Monday, 16 May 2011

Retro Richard Moore - D'ya know

Richard Moore, d'ya know, before he started down the path of darkness d'ya know, (white boots, d'ya know, Westwood bag, d'ya know, etc etc) with a classic TV interview, d'ya know, with the nice man from SKY with the fizz, d'ya know, and a hundred quid, d'ya know.

D'ya know, belting bit of footage and a worthy cause as well.

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Kicking Around

Now then

Much to report after a busy couple of weeks for the membership.

We start in the Championship where Steven Pickersgill was severely reprimanded after a Grade 2 "kicking the football" offence in the recent fixture against Toulouse. Look lad, you can't go round doing stuff like that if you want your chance with the bigger lads next year in Super Duper League and with TV cameras present as well

If it weren't bad enough for Craig Huby and his broken kneecap, he wasn't over impressed being hauled up to PFU Towers to explain the arrival of a white booted Martin Aspinwall sticking his melon in the front row of the scrum during the recent game against Leeds. Huby, god bless him, twanged the heart strings of a few of the committee members by tipping up with his less than three week old son with him to the meeting, claiming the wife was busy entertaining his daughter and he was a "modern parent". A clever ploy by Mr Huby but the Chairman still has his heart of stone and a reprimand was issued to the club as a whole.

Big Eorl at Huddersfield caused consternation t'other day by posting his new boots on his twitter account for one and all to see.

These boots are not acceptable lad. Bring tha cheque book, oh and a pen as well.

We also apologise for printing this picture and we acknowledge the author of this picture and his intellectual (er) rights

And, to boot we also think you should volunteer to be the new Back to Black ambassador as a punishment

Richard Moore heaps more disgrace on himself and the good folk of North Wales after his disgraceful antics at Headingley t'other Saturday Not satisfied after getting a ban after being clouted by some full back t'other Monday his left footed bomb and subsequent chase were clearly seen by one and all on NATIONAL FREE TO AIR Television. What the hell are you thinking lad?

Down in sunny Wakefield, with the antics of Kyle Amor running across the line, showing and going and running through gaps to score has gone down like the proverbial lead balloon. Granted it was against lower clash opposition but Mr Amor has been sent a warning letter reminding him of his duties towards the Union and we expect his conduct to improve in the near future.

The committee were saddened by the decision to charge Nathan Brown over comments made after the Leeds v Huddersfield game with regards to letting his big blokes look after the little ones. The prospect of seeing members going mano a mano on the meadow have now been dashed for some time to come.

We were saddened to hear the news from Australia about former member Sam Burgess being knocked out for the rest of the year with a bad injury and the committee would like to wish the lad a speedy recovery and we hope to see him back on the paddock soon rather than filling up the twitter feed of the Chairman. Maybe he can remind his younger brother, Thomas, about this try scoring lark and maybe look to the effort of Frank Watene as inspiration.

Now we like Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook, despite him being a Southerner and all that. He needs to clean up his act big time, the language he uses on his twitter account made the Hon Secretary's eyes water so much there's a kleenex shortage at the Towers. He needs to learn the act of banter as well, because at the moment he's an expert in shanter. (thanks @GavWilson ) He also needs to learn not to mess with Nicholas Scruton, who put him quickly back in his place with an eloquent put down.

The PFU advice line somehow opened via our twitter account this week, we had an enquiry from @Craig311981

"I need help, my son isn't a prop, he is 7, I've just bought him blue and white boots, with pink stripes, where do I pay the fine"

Apparently this @craig311981 is a prop forward encouraging his lad not to follow union guidelines. He was taking liberties until he explained that his offspring was happy hiding in the back. Toughen the lad up and make sure he follows in your boots.

We're more than happy to help anyone who gets in touch on the twitter, just don't be offended by the reply.

Thanks again to this weeks dobbers and dabbers, @Kevbateman, @MatthewAHorton @petevickers @atomictrain @jourdmart @RobNixon586 @neilbarraclough @andywiz @garrylad

Oh, and we'd like to plug the fund raising barbecue at Odsal on't 3rd July for the Floods and Earthquake victims. ISC have sponsored it and there is a Barby, beer and some Touch Rugby competition. To get a team in that, contact friend of the Union Ricky Wilby on 07598 564996 or follow him on twitter at @RickyWilby or @scratchingshed2 for more information about the do,


This has been brought to our attention, it is one of THE darkest days of our fine Union in recent years.

We do not expect any of our members to repeat this!!!!

