The Penrith Panthers announced last week that they would release State Of Origin forward Ben Ross because of salary cap issues the club was having.
Needless to say, this news wasn’t very well received by Panthers fans.
Just weeks after signing Preston Campbell to a one year deal, the panthers now find themselves having to release a player who had two years left on his current contract and who is worth more on the open market then his current contract pays!
Ben Ross was a Panthers fanatic growing up in Queensland. This about that, this kid following a team from Sydney, that wasn’t very good, he gets a chance to play for the club he loves, he wins a title with that club, steps up to become an Origin caliber player…and they want to release him part way through his contract!
Its a disgrace!
Penrith have never been a very well run club. Even during the recent successful years, Penrith management has been able to find a way to stuff things up.
From our Grand Final willing side in 2003 we have lost Scott Sattler, Ryan Girdler and Paul Whatuira. That fair enough, but when you consider we NEVER replaced Scott Sattler or Ryan Girdler and we got Paul Franze to replace the current New Zealand test center in Whatuira….you can see that something is very wrong with the club.
Thats not to mention the fact we signed Amos Roberts (Another we never replaced!), saw him develop into a star, then let him go to the Roosters while at the same time losing Preston Campbell to the new Gold Coast Franchise.
All of these losses, and yet we STILL have to release one of out best, most consistent players in Ben Ross! Is it any wonder Panthers fans are pissed off?
Ross has been linked to the Melbourne Storm and is likely to sign a 4-5 year deal in what is a gift from god for the Storm outfit. It not every day you have a 25 year old State Of Origin prop land at your doorstep.
As for Penrith, we lose Ross but we hold onto over paid, under achievers like Swain, Rodney, Galea, Franze, Rogers, Howland, McLean…all players that have shown they can not make much (If any) impact at NRL level and most of which are second rowers, something we already have an embarrassment of riches of with Puletua, Waterhouse and Pritchard in the lineup!
Expect many more years of poor football out of the Panthers. This is just the beginning of the end of what was a short but sweet two year period of winning football.
A well known Rugby League writer, League Freak has established a reputation among supporters of the game for his fearless commentary and unmatched insight. With a reach that spans both sides of the globe, League Freak has produced an independent network that allows him to distribute content to his many thousands of followers. He is the owner and main author of LeagueFreak.com
Apr 22, 2021 0