News Satire People Food Other

The Ultimate Sporting Showdown

By Rupert Truscott-Hughes on March 26, 2015 in Other

Photo: Robert Bruns

Photo: Robert Bruns

Anyone who knows me in the slightest would be well aware that I am a ‘rugby man’. From my days as the Cranbrook 1st XV ball point, to my dalliance with officialdom as an assistant referee and my one-year tenure on the board of the New York Rugby Club (up the Nomads!) when I was stock-broking on Wall Street, the game they are said to play in heaven has been a big part of my life here on Earth.

When the Waratahs won their maiden Super Rugby crown last year I celebrated long and hard, and the two cases of Krug I consumed over the next few days did little to cloud the memories of such an emphatic victory. So it may surprise you that I am actually entering the 2015 football season most excited not about the return of the Tahs, but for the start of this year’s NRL competition.

You see, despite spending much of my youth despising rugby league (mainly for fear of being looked down upon), my love for the Eastern Suburbs and the dominance of its two clubs over the last couple of seasons has seen me do a swift 180-degree turn and become one of its biggest fans.

With the Roosters and Rabbitohs taking out the last two premierships, 2015 is perfectly poised to become the year that the two passionate clubs are finally pitted against one another in the decider. Sonny Bill may have slipped back to the land of the long white cloud and captain courageous Sam Burgess will definitely be missed having headed home to Old Blighty, both to play the game I once loved monogamously, but I still believe the stage is set for the ultimate showdown.

I’m sure the likes of Manly, Melbourne, the Bulldogs and others will have more than a few things to say about my early postulation, but that only serves to excite me even more. I can’t wait until the first weekend in October when I’m sitting in my private box, sucking on a Crown Lager (or whatever it is that well-to-do league lovers imbibe) and watching the Chooks and Bunnies go about their business.

Personally, I’ll be siding with the tri-colours, which shouldn’t be too surprising given that I still boast a full complement of teeth. Mitchell Pearce’s form at the end of 2014 was something to behold and I’m looking forward to seeing former Beast cover stars Boyd Cordner and Aidan Guerra running rampant once again.

Many people are writing the Roosters off and riding the Rabbits to go back-to-back in 2015, but I believe these predictions are far too premature. After all, plenty of punters wrongly placed their hard-earned on something similar happening last year. Unfortunately the Chooks never really looked a chance.

So this year I’m keeping the collar down and removing the knitted sweater from my shoulders. I’ll still follow my beloved Waratahs, but I’ll be saving my loudest roars for the Roosters. Cock-a-doodle-do!