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Union laughing stock

Not this union, you understand, the other one. Rugby union. Yes, it comes as a shock to us all that they can make themselves look more foolish than anyone thought possible, but they've done it. It's farewell from the PFU to Willie Mason (Hull East) after a farcical time in England with Hull KR playing the rulebook like a finely tuned piano. Having given up on attempting to get him a Tongan passport, he's now off to play the fifteen-man game in France where he'll be deployed as a fancy-dan centre. Yes, that's right. Willie Mason - THE Willie Mason - a fancy-dan centre. Beggars belief doesn't it. There is no word yet whether Rovers will be retaining the huge pile of unsold 'Mason 23' jerseys in anticipation of a move to sign Huddersfield's Keith for next season.

Easter is always a busy period and that's no different at PFU headquarters. We had Paul Wood and Garreth Carvell (Warrington) reported to us for potential try-scoring breaches against Salford on Good Friday, but Carvell's was well within guidelines while Wood's may normally have incurred a fine, he successfully used the "but Salford were utter rubbish" defence. Moreover, we caught sight of this picture on Twitter of him doing sterling work on the union's behalf, so how could we be anything other than lenient.

Paul Johnson (Wakefield) continues to blot his copybook with fancy footwear and a 30-metre try against Castleford. He should learn from Andy Coley (Wigan) who went on a similar run, realised his mistake and knocked-on over the line against Wakefield on the Monday.

Disturbing scenes at the Odsal Superdome on the Thursday where an entire scrum packed down in white boots. Even Andy Lynch - not normally the rebellious type - succumbed to temptation and we'll be calling in the Bradford and Leeds shop stewards for a cup of tea and a chat. Lynch was also reported for his try in that game, but a review of the available footage showed he was OK.

Karl Temata's (London West) try against Hull KR, also on Monday, was reported to us. He broke the line 10 metres out and went over unopposed, but his flapping mullet was taken into account when deciding no further action would be taken. It's not been a vintage year for Richard Moore (Wales North) who is rapidly becoming the worst offender. Whilst wearing white boots against Leeds on Monday, he was also chinned by a full-back. Yes, he got his retaliation in afterwards, but is the motto of this fine union not (among other things) Thou Shalt Get Thy Retaliation In First Lad. Meanwhile on Tuesday, there was precious little going on at Huddersfield where Nathan Brown has yet to follow through on his threats to call open season between the big lads. Get on with it lad.

More Twitter nonsense from the disgraceful Luke Burgess (Leeds) who revealed he was getting waxed. Apparently, that hurts, so we feel obliged to add to the pain by stinging him with a fine. Cough up, young 'un.

Finally, best wishes to reformed character Craig Huby (Castleford). A broken kneecap is a bloody horrible injury and everyone at HQ wishes him a speedy and successful recovery.

Thanks to this week's spotters, namely @W_L_Andy, @andywiz, @MatthewAHorton, @atomictrain, @whatmichaelsays and @exiledwool. Keep up the good work and let us know what you see when you're out and about.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Our new favourite union member

Herewith the latest from PFU Towers.

We like to start on a positive and it's great praise first off to Paul Wood (Warrington) who was involved in a Twitter spat with cheeky half-back Lee Briers about boot colouration. "Black boots all day me, pal", commented Mr Wood after Mr Briers accused him of wearing white. He continued "Only softys wear other colours than black boots". Yes they do indeed sir. Mr Wood has been a favourite of the Chairman for some time given his 100% attitude, all-out style and constant grafting. This has tipped him over into gold star territory.

The big stink at Leeds last Friday can't go uncommented for good and bad reasons. Firstly, Ian Kirke (Leeds) packed down at loose forward. We've only just processed his union membership and that's how he repays us? Treachery. Fine issued. Two fully paid-up members from the Leeds chapter took a liking to cheeky half-back Kevin Brown. First, Kylie Leuluai clobbered him late and gets brownie points for his "I got there as quick as I could" excuse. Later, Ryan Bailey had a crack at Brown after a verbal set-to which sparked a bit of a schemozzle. It was nice to see Luke O'Donnell, the Huddersfield back row, race to get involved and then stand aside, clearly realising that this is an area where union members have first dibs. It's warming to know that non-members respect the traditions of our organisation, but where were the Huddersfield union contingent? Someone needs to speak up in the way that Huddersfield coach Nathan Brown did after the game.

Brown, Nathan that is, suggested that if referees aren't going to protect his half-backs, he'd have to get his big fellers to do it instead. We hope he meant our union membership when he said that and if he's declaring open season for our members on half-backs, we can see a delegation making the trip to the Galpharm a bit more of a regular feature this season. Being a little hooker in his playing days, Brown clearly realises the benefits of protection from union membership and we hope he follows through on his pledge.

