A new game of the year contender graced the screens in Round 8 as crowds returned to New South Wales venues and two coaches moved one step further down a greasy pole. Here are my talking points for the weekend.
Take it from someone who saw their team win their first title in 43 years; grand final week is a surreal experience that should be appreciated to the fullest.
Sharks fans, I feel what you’re feeling. Just two years ago the mighty Rabbitohs made their first grand final in 43 long years, and while I didn’t have to wait nearly as long as some others did, it was surely a cause for celebration.
The streets were littered with red and green flags and the number of white bunnies on the back windows of cars had multiplied to an uncountable amount.
There was just something in the air, a real sense of pride and celebration in the community. To all those donning black, white and blue this weekend, enjoy it.
Soak it all in, because it doesn’t come around very often.
Wear your jersey everywhere you go. Paint everything you see black, white and blue. Start conversations with people on the streets. Drive around the area and really see what the community turns into.
No doubt that there’s still one massive hurdle to come across in the NRL’s serial antagonists, the Melbourne Storm, but even if the Sharkies do lose, there’s still a sense of pride that they made it and did their best.
Should they win, well, expect there to be a whole lot of celebration over the summer down in the Sutherland Shire. I remember when the Rabbitohs finally lifted the Provan-Summons trophy and after a long night of celebration, 20,000 of the Rabbitohs faithful congregated down to Redfern Oval to see the team celebrate and congratulate them one last time.
No doubt that the same will be done at Shark Park should Cronulla do the same.
Sharkies, enjoy the week ahead. It may fill you with nerves, it may fill you with confidence, and there’s bound to be a bit of conflict inbetween, but no matter the result, always be proud of your team. I know I’ll be cheering them on come Sunday night.
Up, Up Cronulla.