Wednesday, October 14, 2009
That Friday night, The Courier-Mail chief-of-staff called me into his office.
"Mr Kavanagh, pick up a long-distance Holden from the garage on your way home tonight," he said. "I want you to go up north first thing in the morning because they're officially opening a new stretch of road that will give us bitumen all the way from Brisbane to Maryborough."
I blinked and stammered.
Blakie stared at me, frowning.
"What's it to be brother," he said. "Your football or your job?"
I was only just married and my wife, Jan, and I had spent all our savings on our honeymoon to Hayman Island, a few months before. There was very little money in football.
So I rang and told Bax I couldn't play, picked up the Holden and said goodbye to rugby league. My league career was over at the age of 21.
I was so upset I couldn't watch or listen to rugby league for the next three years and then I was forced back into it not as a player, but as the back-up league writer to the great Jack Reardon.
Prior to that, after giving up league, I had been promoted to junior police rounds. It was all night work, talking to police, ambulance officers, firemen and doctors and nurses.
Posted by Kavanagh's Queensland at 10:32 PM