Anastas accuses Pinocchio Gas of lying

Brath Anasta rips off his former Origin coach Phil Gold, accusing him of lying about Trent Barrett’s untimely departure as Canterbury coach.

Anasta noticed the Bulldogs general manager for his comments two weeks ago when he said Barrett would be coach “long after I leave”.

Barrett resigned Sunday night with Gold in front of the media on Monday that the coach had decided on his own terms. He claimed a fortnight ago that speculation surrounding Barrett’s tenure was driven by media outlets with childish agendas against him.

“Okay, you’re not smiling now after saying Phil just a few weeks ago,” Anasta told NRL 360.

“Pinocchio said his job was safe, Phil Gold, and he would be here long after Gus. He’s lying because Barrett is gone and he’s still there.

A member of the 2004 Grand Final winning Bulldogs team, who played 110 matches in blue and white, Anastasia said the club’s tough DNA was no longer part of the club’s fabric.

Gold hinted at 100% footy on Monday night that an interim coach would be hired for a long-term replacement with an experienced mentor to oversee the team for the rest of the year.

Assistant coach David Ferner and NSW Cup coach Mick Potter are the only two current staff members who have NRL experience.

Cobbo in Maroons’ sights

Maroons assistant Cameron Smith says he and coach Billy Slater have been strongly influenced by young gunman Selwyn Kobo in the Broncos because they want to create their 24-member squad for Origin Eye.

After making seven attempts in the last four games for the Broncos, Queensland has been in controversy over whether to use Valentine Holmes in the center as well as Dan Gaggai to spot the wing.

Storm star Xavier Coates could be on one wing for Queensland while cowboy speedster Hamiso Tabui-Fido is also in the mix for a wider space.

“Billy is the boss, you never give instructions, they come down,” Smith said on SEN radio. “I recently had a chat to compare notes with Billy and Kobo must have been on the radar.

“You can’t ignore the form he’s in at the moment and the things he can bring to football.”

Nelson Asofa-Solomona.  (Photo by Kelly Defina / Getty Images)

Nelson Asofa-Solomona. (Photo by Kelly Defina / Getty Images)

Storm NAS dealt blows

The depth of the Melbourne forward will be further tested with Nelson Asofa-Salomona wide prop, rejected from Saturday’s game against the North Queensland Cowboys.

Asofa-Salomona left the changing room after losing to Penrith 32-6 in a knee-jerk storm in the NRL Magic Round on Saturday.

Scans show that the New Zealand international sustained a medial ligament injury although Storm is hopeful it will not leave him for more than a fortnight.

Melbourne are in second place after losing to the Panthers but can’t get down the stairs further if they fall to the third-placed Cowboys in Townsville.

Among the number of injuries, including Ryan Papenhuizen, Reims Smith and Jahrom Hughes, Craig Bellamy’s men were given at least one encouragement by the return of Tui Comics against the Panthers.

The NRL rejected Fijian Prop and suspended him for nine games after he was charged with assault following an off-season incident in November last year.

Police charges were dropped and Kamikamika expressed relief when he returned for the storm.

“It’s good to be back,” he told AAP. “It’s been a long time, no matter how hard you train, match fitness is a different matter.

“I don’t focus on the media and outside noise, I just want to help the team get better.”

Beside associate forwards Asofa-Salomona, Tepai Moerro and Christian Welch, Kamika Mamika said she was aware she had to start from where she left off last season.

“When I was on the sidelines I wanted to come and do the same thing I’ve been doing for the last few years,” he said.

“Now that I’ve found the first game, I want to continue it.”

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