Are you sick of the Sydney-centric coverage of the great game of rugby league? Are you tired of having to pretend that “foundation clubs” or a “derby” played in front of 15 people or St George’s 11-in-a-row of “national” titles in a ten team comp of all white players in one city have any meaning to you at all? Why are we expected to pander to people who simply do not get Origin? The commentators won’t even leave the studio!

If you answered yes to any of the above, this newsletter is for you.

Queensland now has four NRL clubs, including three with NRLW licences. We have glorious competitions for men, women and juniors that span our wide state and includes a team from Papua New Guinea, which Queensland tried to annex in 1883. Far from being mired in nostalgia, rugby league districts around the state obliterated their heritage to build something bigger and better where only the fittest can survive. Our 2020 State of Origin side was the worst team ever and still won, just like they did in 1995 and in 1960 and in 1925.

We deserve coverage of rugby league that reflects our place in the game.

This is not a place for mindless cheerleading or uncritical blather. It is a place to recognise that Queensland rugby league has its own culture and history and a substantial enough place in the sport to merit dedicated coverage without New South Wales inserting itself in the way.

Thank you for reading.

About the author

Hello. You may remember me from:

This is my new project. Pythago NRL has more or less run its course and while I plan to still post some more general analysis there occassionally, I want to put the focus on and into something that feels new and exciting.

Also, Twitter is dead to me, Wordpress’ interface is utter garbage that I’m sick of dealing with and Substack solves both of these problems, so welcome aboard.


Starting 2024, the in-season schedule of content is:

  • THE WEEKLY comes on Monday, with news from around the state and informed editorial opinions

  • STATS DROP comes on Tuesday, featuring numerical trivia, detailed statistics and analytics to make you a smarter fan

  • QUICK WRAP of a statewide game comes on Wednesday, analysing and scouting those in the second tier

  • PREVIEW comes on Thursday, a look ahead to the games for the Queensland NRL clubs and the statewide comps

  • There will usually be at least one NRL match report, which will either be a Quick Wrap, featuring fast impressions and stats from the game, or a longer form piece if I happen to be at the game.

Subscribe to The Maroon Observer

An independent newsletter about rugby league in Queensland


Liam Callaghan

Rugby league writer. Go Maroons/Broncos/Magpies (or Devils, if Souths Logan are going bad).