Rothery quits after Tigers maul Central
By AARON KELLY ? CENTRAL Comets gamebreaker Wade Rothery dropped a bombshell yesterday in announcing his retirement after his side's 52-10 loss to the Easts Tigers at Rockhampton's Browne Park.
Rothery, 28, told his team-mates before the match and led the Comets on to Browne Park for one last time, but there was no fairytale ending.
"That's it ? no more Comets, no more local league,'' Rothery said.
Rothery, who joined the Brisbane Broncos as a 16-year-old, said lost motivation and the rigours of 12 seasons at the highest level had taken its toll.
After walking out on the club during the pre-season, Rothery returned to the Queensland Cup in round five against Norths.
"I came back and wanted to give it a go,'' Rothery said. "But I just thought it wasn't right and I'm hanging them (boots) up for good.''
The Comets were given a rugby league lesson by the Tigers with the Queensland Cup leaders running out convincing winners in the round six clash. The game was effectively over at half-time following tries to Steve Beattie, Jason Connors, Mark Cantoni and Steven Goodhew.
Rothery helped inspired the Comets back into the contest when he charged down a Tigers fifth-tackle play and raced 80 metres before Tigers fullback Matt Lockyer pounced.
On the ensuing play, Comets second-rower Herewini Rangi crashed over and converted his try to take the scores to 12-10.
But the Comets were their own worst enemies with simple errors again hurting the home side.
Despite the Comets boasting the second worst defence behind Souths Logan after the opening six rounds, Rothery believes the club is improving week-by-week and admitted the players' attitude remained high.
The Comets face another mammoth task on Saturday when they take on premiers the Burleigh Bears at Pizzey Park in the round seven ABC television game.