Delaney backs "Bash Brother" Bailey ahead of testimonial
Leeds Rhinos star Brett Delaney believes house mate Ryan Bailey deserves a bumper crowd for his testimonial game against London Broncos on Friday night at Headingley Carnegie because of the loyalty the prop has shown to his home town club over the last 13 years.
Bailey and Delaney have earned the nickname of the 'Bash Brothers' amongst Rhinos fans and became great friends since the Australian moved to Leeds in 2010 so much so that a special t-shirt celebrating the cult pair has been launched to raise funds for Bailey's testimonial.
The second rower, who like Bailey is renowned for never taking a backwards step, says that often his friends actions on the field lead to a false impression from some about what he is like away from the action. He added, "Everyone thinks he is some big thug but that is on the pitch, it's not reality. He is always laughing and smiling off the field, you just need to earn his trust but once you have that you can see the great qualities he has and probably not many people have seen that down the years. He obviously has a lot of love for his mum, who brought him up, and he adores her along with the rest of his family. When it comes down to it, he is a loyal bloke and loyalty is not something that happens over night, you are brought up with it and that is why we are similar. When you grow up you learn to appreciate a lot of things and loyalty is top of that list. Ryan is very loyal once he trusts you. People think he is arrogant but the opposite is true, he is quite shy and likes to keep himself to himself.”
The pair have lived together for the last two years and this close season, Delaney decided to set down some roots in Leeds by buying a new place and there was only one option when it came to his choice of lodger! He commented, "Living together is good for both of us, it has been a great two years. When you click with someone who is similar to you, that makes life easier. Around the house he is funny, we bounce off each other, when he wants to he can cook, he can turn his hand to anything but I didn't know that for the first six months! People probably think the club is crazy in letting us live together but actually it brings a balance to both of us.”
Last year saw speculation in the press linked Bailey with a move to the NRL with Brisbane Broncos heavily linked to the prop forward. Delaney advised his friend about the possible move and believes if he had not decided to stay at his home town club that the next best thing would have been a move to the NRL in Australia.
He added, "Talent wise I have no doubt he could have been a success in the NRL. He and JP are the only front rowers I can think of who can play 80 minutes. He is naturally gifted with fitness and aggression, every side needs that and the Australian public would have loved him over there. The hard thing was thinking about leaving his kids but the fans would have taken too him straight away. It would have been good for him but things move on. However, the NRL isn't always the answer. Leeds is a family and the club care about you as a person, because of the competition and the prizes on offer over there it is cut throat and that can be harsh on the players.”