‘An unforgiving beast’: Titans brutally punt local legend Ryan James as Pangai Junior takes the weakest option to get out of Brisbane

August 11, 2020 0 By The81stMinute

BY CURTIS WOODWARD

@woodward_curtis

Rugby league is an unforgiving beast. Of the endless line of players that never make it to the big time of the National Rugby League, a special few get through.

Not long ago your writer put together a piece about the plight of the Gold Coast Titans and the Sydney Roosters. Two teams that couldn’t be more far apart.

At one end, the Titans were paying ridiculous overs to get young David Fifita to the club.

On the other, the glamorous Roosters were sliding the mighty Sonny Bill Williams into their squad for the final few games of the season.

But for herein lies another tale.

In 1991, a boy was born on the Tweed. His name was Ryan James. A local junior who climbed through the ranks. One of those kids that was always going to make it. Big, rough and skillful.

He represented NSW Under 15’s months before the new Gold Coast franchise were to enter the NRL. By 2008, James had won the Peter Sterling Medal and steered Palm Beach Currumbin High School to the schoolboy championship.

James was an Indigenous All Star by 2011.

This guy is as Gold Coast as you get and given his guts to the Titans for a decade.

Yeah he’s had a few injuries but if anyone should have been given the benefit of the doubt by the club – it was Ryan James. The captain of the Titans.

Given another chance after all the blood he’d given them.

Instead, he’s been tapped on the shoulder and off to Canberra.

Brutal.

One of the unluckiest blokes to never play State of Origin.

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As James prepares to move out of the Gold Coast for the first time in his life at 29, another from the other side of the border has played all the right cards to get out of his contract.

Courier-Mail journalists reported on Tuesday night that Tevita Pangai Junior would be punted by the Brisbane Broncos for breaching COVID-19 protocols.

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Basically, he wanted out of the Broncos.

Some say he knew he what he was getting into when he attended a tattoo shop opening after Brisbane’s loss to South Sydney at the weekend.

All after he admitted to calling the Sydney Roosters.

Pangai Junior is trouble.

He’s too big for his own boots.

Johnathan Thurston called TPJ ‘selfish’ on the Wide World of Sports’ JT’s Roast and Toast.

“After already knowing what Wayne Bennett and Paul Vaughan had done and the punishments that had been handed down to them, he decides to go to the opening of a barber shop and gets caught-out putting not only himself at risk but the Broncos and the game at risk.”

How easy it is to get out of a contract.

Then you look at Ryan James and everything he has given to the Titans.

Nobody said rugby league was fair.

It just sucks when you have someone that loves a club like James and does everything he can to stay and then someone like Pangai Junior… who can take such a weak option and get what he wants.

@woodward_curtis

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