Darius Boyd earned a momentous slice of Origin history on Wednesday night, equalling Greg Inglis as the greatest try-scorer in the concept’s 35 seasons with his 15th touchdown in his 20th straight appearance for Queensland. The ultra-consistent winger/fullback is an automatic selection in the Maroons and Kangaroos line-ups, while he is running into top form for Newcastle after a slow start to the year.
But in the public persona stakes, Boyd remains the most petulant jerk in the NRL. Renowned for being a prickly character by the media ever since his infamous 2009 interview while at St George Illawarra, Boyd has routinely enhanced that reputation with his curt responses – particularly when the cameras are around.
Boyd was typically huffy yesterday when quizzed by Channel 7 reporter Jennifer Huxley about his long-time coach and father figure Wayne Bennett’s departure from the Knights at the end of the season. At first giving the silent treatment, Boyd responded by repeatedly saying: “Can’t I enjoy a good Origin win?”
Players avoid answering uncomfortable questions on a daily basis, but the vast majority do it in a polite manner that doesn’t see them come across as a sulking child. Boyd needs to realise that he would be playing Rugby League purely for the love of the game if it wasn’t for the saturation media coverage, but at 27, he is unlikely to change his ways.
Meanwhile, Boyd would have to be considered a strong chance to follow Bennett for a fourth time, particularly given St George Illawarra (where Bennett is tipped to return) fullback gun Josh Dugan has made a successful transition to the centres. Bennett alluded to the fact Boyd has clauses in his Newcastle contract, presumably allowing him to leave if the coach did.
Here’s yesterday’s embarrassing display:
And for old time’s sake, here’s the interview that created a grouchy legend:
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