Just one big thread for these 2 games. Could be a big weekend for SE Qld. They could win all 3 trophies up for grabs on the NRL Grand Final card and take out the AFL too, though there's only one trophy most of them will be interested in.
In the AFL Collingwood v Brisbane becomes the first Grand Final to occur 3 times in the AFL era (1990 onwards). Brisbane won the previous two. One was a knife edge thriller with controversial scoring decisions ultimately decided by a freakish snap from Jason Ackerman's with 5 minutes on the clock. The second was a thrashing.
Brisbane have won 6 straight over Collingwood, have been more convincing in their two finals and have won 11 out of 13. For Collingwood the main argument for is that Brisbane have lost 14 out of 15 at the MCG and one could argue that Melbourne and GWS were stringer opposition than Port Adelaide and Carlton. The key fact though is that it's Collingwood in a Grand Final. We don't win these. Big leads? Blown. Home field advantage? Squandered. I don't trust them. Lions by 34.
In the NRL we have two clubs who've appeared on a collision course for most of the season. Penrith trying to complete the first 3peat since Parramatta 40 years ago and Brisbane trying to regain the crown they held seemingly by default in the 90s. Penrith look like they're going just slightly better for mine. Back at full strength at the right time. Brisbane showed some weaknesses, particularly early, last week. I reckon the Panthers by 12.
Pies name Billy Frampton (not a forward) to replace Dan McStay (our best forward), while Super Sub Jack Ginnivan (he's a forward) will start with Pat Lipinski (largely ineffective utility last week) demoted to sub duties.
And in NRL news Brad Fittler has stepped down as NSW State of Origin coach. The right thing to do. Ricky Stuart and Craig Bellamy early suggestions to replace him.
I’m starting to think I should’ve celebrated and enjoyed ‘05 much much more than I did.
You really don't understand how rare premierships are when you're young. Luckily by 2010, having only seen 1 premiership between my 2 clubs and 7 Grand Final losses, I really went to town. Same last night.
Should also mention Collingwood coach Craig Mcrae's day: became a father for the third time (1st in his current marriage) in the early hours of the morning and a premiership coach later in the day. Two other interesting things about McRae: he was an assistant at the Melbourne Storm training the players in kicking and catching (smart, on a similar level to Paul Roos getting a Roosters assistant to train the Swans in tackling in the early 00s) and he's the only player from the Lions' 2001-03 3peat who is still on speaking terms with Jason Akermanis. McRae was in the bridal party at Aker's wedding (only Lion who attended) and they own a business together.