James Packer joined Russell Crowe and Wayne Bennett to help Souths land Latrell Mitchell. Aaron Francis/The Australian
James Packer joined Russell Crowe and Wayne Bennett to help Souths land Latrell Mitchell. Aaron Francis/The Australian

What’s the Buzz: Big guns fire up for Latrell

SAINT:

Knox Gibson won over some of the biggest names in the cricketing media after winning a contest to become the SCG's "junior journo''. Twelve-year-old Knox, who lost his arm in a lawnmower accident, had Brett Lee, Mark Waugh and Isa Guha fearing he may one day take their jobs after conducting five-star interviews with Nathan Lyon and Glenn McGrath. Knox, who hopes to represent Australia as a Paralympian, is pictured with Guha and cricket fan Abby Hamm, 4.

 

Knox Gibson (left) and Abby Hamm (right) won the SCG Trust's ‘roving reporter’ competition. Picture: Kate Theodor-Gallagher
Knox Gibson (left) and Abby Hamm (right) won the SCG Trust's ‘roving reporter’ competition. Picture: Kate Theodor-Gallagher

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SINNER:

The NRL for their stupid salary cap exemption laws. Seriously, can someone - other than the NRL spin department - please explain why Souths got a $1 million concession for retiring Sam Burgess, while the Bulldogs will only be spared $350,000 for losing Kieran Foran to injury in an NRL-sanctioned international?

SHOOSH:

Who was the in-strife NRL agent conducting business as usual during the week? Despite facing sanctions from the NRL over his dealings, the agent was spotted holding talks with an NRL coach after turning up to the Sydney-based club's headquarters.

SHOOSH II:

Adam Doueihi has been shunted to the Rabbitohs' bench having been promised a starting spot. We've heard Doueihi was told he would replace Cody Walker as five-eighth and then promised the fullback spot after Walker was re-signed. He has now been relegated to a utility role because of Latrell Mitchell. At least two clubs have a starting spot for Doueihi should he burr-up at being benched.

 

 

Tim Tszyu treats himself to luxury sports car as we wait on a deal to fight Jeff Horn. Picture: Dylan Robinson
Tim Tszyu treats himself to luxury sports car as we wait on a deal to fight Jeff Horn. Picture: Dylan Robinson

 

SPOTTED:

Tim Tszyu driving around San Souci in his Corvette. Our next great boxer took delivery of his first classic car last week after treating himself to the 1981 Chevrolet Corvette. Tszyu has been forced to switch to southpaw to drive the car, with the steering wheel on the left-hand side. Tszyu will be able to add to his collection when he signs off on a deal to fight Jeff Horn.

SPOTTED II:

A bevy of Bulldogs players having a back-to-work drink last Saturday night at a swanky joint in Barangaroo. Rewarding themselves with a cold one for getting through the first week back after the break, several Bulldogs players and their partners made the trip into town. Kieran Foran and his new wife Karina Ormsby headlined the group.

SPOTTED III:

The Steve Smith/Marnus Labuschagne bromance has continued in India, with the joined-at-the-hip batsmen spotted sharing a coffee at Suzette cafe in Mumbai. The pair love their time in the middle, too, combining for 96 runs off 94 balls in the second ODI in Rajkot.

SPOTTED IV:

A high-profile NRL agent meeting with a client that reportedly wants to quit his club. Oh to be a fly on the wall

James Packer joined Russell Crowe and Wayne Bennett to help Souths land Latrell Mitchell. Aaron Francis/The Australian
James Packer joined Russell Crowe and Wayne Bennett to help Souths land Latrell Mitchell. Aaron Francis/The Australian

HOW JAMES PACKER HELPED SOUTHS GET LATRELL

The movie star, the master-coach and the money man - how could Latrell Mitchell say no?

The Sunday Telegraph can reveal James Packer joined Russell Crowe and Wayne Bennett to form arguably the greatest, and certainly the most extraordinary, rugby league recruitment team ever assembled.

Packing two Golden Globes, an Academy Award, seven NRL premierships and more than $3.5 billion, Packer, Bennett and Crowe combined to deliver the Rabbitohs a future South Sydney great.

Just a day after Bennett met the runaway Rooster at a secret location in Sydney, Packer flew to Coffs Harbour on his private jet to join Crowe and Mitchell for a private dinner, catered for by a personal chef.

While details of the dinner at Crowe's luxury Nana Glen estate were revealed by The Daily Telegraph last week, Packer's attendance and involvement in the bid were kept a closely guarded secret.

Until today.

The casino mogul and Crowe teamed up to convince Mitchell that South Sydney was his new home. Mitchell travelled back to Sydney intent on becoming a Rabbitoh.

After knocking back South's first offer, Mitchell agreed to sign last Sunday on a one-year deal with another year option in the club's favour. The deal is estimated to be worth $1.4 million over two years.

