but something happened when he took to the field. Like he got nervous or something. Because on game day he just fell to pieces, every time. He fumbled nearly every catch. He dropped regulation hitups. He mistimed jumps. He made poor defensive read after poor defensive read. Everything that could go wrong did go wrong with Tulz, up to and including occasionally running in the wrong direction. He was like some bizzaro, mirror image, Mr Hyde version of the gun wingers of the time like Folau and Hayne. (If you’re only familiar with recent Hayne, understand that for a few years there Hayne actually was as good as he thought he was)
Campbell Graham Campbell Graham is, quite simply, the worst rugby league player I’ve ever seen. Someone who is just fundamentally awful, as if you’d taken a random off the street from a country with no knowledge of the game and put them on the wing. Most of what he does is wrong and when things go right it seems like it was accidental. Yes he’s scored 4 tries is 3 games this year - that’s because he’s on the end of one of the most lethal left edges ever, as I said with Rob Jennings, anyone could score those tries. When he didn’t have that structure inside him he scored 7 times in two seasons. That isn’t a great strike rate. Campbell is like an amalgamation of every bad winger on this list - he has the clumsiness of Talanoa, the inability of Reddy, the defense of Tillott, the general sense of looking lost of Wood. He has such poor defense that there’s a move he pulls regularly that I’ve only ever seen him do, in all my time watching rugby league, so I’ve dubbed it “The Graham”. That’s when the winger rushes up to tackle not the second man in, but the third. This leaves a gap the size of Siberia for the opposition to score in, with no hope of the fullback covering it. Even when he does tackle it isn’t effective - he somehow let Brian Kelly score despite being directly in front of him and already covering the ball. It’s rare that Campbell finds himself near the ball. I feel he has some genuine problems with spatial awareness and proprioception. When he jumps for kicks he’s often wrong by a margin of meters. He’s always too far forward or too far back. All of this was evident in the game against the Titans last week, where my frustrations with Campbell Graham crystallised into one solid moment that makes him worse than any other winger on this list, bar one. When attempting to field a rolling Titans kick, Campbell was presented with a number of options. A gifted footballer would have picked it up and made meters (see Anthony Don’s miraculous one handed pickup from a couple of years ago). A competent footballer would have dived on the ball to ensure possession. Even a bad winger, like Talanoa or Wood, would have left the ball for the fullback to deal with, which was still a legitimate option. Campbell Graham opted for none of these. Under no pressure at all from the kick chase, and with plenty of time on his hands, he did the worst thing you could possibly do in that situation. He kicked the ball forward. Why? I couldn’t tell you. I don’t think he could tell you. Then he panicked, because he was about to hand the opposition a full set in excellent field position. So he chased the ball and then went to dive on it, like he originally should have. Only now, because he kicked it towards the defense, it was a lot harder. He dove on it and fumbled it, because he’s incredibly clumsy. The Titans were allowed back into the game because of that. And for good measure he got himself kicked in the face, because he put his face next to everyone’s boots. In 2018 he was directly responsible for over 33% of tries scored against South Sydney. If you expand that to tries scored in the set after an error by Graham the number rockets up to 64%. Above all else, he directly and personally cost South Sydney their 22nd premiership. The only reason he isn’t last on this list is that he seems like a genuinely good person and at least he’s trying hard. He’s failing, constantly, but he’s trying. And that makes him better than...
Chris Walker Chris Walker is one of the worst humans to have ever lived. His brothers, Shane and Ben, are legends. Shane Walker is one of South Sydney fans favourite players. But Chris Walker is the absolute scum of the earth. There is a special place in hell reserved specifically for him. Once upon a time Chris Walker was a pretty decent winger. When he was at the Broncos he was actually a Queensland representative, playing 6 games for the Maroons and scoring in all of them. In 2003 he was South Sydney’s marquee signing. The first real big name they’d attracted to the club and the sign that they were starting to rebuild, after having to scrap together a team in 2002 following their readmission. Chris Walker was going to be cornerstone of their efforts to rebuild moving forward. As it happened, Walker wasn’t so good without the rest of the Broncos (or the Maroons, who were pretty much the Broncos at the time). Take away Langer, Lockyer, Berrigan, Webke , Tallis and Civoniceva and Chris Walker was...pedestrian. At best. He played five games for Souths, in which he wasn’t worth anywhere near his price tag. He found life tough when you were part of a team that got bad calls from refs, instead of the charmed Brisbane bubble he’d come up through. So after 5 games of dross, he quit. He earned the nickname “Chris Walkout”. He cited “personal reasons” for his release, but it was well documented that those personal reasons were “not wanting to play in a shit team”. Then immediately after he quit he rubbed salt into the wounds by doing the worst thing you can possibly do to Souths - he signed with the Roosters. Fortunately that would work out well for Souths supporters, as Walker’s poor defence, ball handling and general ineptitude not only cost the Roosters the 2003 grand final, but the 2004 title as well. Karma is a bitch. (I maintain if the Roosters had played winger - and Souths juniour - Gavin Leister instead they’d have won both years, Walker was that influential). I’ll never forget being at a game, I think it was against the Tigers, and coming around a corner to see a group of little old ladies - all in their 70’s and 80’s, about six of them - screaming the filthiest, dirtiest insults I’d ever heard. I’ve been a comic for 15 years and I’ve still never heard anything close to that combination of swear words. I was with my father at the time and we were speculating as to what would cause such a reaction in a group of old ladies. We surmised that someone must have stolen a purse from them or something and been apprehended. Then we walked further around the corner and saw Chris Walker, who had come to watch his brother Shane play, and it all became clear.