The week previously, Mr Bailey also earned himself credit for smashing Willie Mason (Hull East), but his ire may have been better directed at Rhys Lovegrove who was named at loose forward.

Wakefield seem to have their house in order boot-wise. Messrs Kyle Amor, Liam Higgins and Paul King all had appropriate footwear on at the weekend. Only Paul Johnson did not. We're watching, lad.

Some try-scoring breaches to report. Rémi Casty's (Perpignan) effort against Wigan last week was a good 20 yards beyond union guidelines and Tony Puletua (Tellins) backed up a break over 60 metres to take the scoring pass against Wakefield. Andy Lynch (Bradford) was reported to us for his try against Salford, but a review of the video evidence showed it to be well within guidelines.
Wigan's Andy Coley created a try with a kick which will trigger the usual fine and Nathan Massey (Castleford) bagged a hat-trick in an under-20s match. Just because it's not first grade doesn't mean we don't learn these things. Fine issued.

Staying with the Perpignan chapter, shop steward David Ferriol gave little Hull scrum-half Sam Obst a right wallop in the tackle which pleased our observer and we like the cut of Mickael Simon's jib, although someone needs a word about boot colouration. Perhaps Mr Wood when next those sides meet.

Finally, a sad tale of former member Paul Highton, spotted enjoying some refreshment in an Oldham hostelry the other night. "He can't drink to save his life" said our informer, something which can't be said of Steve Molloy who clearly can.

Thanks to our contributors this week, namely @W_L_Andy, @Kendall_17, @Kevbateman, @garrylad and @stumain. Keep em peeled over the ever-busy Easter period. Contact the chairman on his Twitter or leave us a comment below. Thanking you.

Monday, 4 April 2011

Hard or vindictive and a Vivienne Westwood bag

Lots of business to catch up on this week with some highly contentious talking points.

The big one of course is the stink kicked up by Jeff Lima's (Wigan) attack on a vulnerable Chris Clarkson. We can't condone this. Our representative in the stands didn't like it at the time and repeat viewings of the footage doesn't make it look any better. We're all for playing the game hard and not standing for any nonsense, but there's a line and Lima crossed it. There was nothing to be gained by his intervention other than potentially putting the career of a young opponent in jeopardy when said opponent could do nothing about it. It's not big and it's not clever. If Lima has a beef with Mr Clarkson, then there's an appropriate way to deal with it, much like Ben Cross (Leeds) did in the immediate aftermath. It was good work from the big Australian to step in, issue some summary justice and calm it all down. Severe reprimand for Lima, commendation for Cross.

Garreth Carvell (Warrington) may also have crossed a bit of a line when he walloped cheeky Perpignan half-back Scott Dureau late, high and off the ball. At first, it looked like Dureau was seriously hurt, but after a night in hospital he's OK. It's all part of a growing trend. We all like a bit of roughness, but you've got to respect your opponent. Cheap shots do no favours to you or the union. Consider this a general warning.

David Ferriol (Perpignan) is in bother for first flinging a cut-out pass for a try and later going on a weaving, side-stepping 30 metre charge for a quite spectacular try at Warrington. You wouldn't catch Brendan Hill doing that and so the appropriate fine is issued. Currency to depend on where we collect. Congratulations to his team-mate Rémi Casty though, a feisty young character we've had our eye on for a while. He made his 100th appearance for his club last week.

Other try-scorers this week were Ray Cashmere (Salford) and Louie McCarthy-Scarsbrook (Tellins). Cashmere's was raised to us by @CuppaBrew on twitter who says "Not sure if it breaches union rules". It doesn't young man, but you're quite right to be vigilant. McCarthy-Scarsbrook got two, but neither was from more than a few inches, so no case to answer there either.

Boots next. We've been enjoying Nick Fozzard (Castleford) on Twitter, but being amusing is not an acceptable defence for yellow boots. Fellow veteran Karl Temata (London), on the other hand, is to be commended for both his black boots and his burgeoning mullet which wouldn't look out of place on an Australian sheep farm.

At the Castleford v Wales North game the other week, we were alerted by Nevchenko5 to an incident which saw an all-in brawl that saw three backs sent to the sin bin. Where were the membership? Video evidence wasn't conclusive, but we've called both shop stewards in to the office to find out what went on. While we're on the subject of Castleford, we hear that Craig Huby had a lovely evening at Disney on Ice. Hope you're proud of yourself, young man.

