Another powerful week for the JoiningJack campaign with the
number of Twitter followers going through the roof and with the
announcement of some big events. Many of you keep asking me what
the Warriors will be doing for the cause, all I can tell you at
this stage is that we will be announcing something soon that will
be massive for the charity. Watch this space!
It was great to see that Kirk and Tyrone out of Coronation
Street have pledged their support to the charity by saying that all
the proceeds from their annual golf day will go towards Jacks fund.
The support is coming in from everywhere and when such high profile
people getting involved, it really gives us all a boost. It was a
very strange experience I have to say being sat in AJ's living room
with Tyrone discussing the day, he was an absolute gentleman. Alan,
his real name, spent over two hours with his wife Lucy-Jo Hudson of
Wild at heart fame, (who incidentally is one of the kindest and
most genuine people that I've ever met) discussing his various
ideas for the charity and was genuinely interested and concerned.
More details of the event will be announced soon but it will take
place on the 31st of August at the Worsley Marriot golf club, just
outside of Manchester. The JoiningJack salute has taken the country
by storm and friends, children and celebrities all have made
outstanding efforts to raise awareness of the charity. We can't
thank you enough guys. The fact that we are always on your mind
gives us strength.
You may have noticed that I had a guest with me at Headingley on
Friday night for our game against the Leeds Rhinos. Rio Ferdinand
has been an admirer of Rugby League for a few years and after some
Twitter conversation with Sammy T, he decided to come along to our
game. I have met Rio a few times over the past few years and he has
always been very complimentary of Rugby League.
With all that has been going this week in the media with his
non-selection for the European football Championships, the fact
that he took time to come to our game was a massive PR coup for the
sport. A lot is written about footballers and the wages they are on
and the ego's they carry but Rio displayed none of these
characteristics. He stopped and signed autographs for every fan and
posed for every photo request. I spent over two hours with him
before the game and during and he spoke with great intelligence and
understanding of our sport. He asked questions about our
preparation and different tactics and ploys. For a player to ask
questions like he did, to see what he could carry over into his
sport, says why he has been so successful. He is always looking to
seek improvement in different areas. Even with such an impressive
CV, he wants to get better.
It was also a good opportunity for me to ask my own questions.
You don't get the chance to speak to one of the most recognisable
footballers on the planet everyday. I asked him what motivates him.
When you get paid the types of money that these guys get and the
fact that they want for nothing, it must take something to get them
out of bed. Rio told me that it was winning, he is addicted to it.
He spoke to me about the heartbreak of the last game of the season
when the Premiership was snatched from United's grasp by their
closest rivals. The fear of this feeling will drive him and his
team mates next season. If Sir Alex wanted to motivate his players,
he just needs to show them the last five minutes of the 2012
Premier League season, they will not want to experience anything
like that again.
Throughout the game he was amazed at how tough the players were.
He kept shouting
"bodies are not designed to do that to each other"…. he was in to
the game big time. He kept saying that Sam was a 'joke', referring
to his ability to break down defences at will. He understood just
how good Brett Finch was and also praised Michael Mcilorrum,
proving that he does know his stuff as internally, we at the club
think he has been sensational this season.
After the game I invited him into the changing room. He sat
there and listened with intrigue as Coach Shaun Wane delivered his
post match debrief and then joined in the celebrations when the
players sung their team song. We have a very strong spirit in the
team and the guys love each others company but this occasion was
intensified with the fact that we were underdogs for the game and
were expected to lose due to us missing many key individuals. Rio
saw a very special changing room and he loved it. He was amazed at
the physical specimens on display and the team spirit blew him
away, he said that it inspired him.
The boys didn't miss the chance to have their photos taken with
him and he gladly obliged. We made him feel very welcome and
I am convinced he will be back. He might have more money than sense
but we provided him with an experience that he will never forget.
Our boys don't meet celebs everyday but they must realise that they
too are pretty big in the sporting world. They have Rio's respect,
thats for sure and he certainly has ours. Mr Hodgson must have a
team of champions at his disposal to overlook Rio. Not once did he
bad mouth the 'gaffers' decision and he will be supporting his team
mates even though he is not there with them, to me the sign of a
true leader. If he fancies a game over the football off-season, I
am sure I can persuade Waney to give him five minutes on the wing.
He would provide a great option to gather a cross-field
I sat in front of the TV on Monday night very proud to be British
as the Queens Jubilee concert was on TV. We are a brilliantly weird
nation. The economic climate may well be dull, the price of fuel
high, the weather unpredictable at best yet we spend a fortune on
Union Jacks and silly waist coats. We are unafraid to dance
stupidly in front of others and in front of millions world wide. We
risk illness as we camp out all night in a street waiting for a
glimpse of our Monarch and only us Brits can make a 91 year old man
stand on a boat in the rain for hours. There is one thing that we
do better than any other nation, we know how to throw a right good
knees up!!!! Yes of course Cliff was out of tune and his teeth
didn't fit and Grace Jones would scare the living daylights out of
any man and Will.i.am thought it was the Queens birthday BUT Kylie
proved she is still the Queen of pop and made my knees go weak and
Gary Barlow has to be the coolest man on the planet and nobody can
belt out a song like Sir Tom Jones and, as for Cheryl…… give me a
jug of water and you wouldn't see me for a month !!!! Yep i am a
very proud Englishmon.
In life, you can't be afraid to fail. Every failure is a lesson.
If life was easy then we would take things for granted. The world
in which we live in would not be the same if the people who are in
the video below gave up after they first failed. The failures gave
them strength and drove them to greater heights. I am sure that Rio
will go on to prove people wrong in their recent decisions. I
received a text from the great Ellery Hanley once, it read, 'the
greatest achievement in life is proving people wrong"…. DON'T BE
AFRAID TO FAIL.
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