It’s been described as footy’s worst interview. Dragons fullback Darius Boyd managed just 28 words in response to eight questions during a press conference to promote this Friday night’s clash against his old club the Brisbane Broncos. It’s saying something that his notoriously monosyllabic coach Wayne Bennett felt the need to chip him about it.

But since when, particularly footy players, given good interview? Most of them impart about the same amount of information as Boyd managed it just takes longer to get through all the clichés. He needs some intensive media training so that next time his reponses are more like the sort of stuff we expect from the great minds of our sporting elites.

With a little more training, next time it might go something more like this:

Q: Up against the Broncos, excited about facing your old mates?

A: Yeah can’t wait. Even though it’s not like any other game I’m going to treat it like it is because you can only play this game one game at a time. Sure, I’ll be pounding into blokes that I once stood shoulder to shoulder with but it’s just another game. Only the opposition is different from last week. What I’m really looking forward to is just getting out there and giving 110 per cent.

Q: Did you watch them play last week?

A: No I didn’t. I’m not focussed on their game, I’m only focussed on my game. I need to play my game not their game otherwise I won’t know which way to run. And I need to play it at 110 per cent.

Q: What’s the strategy going into the game?

A: We’ll decide that on Wednesday I suppose. But I think our main aim is going to be to score lots of points. Heaps of them but in particular heaps more than the other team. It’s a strategy that’s worked for us in the past but you know as well as I do in this sport you can only take it one game at time. Each game is different, although I did say before that I was going to treat this game like any other game. Whatever, our strategy is to give 110 per cent which is more than the 100 per cent the Broncos will probably give.

Q: Happy to score another try, it was a good one?

A: Yeah, it was good, eh. But getting over the line is a team effort. There’s no I in team. There’s an e and a, obviously a t and an m, but I’m pretty confident there’s no i. Right? 

Q: Second one of the season, it’s taken a while, you must be keen to be coming into form at the right time of the season.

A: No it was good. I’m just trying to be the best that I can which is pretty bloody good I must say. I should have scored more tries this season but my team mates have let me down on occasion. If they tried a bit harder they could make me look even better than I actually am. 

Q: What are your thoughts on the way your team is going at the moment Darius?

A: Um yeah it was pretty good eh. Well it’s the business end of the season so we really need to dig deep and give 110 per cent. At least. And if the other teams give 110 per cent then we’ve got to give more, maybe 120 per cent, 150 per cent. We’ve just got to give more per cent than the other team. But the most important thing is we take it one game at a time. The finals are a whole new ball game except the rules will most likely stay the same. But we’re not thinking about the finals. We’ve got to get there first and the only way we can do that is by leaving it all out on the field and doing that one game at a time.

Q: Are you fair dinkum?

A: Yeah. I’m 110 per cent fair dinkum.

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    • iansand says:

      07:25am | 20/08/09

      That was a brilliant interview.  If all football players adopted that strategy we could get back to watching the game, which is the important bit, and not feeding the chooks.

      Football players rarely have enough neurones to form a synapse.  Why should we expect anything different?

    • Matt H says:

      07:42am | 20/08/09

      I was as sick as a parrot watching that.

    • Jimbo says:

      08:03am | 20/08/09

      I don’t think you’re giving Darius enough credit. He obviously sensed there was little point in elaborating on his answers. As you’ve just proved, he would only have fallen into well worn cliches.

    • ANDIKA says:

      09:04am | 20/08/09

      Why didn’t the Dragon’s have Wendell do the interview?
      He would have given them and us a show!

    • RT says:

      09:21am | 20/08/09

      I can’t see much wrong with Boyd’s answers. He could have said ‘yeah-no’ and ‘mate’  a lot,  is all.

    • Shane Kerr says:

      09:27am | 20/08/09

      Wow! A not too bright footballer. Who woulda thunk it?
      < /sarcasm >

    • Tim of Raiders Town says:

      09:28am | 20/08/09

      First of all,
      The journalists should go back to school.
      Since when was it a football player’s job to write an article for a lazy journalist. Boyd’s answers were clear and concise, and addressed directly the stupid questions asked at him.
      the Dragons obviously stuffed up by making Boyd front the media as he is still dirty at the treatment he received over the toilet incident last year and the way certain reporters have been treating the Dragons this year.

    • Bill Steamshovel says:

      09:43am | 20/08/09

      Best interview evah!

      I think all footballers should give interviews like that until those idiot journalists realise that the game doesn’t owe them a living. If they put more effort into their interview techniques and didn’t take every opportunity to put shit on footy players, I think the players would be more inclined to make their life easier.

    • Jake Zanoni says:

      09:55am | 20/08/09

      That was without a doubt the greatest thing any footballer has ever done in an interview.  I’m so sick of them spouting off the exact same PR media training fluff.