Finally, the most heinous crime of the week, month - maybe ever. We're indebted to @garrylad for his inside info on this one and it concerns serial offender Richard Moore (Wales North). His boots offences are racking up at a Huby-esque rate, but he's really blotted his copybook with this one. He was spotted leaving the dressing rooms at Salford proudly clutching a pink Vivienne Westwood bag. We had to look this Westwood character up and it turns out she's nowt to do with Warrington's Ben, not that that would have helped Mr Moore in his defence. Big fine and a letter advising him to future conduct. Also, we've called in his shop steward for a talking to.

Before we sign off, a quick hello to the new visitors who found us via our new best mate Andy Wilson's latest Guardian blog. Welcome aboard and help keep us up to date with the various shenanigans of the membership on here and the Chairman's Twitter.

Thursday, 17 March 2011

Retro prop action

Thanks to Guardian scribbler Andy Wilson for reminding us of this classic clip of Hull KR prop Mark Broadhurst in action in a tour game against Queensland.

Top propping. That's how you deal with cheeky hookers. Cheers for that Andy.

Wednesday, 16 March 2011

A question of fitness

Another week with our ethics committee pouring over yarns of videotape to sort out the good from the bad from the fine-able. One of these days we'll swap the old Betamax for one of these VDs we keep hearing so much about. Anyway, to business and you lot out there have been busy in keeping us informed from around the grounds.

James Graham (Tellins) scored a try in his club's home defeat to London at the weekend and we were alerted by @CuppaBrew on Twitter. "Anyone cited James Graham's try yet?" asked Mr Brew. "It looked like a barge but you can never be sure". You cannot, young sir, and both your vigilance and concern are to be admired, but a thorough review of the footage shows there's nothing to worry about here. Keep up the good work though.

Serial offender Craig Huby (Castleford) has been keeping his nose clean so far this season, but his reputation precedes him these days. He scored in a home win over the Catalan Dragons at the weekend which we were alerted to by @rickywilby on the Twitter, but it was from all of a foot and a half, so he's OK on that front. More disturbing was him taking a goal-line dropout which @W_L_Andy mentions. That's a more serious matter, but rather than a fine, he gets a warning letter as he donated his man of the match money to the charity dinner taking place tonight. That sort of thing should be encouraged.

Daily Mail scribbler Neil Barraclough has also been in touch with a couple of incidents. He cites veteran member Richard Moore (North Wales) for not only wearing green boots, but also putting in a grubber kick - left-footed, just to compound the incident - and tracking back 40 metres to knock a winger into touch. Where does one start? Frankly, the man should know better and a fine is the only action you can expect us to take. Cheque or cash, Mr Moore, you know the drill.

Mr Barraclough was one of a number of people to bring the situation at Leeds to our attention. They've a whole host of PFU stalwarts missing in action and have called up some reservists. We've not sent off a bunch of temporary memberships that size in some time. The one registered member was young Brad Singleton who rocked up in white boots for his Super League debut. What are they teaching him over in LS6? Taking money off a 17-year old feels like taking candy from a baby, but that's fun too, so a letter detailing how he can pay his fine is on it's way. We had a lengthy letter about this too, reprinted here:

"Evening squire. Want an update on footwear breaches at Hedley?

Given Leeds had "no fit props" (if that's not an oxymoron - by rights, there should be no such thing as a fit prop), there's still no excuse for temporary members James Jones-Buchanan (openside) and Ian Kirke (blindside) to be wearing the abominations they were wearing. Kirke was in (shudder) white, while Jones was sporting a red & white flashy number more befitting of a cheeky halfback. To compound this egregious error, he clearly forgot his role and scored a try. In his defence, all the hard work for the score had been done by a fullback...

Credit, though to young Jay Pitts, an early replacement for Kirke, who was sporting the traditional black. While front row may not be his usual position, he's clearly made of the Right Stuff. Good lad.

However, a black mark for the only recognised member of the Union among the matchday 17: Young Brad Singleton. Heralded as the 50th graduate of the Leeds Academy, his tutors clearly need a stern talking to. I don't know what they're teaching them at Kirkstall these days, but his white boots will have earned him a fine on his debut. A most inauspicious introduction to the Union, Singleton. Sort it out, boy.

However, perhaps the most worrying aspect of the result was that Leeds won the game comfortably with no recognised senior prop, thereby completely devaluing the Ancient and Noble Art. For undermining the Fine Traditions, they surely must face a charge of bringing the game into disrepute.

