live Infotainment Factory: Secret Ferguson chat that blew Johns away

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Friday, 30 August 2019

Secret Ferguson chat that blew Johns away


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NSW Blues winger Blake Ferguson will line up for the Parramatta Eels on Friday night against Brisbane Broncos after weeks out on the sideline.

The return of arguably the season's most potent signing will be a welcome injection of firepower as Brad Arthur's men challenge for a top four finish ahead of finals footy.

It was the 29-year-old's unique brand of metre-eating footy that kickstarted the Eels' stunning turnaround mission, clawing their way from last season's wooden spoon to premiership contenders with two games remaining in the regular season.

Countless line-breaks, full field tries and one-man sprint shows had pundits singing the 2018 premiership winger's praises as he earned himself a long awaited return to representative footy under Blues coach Brad Fittler.

Blake Ferguson stars for the Eels

But it's the often-unseen workhorse behaviours, highlighted by a covert chat with Brad Fittler ahead of Origin II this year about pitching-in in the front line, that makes Ferguson one of the most dangerous players to play the game, says rugby league Immortal Andrew Johns.

"He's their main go forward man," Johns told Wide World of Sports' Immortal Behaviour. "He's an extra front rower.

"I thought in Origin two and three he was just out of this world. His metres he made.

"He actually went to Brad Fittler and said off the kick-off, instead of being on the wing where he normally stands he went under the sticks off the kickoffs so he could get play two.

"And even off those play twos at the start of the game, he was poking his nose through, playing the ball quick.

Blake Ferguson stars for the Eels

"It's such an advantage to have those sort of players. A great go-forward man. Silly as a wheel, [and it's] great to see him back."

Ferguson had been out of action since July when he was hospitalised due to a knee infection with complications stemming from an allergic reaction to antibiotics.

At the time, the club's medical staff were unable to put a timeline on the marquee signing's return which sent alarm bells ringing through the corridors at Bankwest Stadium.

Just consider his numbers: An average of 165 running-metres, eight tries and four assists from only 15 appearances boasted an almost unrivalled attacking prowess.

In his stead, fellow winger and teammate Maika Sivo stood strong, turning heads with his devastating physicality and success at the corner post, while Brad Takairangi held down Ferguson's post on the right flank.

The reunion of two of the game's most threatening wingers in time for finals footy should stand as an ominous warning for the league's heavyweights, with the Broncos first off the rank to experience an Eels outfit in full-flight.

NSW Blues winger Blake Ferguson will line up for the Parramatta Eels on Friday night against Brisbane Broncos after weeks out on the sideline.

The return of arguably the season's most potent signing will be a welcome injection of firepower as Brad Arthur's men challenge for a top four finish ahead of finals footy.

It was the 29-year-old's unique brand of metre-eating footy that kickstarted the Eels' stunning turnaround mission, clawing their way from last season's wooden spoon to premiership contenders with two games remaining in the regular season.

Countless line-breaks, full field tries and one-man sprint shows had pundits singing the 2018 premiership winger's praises as he earned himself a long awaited return to representative footy under Blues coach Brad Fittler.

Blake Ferguson stars for the Eels

But it's the often-unseen workhorse behaviours, highlighted by a covert chat with Brad Fittler ahead of Origin II this year about pitching-in in the front line, that makes Ferguson one of the most dangerous players to play the game, says rugby league Immortal Andrew Johns.

"He's their main go forward man," Johns told Wide World of Sports' Immortal Behaviour. "He's an extra front rower.

"I thought in Origin two and three he was just out of this world. His metres he made.

"He actually went to Brad Fittler and said off the kick-off, instead of being on the wing where he normally stands he went under the sticks off the kickoffs so he could get play two.

"And even off those play twos at the start of the game, he was poking his nose through, playing the ball quick.

Blake Ferguson stars for the Eels

"It's such an advantage to have those sort of players. A great go-forward man. Silly as a wheel, [and it's] great to see him back."

Ferguson had been out of action since July when he was hospitalised due to a knee infection with complications stemming from an allergic reaction to antibiotics.

At the time, the club's medical staff were unable to put a timeline on the marquee signing's return which sent alarm bells ringing through the corridors at Bankwest Stadium.

Just consider his numbers: An average of 165 running-metres, eight tries and four assists from only 15 appearances boasted an almost unrivalled attacking prowess.

In his stead, fellow winger and teammate Maika Sivo stood strong, turning heads with his devastating physicality and success at the corner post, while Brad Takairangi held down Ferguson's post on the right flank.

The reunion of two of the game's most threatening wingers in time for finals footy should stand as an ominous warning for the league's heavyweights, with the Broncos first off the rank to experience an Eels outfit in full-flight.

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