      Darius Boyd is my new hero

    • Kel says:

      09:59am | 20/08/09

      Bill - without media exposure from journalists, the game will suffer, you fool. If all the media attention went towards another sport tomorrow, you would see ratings, crowds, and more importantly for league - sponsorship dollars - decline rapidly.
      Without these things precious little babies like Darius wouldn’t get their fat paychecks. The interview was a disgrace, and anyone with a brain who wants league to survive, should be hoping it never happens again.
      Unfotunately after Boyd’s toliet incident last year - it seems his only real care is for himself, certainly not the game!

    • Mr Pastry says:

      10:05am | 20/08/09

      Journo’s hang around sports people to feel good about themselves.  Smug in their intellectual superiority over sporting celebrity,  much in the same way the press hang around politicians.  They sure as hell don’t hang around scientists and engineers - they would become confused or heaven forbid, learn something.  Instead a parade of tired old cliches and directly copied press releases is our daily news.  I do wish one journo at least would challenge the concept of 110%, maybe the rugby players have found out how to tap into anti-matter.

    • Gibbot says:

      10:33am | 20/08/09

      “But since when, particularly footy players, given good interview? Most of them impart about the same amount of information as Boyd managed it just takes longer to get through all the clichés.”

      If you’re going to knock a footballer for being inarticulate it might be a good idea to ensure you can construct a coherent setence yourself, Naomi. After all, this guy is paid for posessing motor skills. You’re paid to write.

    • Tommy Tomato says:

      10:45am | 20/08/09

      Yeah mate, yeah,
      I seen Darius and the boys train the house down on Wensdee night and while he come up with a couple a silly mistakes during the interview, he done good in the training session. Yeah nah, they talked about that during the week and Dazza done a bit of growing up since then, eh? Yeah nah, it was good. They’ll just be stoked to come away with the two points on Satdee.

    • Bob Higgins says:

      11:02am | 20/08/09

      Yeh pastry 110% annoys the stuffing out of me to, but asking rugby players to be eloquent and media savvy is stupid. 
      Even stupider though is to listen.

    • John says:

      11:39am | 20/08/09

      Can we please abandon this “110%” stuff?  There is no way anyone can put in more than they have.  It has as much validity as a politician’s spin.  If a player gives it everything they have got, that is 100%.

    • Craig Burden says:

      12:01pm | 20/08/09

      The media interviews that are conducted in all sports are totalling boring. At least this guy was honest and did not revert to the same old PR crap.
      Good on him, I say.
      If we had more interviews like this one, we would get much less media crap with the focus on where it should be - the game itself.

    • Bill Steamshovel says:

      12:02pm | 20/08/09

      Kel, which sport would the journos focus their highly polished interviewing techniques that Darius so adroitly sidestepped if all footballers gave interviews like that? Cricket? Netball? And what would happen when these sportsmen and women, after constantly being shafted by the media, decide to go all Darius Boyd on them?

      If all the sponsorship dollars dried up, the game wouldn’t die, Darius and blokes like him would still be able to go out and play in their local leagues on the weekend, while working as tradies or labourers and would probably be quite content to have media spotlight taken off them. Contrast that with how journos would struggle if they had to get a real job. 

      You’ve said that anyone with a brain who wants league to survive, should be hoping it never happens again. Considering that these journos are just another in a long line of people with a vested interest in seeing the game survive in it’s current form, you would think they would be at the top of the list of wanting to make sure an interview like that doesn’t happen again and that the first thing they could do would be looking at what steps they could take to improve the quality of interviews. But instead of taking a moment of introspection and trying to lift their game, they’ve thrown the rattle out of the pram.

      Like I said earlier, what these idiot journos have to figure out is that the game doesn’t owe them a living. It’s a symbiotic relationship, but the journos are failing to live up to their side. They are acting like parasites. If they want interesting answers, how about they ask some interesting questions? If they want better interactions with players, perhaps they could work on improving their relationships with players and clubs. If they want the game to grow, maybe they could stop raping it and dragging players over the coals for the slightest indiscretion?

      But that would require some introspection, self reflection and logic. It’s much easier for journos to go having an overinflated sense of self importance and continue with their sneering disdain and contempt for the very subjects that provide them with a livelihood.

    • BJ says:

      12:07pm | 20/08/09

      Rugby League and AFL players should be selectively interviewed as some cannot speak properly. Good example is Justin Hodges from the Broncos, QLD and Australia is a disgrace. Why not educate these guys than train more and more and more.

      ‘Tis better to say nothing and be thought a fool, than to open your mouth and remove all doubt. -Abraham Lincoln

    • FJ says:

      12:25pm | 20/08/09

      All should be like that. Those same media idiots have been bagging players out all season and deserve to be treated with disdain.

    • Ned says:

      12:59pm | 20/08/09

      There’ve been a lot of silly comments so far, showing people do not understand how the media works or how a corporation like a football club should be doing business.

      Journalists ask questions to elict an answer that’s usebable as either a quote in a newspaper story or as a grab in a radio or TV report. It’s not the question that’s important, it’s the answer. If anyone has ever looked at the raw, unedited tape of just about any news conference - sporting or otherwise -  they will have heard many seemingly inarticulate questions asked. They are not important - it’s the answer that matters. The exception is when the interview is live. If you pay attention, you will notice that in live interviews, questions tend to be far more coherent and sensible (well, mostly anyway).

