Sport

Should fans get benefit from stars?

ON Wednesday, Queensland's State of Origin team visits Roma for a fan day and every player is likely to suffer some form of writer's cramp on the flight back to the Sunshine Coast that night.

More than 5000 people are expected to turn out to welcome the Maroons in what will be the biggest influx of visitors since the Broncos played in Roma in 1994 and, conservatively, each Queensland player will autograph a minimum of 100 items.

They will sign everything from football jerseys to scraps of paper, and do so in the spirit in which they are visiting the flood-ravaged town.

But, as is the case at similar events, a few gold diggers will produce a piece of memorabilia that will increase in value carrying the signature of Mal Meninga, Johnathan Thurston or Billy Slater. It is, sadly, the nature of today's greedy and opportunist society.

A few weeks ago, Bundaberg Rum released its Darren Lockyer No.6 bottle of rum, 'expertly crafted' the company said to signify Locky's service to the No.6 jersey.

They filled 37,200 bottles, each with a recommended retail price of $60.

Lockyer attended the launch and signed the first 200 bottles sold that day. Such was the expected attendance that Bundy asked customers - who were limited to one bottle each - to register online for positions in the autograph line.

Now, one of those bottles - No 10 - is on eBay at $6000 - a bountiful windfall for the original buyer. The bottle is signed and boxed, and would be a treasured collectable for some wealthy fan keen to grab a keepsake.

Another signed bottle is being offered at $1085, and an unsigned one at $135. Even a flyer from the launch was listed at $18.25 - a sure message that the former Broncos, Queensland and Australian skipper is still very much loved and admired.

The question begs to be asked, however - is this fair? Should opportunists be able to prostitute the signature of a sporting icon to this degree?

Doubtless Lockyer was paid handsomely to endorse the product, and his kids will treasure the No 6 bottle he was given. And without question Bundy will make a killing.

In my seven years at the Broncos, 'commercial' signature seekers - for want of a better description - became easy to spot.

They don't fool anyone, least of all the players. And there are ways and means of drafting the wheat from the chaff.
But these bloodsuckers ruin it for the genuine fan. They put the players on guard and impinge on their good nature and generosity.

Thankfully, I doubt many of these parasites will make it to Roma.

Topics:  nrl, rugby league, state of origin




More Telstra outages for the Southern Downs this week

The Telstra website shows Warwick's home phones, ADSL and NBN customers will be...

Is this the start of our Rural Renaissance?

Exports to the US have dropped 40%, China 30% and Japan 10%. China and Saudi Arabia have once more open their doors to Brazilian beef while Indonesia is now looking to Indian buffalo meat to boost its supplies

Rising prices the talk of the town as rain raises farmers’ spirits

Latest deals and offers

What's on the small screen this week

Bella Frizza in a scene from the TV series Married At First Sight.

THE Block's $65,000 bathroom is revealed and strangers marry.

MOVIE REVIEW: Life on the Road

Ricky Gervais, Ben Bailey Smith and Foregone Conclusion (Steve Clarke, Andy Burrows, Stuart Baxter Wilkinson, Michael Clarke) in a scene from David Brent: Life on the Road.

Ricky Gervais has brought David Brent back to life on the big screen

Jessica Alba wants tequila shots served at her funeral

Businesswoman and actor Jessica Alba

There won't be mourning at this funeral

Tom Hiddleston's Instagram account hacked

Actor Tom Hiddleston

Thor star the latest celebrity targetted by hackers

Charlize Theron's son dresses up as Frozen character

Actor Charlize Theron

Star's son spotted dressed a beloved Frozen character

BOOKS: Food for thought in Caroline Beecham's latest novel

Maggie's Kitchen by Caroline Beecham is published by Allen & Unwin, RRP $29.99.

New novel reminds readers that bravery exists in many forms

REVEALED: Pat Rafter's $18m Coast house on the market

Check out the photos of the Coast's most expensive property for sale

The "correction we had to have" in Gladstone's rentals

UPWARD MARCH: The rental vacancy rate in Gladstone has improved for the first time in more than a year, providing a confidence boost in the market.

Vacancy rates improve with signs that things are getting betterF

ISLAND FOR SALE: Cheap Fraser Coast island drops price again

Suna Island in the Great Sandy Strait will be auctioned by Ray White Hervey Bay on Saturday morning.

This is the cheapest island you will find for sale in Australia

How a family home can fit on a 250sq m block

This is what you can build on 250m2.

Here's the floor plan of a home built on 250sq m

$100m plan for Curtis Island 'world class' luxury resort

$100 million resort: Top views at Turtle Street at Curtis Island.

"At the moment we think it meets all the town planning approvals.”

Noosa mayor on "red alert" over planning court decision

Mayor Tony Wellington hands down his first budget.

Mayor upset at lack of say about look and feel of Noosa