As suggested by Damian Barrett of Herald-Sun, who has worked with PL admittedly. However, he reckons Ricky O. is an ex-physio and current player manager, and the job should be done by an active sports physician or experienced AFL physio. What do you think?
No spark with Seven's coverage
13 April 2007 Herald-Sun
IF CHANNEL 7 was an AFL team, right now it would be Melbourne.
Need Improvement: Damian Barrett believes Channel Seven need to lift its footy coverage or otherwise the AFL may be forced to intervene.
Two terrible losses from two weekends of the new season. Under-performing senior players. Off-field staff in panic. Doom here. Gloom there.
Shambles best describes Seven's efforts to date in its return to football, and no amount of spin from the network can convince anyone otherwise.
The problems that have beset Seven have become problems for the AFL.
Take it as fact that if a call about this matter hasn't yet been made from the game's headquarters to the game's most traditional broadcaster, then it will be very soon.
Head commentator Bruce McAvaney is still accurate, still the most-researched caller, still regularly capable of accompanying a game high-point with beautiful commentary.
But . . . McAvaney seems to lack what he once exuded every time the cameras rolled for a big event -- an infectious bounce in his voice and tangible excitement in his body-language. In general, a spark.
Maybe his mind is carrying the very obvious problems associated with the network's match-day coverage.
Maybe he peaked for the Sydney Olympics and still pines for the years he missed calling the game.
Whatever, something's not quite right with one of Australian sports broadcasting's greats -- maybe greatest.
But it's not too late. It's only Round 3. You would almost predict McAvaney will return to his best.
Dennis Cometti, like McAvaney, is largely the same standout caller he has been for the past 15 years.
The Cometti-isms are still there, but there's little or no chemistry with McAvaney.
Again, it's not too late.
For David Schwarz, though, well, what's happening there?
He clearly suffers coming in to this prestigious role after Friday night footy viewers had five years of Garry Lyon and Dermott Brereton, and whether you like or dislike either of that duo, every time they spoke the viewer became more knowledgeable about the game.
Schwarz talks in cliches, states the obvious, tells us nothing we don't already know.
Simply, he just doesn't work as a special-comments man on prime-time TV.
Tim Watson is more difficult to assess. His views on the game remain essential listening, but because of Seven's demands that he spend half a game in the main commentary box and half on the boundary, he has been cast as an awkward-looking bit player.
Then there's the boundary rider, Rick Olarenshaw. He would be a future TV talent if he devoted himself to the craft, but he can't because he manages footballers.
He even interviewed one of them post-match last week, Brisbane Lion Michael Rischitelli.
The boundary-riding role, though, really needs to be filled by a sports medicine expert.
Seven barely acknowledged Brock McLean's ankle problem in Round 1.
OK, the solution to the Seven mess? Easy. Get Wayne Carey to break his contract with Channel 9, install him as the special-comments man, give him licence to assert his swagger over the entire coverage.
If that doesn't re-excite McAvaney, nothing will.
Treat Friday night footy as Nine did - as a moving news story with many angles to cover.
Get a reporter into the losing team's rooms. Ditch the long-range camera.
Most importantly, give us a reason to get excited about turning on the TV every Friday night.
And do it before the AFL forces you to.
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