Daniel Nichols – Has Blake Ferguson Really Turned A Corner?

Yesterday (7th May) Blake Ferguson signed a 2 yr contract extension with the Canberra Raiders after a cracking game against the Storm. News reports have referred to the centre as a “reformed bad boy” amongst other things. He’s even being spoken of as a potential State Of Origin centre.

First of all unless Josh Morris, Michael Jennings and Jarryd Hayne are all injured this weekend (touch wood) Ferguson isn’t in the top 3. For the record I believe Merritt and Morris (if fit) should be the NSW wingers, with Uate third choice. Hayne’s best bet is a spot in the centres, where he proved he was more than capable a few years back.

Blake Ferguson has a history of stupid behaviour. Ferguson has not been convicted of anything and has not done anything to land him in the same category as Robert Lui etc but he has proven himself to be prone to a moment of stupidity.

When at the Sharks Ferguson infuriated fans by saying he wanted to leave for a club that could win a premiership, ending up signing for the Raiders, a side in the same boat as Cronulla in terms of being a genuine title threat. Ferguson was caught abusing Sharks fans after the side was belted by Penrith in Blake’s last game for the club.

After moving to Canberra he has been dropped to NSW cup, suspended by the club and told he is on his last chance. He broke an alcohol ban and was ejected from a music festival for allegedly spitting on patrons and causing trouble.

Less than 2 months ago Ferguson lost his drinking buddy when Josh Dugan was sent packing after repeatedly showing disrespect to the club and officials. Ferguson was snapped (by Dugan who obviously wanted to be caught) drinking a Cruiser, a sack-able offence for any man over the age of 15 in its own, blatantly disobeying a drinking ban after skipping a rehab session. He was called in front of the leadership team and told to shape up or ship out.

He served out a shorter than expected ban and returned to great fanfare. Ferguson has been playing well before putting in a great effort against the Storm ending their unbeaten run. After one great game suddenly he is reformed, re-signed and said to be a State Of Origin contender.

If Ferguson was to put in 5 or 6 performances like he did against the Storm then yes by all means throw his name into SOO contention but no man is “reformed” after 1 good game. Todd Carney won the Daly M at the Roosters after being sacked by the Raiders only to be sacked by the club 6 months later for repeated offences. Only now can Carney be considered as back on track, Ferguson doesn’t get to carry the reformed tag after one good game.

I hope he goes on to play Origin, I remember seeing Ferguson score ridiculous tries in the corners of Shark Park and thinking this kid could play Origin, and I still believe that to be true … but not yet. Morris is head and shoulders above him, Jennings is head shoulders and then some ahead.

Good luck Fergo in your quest, but you’re not there yet.

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