      Football clubs playing at this level are corporations. Just like any other company, they should only allow spokespeople who are competent to speak on their behalf.

      St. George failed in this duty by allowing a player unskilled in interview techniques to appear before the media. Maybe there are some players who, after training, will never be skilled enough. In that case, don’t let them speak. However, if Boyd is actually skilled in dealing with the media, but chose to be deliberately stupid, then he needs a kick up the jacksey.

      No company lets its employees speak willy-nilly to the media. Football clubs should be no different. Those running the St. George club have let down the club and, possibly, Boyd.

    • pete m says:

      01:08pm | 20/08/09

      Billy Slater is excellent with media interviews.  Ban the rest of them.  And lol at Benny stepping in - he’s given a few interviews with less aplomb and far more arrogance.

    • RB says:

      01:09pm | 20/08/09

      Give it a rest, just have a laugh about the whole thing.

      I did.

    • Susan says:

      01:55pm | 20/08/09

      I thought it was hilarious.

      Also amusing are people talking about the footy “journos” who interview these guys after the game asking “questions”. This interview had an unusually high number of questions (hit rate 5/7); more commonly the commentator makes a statement and then thrusts the microphone under the players face (e.g. “Q: Second one of the season, it’s taken a while, you must be keen to be coming into form at the right time of the season.”). Seriously, how else should a player respond to the statement “Scored another try this week, it was a good one”? They didn’t ask him anything!

      When the journalists/commentators/talking heads conducting these interviews learn how to construct a question, then and only then may they begin to criticise the manner in which the players answer them.

    • james says:

      02:36pm | 20/08/09

      I Cringed, but that’s what made it all the much better.

      And if you wanting a way to deal with stupid reporters i give you former manchester united/scotland soccer player and coach gordan strachan.

    • Darren says:

      02:45pm | 20/08/09

      loved Dell on the Today Show this morning - he is going to teach this bloke how to work the camera!

    • Bill Steamshovel says:

      03:23pm | 20/08/09

      That’s quite an arrogant assumption, Ned. Just because you don’t agree with some comments doesn’t mean people do not understand how the media works. I’d venture that people know all too well how the media works, which is why people are congratulating Darius for showing them up.

      Your comment operates from the assumption that football clubs should kowtow to the media, but you haven’t presented any evidence why this should be the case.

      Also, your defence of lazy journalism is quite simply astounding. If the questions don’t matter, why are they even asked at all? According to your logic, people should just hold press conferences, say whatever they want and then bugger off. How is that any different to releasing a statement or a press release? The difference between a good interviewer and poor interviewer is that a good interviewer ask questions that elicit interesting answers. Darius has shown quite clearly which category these journos fall into.

      The funny thing about this is you’ve state no company lets its employees speak willy-nilly to the media. Given that you know this fact, how have you failed to see this interview for what it was? Let me spell it out for you: The club have provided a player with the oppportunity to show his contempt and disdain for the media. By providing Darius with this opportunity, the club has also demonstrated theirs as well.

    • Dave says:

      04:20pm | 20/08/09

      he got questions like…... are you happy you scored a try.

    • Mick Hogan says:

      04:37pm | 20/08/09

      I don’t blame him.
      That is 40 more seconds than i would give the same trash that would eat him in a millisecond. I don’t know one person in history that is any smarter after talking to a “reporter”.

    • Kim says:

      10:40pm | 20/08/09

      at the end of the day, you’ve gotta take it one interview at a time; you are only as good as your last interview; winning interview form is good interview form

    • Davo from St Kilda says:

      10:41pm | 20/08/09

      Ha ha, this is so typical of thugby players. Nothing but air between the ears. It’s no wonder rugby is losing support and is in danger of being overtaken by soccer as the nation’s second most popular sport.

    • Salad today says:

      10:55pm | 20/08/09

      Only 110% - AFL players are currently giving 120

    • Jack McCracken says:

      11:49pm | 20/08/09

      Hmmm, there’s an interesting line in the AAP story on the press conference that I think sheds a lot of light on what went on:

      >It is believed Bennett apologised to some reporters for that incident, taking >responsibility for their behaviour as he had asked the players not to say >too much.
      >Unfortunately, he later explained, the players thought he meant say >nothing at all.

      If that’s true, you can kind of understand how it happens - Bennett tells Boyd not to say anything to give the opposition any ammunition, Boyd’s worried about defying coach’s orders and probably not too keen to be there, so decides he’ll take a minimalist approach. Hence the 28-word waste of time.

    • Ned says:

      12:22pm | 21/08/09

      Bill Steamshovel: Thanks for proving my point.

    • jsm says:

      08:56pm | 21/08/09

      It shows the stupidity of the journos, not the player.

    • Bill Steamshovel says:

      09:57am | 22/08/09

      Quality stuff, Ned! What’s next? I know you are but what am I?

    • Mr Pastry says:

      07:47pm | 22/08/09

      Ned and Bill - settle down


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