All valid points and we thank our mystery correspondent for his (or her) interest. Regarding the charge of bringing prop forwardry into dispute, that is a serious thing. We need to discuss this properly before making such a decision.

On the flip side for Leeds, a belated congratulations to Ben Cross for planting one on a cheeky half-back at Warrington while kudos also to Ray Cashmere (Salford) for wading in with his fists, although we need a look at his footwear. One report suggested they were silvery. The entire Bradford contingent looked splendid in black boots on Sunday at Huddersfield and the Chairman nearly had a fit the other day when skimming over the newspapers and saw this headline in the Huddersfield local rag. He was halfway out the door chuntering something about "murdering that bald mug in London" before the Treasurer could point out his error.

Thanks to all contributors for their vigilance this week. We do need your input to maintain the Fine Traditions. We also want nominees for the Hall of Fame, so don't be shy and if you fancy scribbling a few lines by way of citation for Hall of Famers, we're also interested. Leave us a comment or mither the Chairman on his Twitter feed, @PFUChairman

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Fines begin to roll in

Lots of stuff arising from the last couple of rounds, so let's get right to it. Many thanks to our friends around the grounds for their reports and your continued involvement is key to making sure we see all we need to see.

The first couple of rounds of Super League were pretty quiet, but as we get into the season, the offences and the fines are beginning to flow.

Disturbing reports from Hull (West) where one of last season's stand-out performers, Mark O'Meley, has been letting his awards success go to his head. He's been spotted in white boots and setting up tries with some fancy handiwork reminiscent of a cheeky half-back. Moreover, his actions are obviously catching and Sam Moa from the same chapter has also been practising his flock-passes. Leave it to that Gidley feller, Moa. Both fined a tenner and warned as to future conduct.

Reports from Castleford show that they've got a prop in trouble for putting boot to ball on the last. For once, it's not that Huby lad, but Paul Jackson. We like Jackson and accept his appeal against his fine as it was more a fault of organisation that left him with the ball and precious few options. A ticking off will suffice in this instance, but don't let it happen again.

Craig Kopczak (Bradford) bagged himself a hat-trick last weekend, but reviewing the footage showed that the combined yardage for all three did not exceed ten. In that case, he escapes a fine, but a letter has been sent to him outlining that he really ought not to do it again.

Down in France, Rémi Casty (Perpignan) has been fined after chasing down a cheeky half-back who was on a 70 metre break while outside of Super League, Brendan Worth (Toulouse) bagged his first try for the club after over two seasons with the club. That's the sort of hit rate we like and it's congratulations to the residents of the Minimes area of Toulouse who won't have to see him running round the field stark bollock naked again.

In the Challenge Cup last week, York ran in 132 unanswered points, but congratulations to Alex Benson and Keegan Hirst for not getting involved while everyone else waded in. That makes up somewhat for Benson pretending to be a loose forward on too many recent occasions.

Finally, papers have been lodged for Lee Radford (Hull West) and a temporary membership for Ian Kirke (Leeds) have been applied for. We don't see any worries in rubber-stamping them.

Thanks to everyone who has offered their spottings over the last few weeks. Keep us informed via the Chairman's Twitter. We need your input to make sure the standards are upheld.

Saturday, 19 February 2011

Hall of Fame

Now then.

An initiative we ought to have taken some time ago, we're looking at putting together a PFU Hall of Fame. To be nominated, a player must have upheld the values of this union and have been retired for a minimum of three years. We've got our own ideas, but we'd be happy to hear from you with your suggestions. Drop us a comment on here or twit the Chairman (is that the right terminology? Check this with the office junior before posting - cheers) and we'll start putting it together over the next few weeks and months.

Thanking you kindly.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Quiet opening to the season

Now then.

The season is well underway and one thing is clear. The Hon Secretary needs a new sat nav. It took us ages to get back from Wales and all because he didn't want to fork out for the Severn Bridge toll. But then I suppose that's why he was appointed to the position in the first place - tighter than a mermaid's brassiere.

Anyway, we're all back safe and have remarkably little to report from the Magic weekend. As it's early days, we'll just issue a general reminder to the membership that we're still looking at footwear and will be clamping down again, so get yer boot black out.

The major issue was the king-hit on Crusaders full-back Clinton Shift-cough-ski. Why was that left to the little hooker Wayne Godwin? The Salford shop steward Lee Jewitt has been summoned to the offices to explain.

Other than that, an investigation into two members from the North Wales chapter putting boot to ball, but generally well done. Keep it up.