It won’t be long until all the winter codes are in full swing, giving me a choice of reporting on a variety of the main sports such as rugby league, soccer, rugby union and Australian football.
But alas, it’s the season of cliches as far as coaches are concerned.
There must be a style book available, to help them spout some of their well known words of wisdom.
I think the most often used cliche is ‘‘it was a tale of two halves’’ - true, and the coach was correct - except it was the opposition in the first half and the opposition in the second half.
Using that cliche is about as logical as calling a boxing ring a boxing ring when its square.
I would be considerably richer if I had a dollar for every time I’ve heard that classic reply from a coach talking about his ‘‘forwards laying the foundations’’ for the team’s victory, which is often used for a ‘‘building block’’ for the rest of the season.
For some strange reason it conjours up an image in my mind of brickie’s labourers working away on a building site wearing Souths jerseys - and don’t ask why Souths as I have no idea.
When a coach is pondering on his team’s loss, puzzled by the poor performance, he often tells me that ‘‘on paper we were the better team’’.
Eureka; I tell him I know the basic reason for the team’s demise - unfortunately your mob were playing on grass.
Soccer coaches are often animated during a post-match interview when the rub of the green has not gone their team’s way.
I’ve even been confronted with ‘‘that was never a penalty’’.
It must come as quite a surprise when I tell them I beg to differ - I heard the ref blow his whistle, point to the penalty spot and witnessed the opponent slotting the ball in the goal net.
Goalkeepers are the whipping boys for coaches who have just saw their team lose 9-0 but they’re often hesitant to fully lay blame on the keeper, instead choosing to say ‘‘his speed is deceptive, he’s slower than he looks’’.
Is this the same bloke that felt so dejected after picking the ball from the back of the net that he sustained a back injury and after the game, he felt so bad that he tried to dive in front of a bus but it slipped underneath him?
I suppose as a journo, English is supposed to be my strength and I was average at best at maths, but I must admit I do feel lacking in the numbers department when coaches tell me their players ‘‘gave 110 per cent’’.
That’s still something I try to nut out, especially when they were on the losing team.
And while those particular players are giving 110 per cent, they’ve often ‘‘dug deep’’, according to some coaches.
There we are back at the brickie’s labourers image with those Souths blokes with their shovels!
In the sporting arena on a local level there is often a great comeback involved when a team is losing by a wide margin, yet manages to ‘‘turn the tide’’, according to their elated coach at the end of the game.
Is this the same bloke I hear you ask that thought his team were playing on paper but is now suggesting a tsunami had played its part in the resurgence of form?
Often in this situation it takes ‘‘a team of warriors’’ to come back from the brink and reverse the scoreline.
Suddenly when I hear this I’m looking over my shoulder expecting Mel Gibson to come chasing out of the heather with a band of shrieking Scotsmen decked in the tartan with their faces painted blue and white.
Once I asked a rugby league coach where it all went wrong when his team was on the wrong end of a 62-0 hiding.
His reply, ‘‘statistics can be misleading’’ - really - surely not that misleading?
And his team ‘‘can still hold their heads high’’ - again, really? - I’d be hanging my head in shame looking for one of those holes that players have ‘‘dug deep’’ to swallow me up to hide my embarrassment.
But you know what? Although the team were slaughtered, the coach knows it had ‘‘been a great ride’’ while it lasted - yeah you’re right - maybe he was in Dreamworld!
The biggie I don’t want to hear this season is that it was ‘‘a bitter pill to swallow’’ just after being beaten.
C’mon fellas don’t go down that path; I don’t want those words uttered considering what we’ve been subjected to before the start of the NRL season - think the Sharks.