Despite signing a deal worth less than the $3.2 million he had been offered by the Roosters over four years, Mitchell is content with the contract that could amount to just $600,000 should Souths not exercise the second year.

The Roosters were stunned that Mitchell accepted the deal after he reportedly "laughed'' when they made him the $800,000-a-year offer.

Avoiding an ugly showdown with their oldest rivals, the Roosters backed away from a compensation demand and released Mitchell from the final year of his deal.

But on one condition.

He must pay out his former manager, Steve Deacon.

 

Beau Ryan and his dancing partner Megan Wragg ahead of Dancing With the Stars 2020 on Channel 10.
Beau Ryan and his dancing partner Megan Wragg ahead of Dancing With the Stars 2020 on Channel 10.

CLICK HERE TO SIGN UP AND START PICKING YOUR TEAM FOR 2020

 

BEAU RYAN'S NEXT MOVE

Fleet-footed on the field, Beau Ryan has swapped his football boots for tap shoes, with the NRL funny man announced as a contestant on this year's Dancing With The Stars show.

Following in the dance steps of Ian Roberts and Matt Cooper, Ryan will become the latest former NRL player to waltz across TV screens.

"I am always up for a challenge," Ryan said. "And this will certainly be a challenge.''

Ryan has graduated from the NRL to become one of rugby league's greatest success stories with a giggle-and-gag role on the NRL Footy Show launching a career on the small screen. After landing the prized role of host of The Amazing Race, Ryan is one of Channel 10's brightest stars.

Ryan sent us this behind-the-scenes shot of him and his dance partner, Megan Wragg, preparing for practice. We reckon Wragg has her work cut out.

"I thought I could dance,'' he said. "But after my first rehearsals, I should have taken Channel 10's first offer and gone to the jungle.''

 

ADDO CARR LINKED TO BUNNIES

With the dust yet to settle on the Latrell Mitchell deal, South Sydney have already been linked to another NRL big name.

Less than 48 hours after announcing they had signed Mitchell, there are noises emerging that Souths are now interested in Josh Addo-Carr, the man known as the Fox, and preparing to offer the Storm a player swap.

South Sydney have reportedly shopped Alex Johnston, Adam Doueihi and Dane Gagai to rival clubs.

 

Josh Dugan looks on during a charity basketball match for the Starlight Foundation at Qudos Bank Arena. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)
Josh Dugan looks on during a charity basketball match for the Starlight Foundation at Qudos Bank Arena. (Photo by Mark Evans/Getty Images)

JOSH DUGAN ON THE MOVE?

Josh Dugan's future remains in doubt with the Sharks still shopping the veteran back to rival clubs.

With Dugan, Shaun Johnson, Andrew Fifita, Aaron Woods and Matt Moylan combining to swallow half of Cronulla's total NRL salary cap, Cronulla are desperate to clear some space. Signed on a four-year deal worth a reported $750,000 a season, Dugan is contracted until the end of 2021.

 

Supercars driver Chaz Mostert is selling his Ford Mustang after signing to join Holden.
Supercars driver Chaz Mostert is selling his Ford Mustang after signing to join Holden.

CHAZ MOSTERT FORD FOR SALE

For sale: Unwanted Ford. Forced to sell after defecting to the Dark Side. Will swap for a Holden. Call Chaz.

We can confirm the silver Ford Mustang with the "Mozzie" number plates that last week was posted on a car sales site belongs to none other than Supercars star Chaz Mostert.

Asking $60,000, Mostert has been forced to sell his prized V8 after signing a deal to drive for a Holden team next year.

We are hoping his Mustang wasn't crashed as many times as his last race car

 

MORE NEWS

Latrell Mitchell set to be NRL's biggest fullback at 108kg

SuperCoach NRL: Players set to bounce back in 2020

 

SIXERS TRANSFORM SCG WITH RAINBOWS

The Sydney Sixers continue to lead the community when it comes to social responsibility by celebrating the diversity of Sydney with their second BBL Pride Party.

The SCG was turned into a sea of rainbow colours for the rain-marred clash against the Hobart Hurricanes on Thursday night to mark the occasion, including the painting of the fielding circle on the hallowed turf.

The players also had an education session with Dr Ryan Storr, a director at Proud 2 Play, the country's foremost authorities on LGBTI+ inclusion in sport.

We reckon the NRL should follow suit and get on board with a "rainbow round".

 

BULLDOGS LEGEND BACKS BOARD

Steve Mortimer will publicly support the current Bulldogs board after contacting Lynne Anderson last week to reaffirm his allegiance ahead of the next election.

In a move that will kill off any suggestion of a split after "Turvey" gave up his board position, he emailed Anderson with a heartfelt endorsement.

In the email, the Bulldogs legend also committed to continuing with the club as a "proud" ambassador.

Mortimer wrote: "My brother Peter, Joe Thomas and Adrian Turner are all true-blue Bulldogs people who I know will work very hard and passionately to get our club back on top … for 2020/21."



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