Who you going for in GF?

The Boss

BRL Player
Feb 15, 2016
42
30
Nrl get their dream "battle of the West" Grand Final. I hope Parramatta win as I cannot fathom hearing Nathan Cleary be heralded as the GOAT. Phil Gould bragging how good Panthers are and how is responsible for their success. Luai is so unlikeable seeing him upset is priceless. While I really have nothing against Parramatta don't have any grubs and feel sorry for their fanbase longest premiership drought.
 

Fitzy

NRL Player
Sep 10, 2018
2,451
2,796
I hate Penrith but I hate the Eels even more. Hard to watch either team win but I have Panthers just in front at the minute. Couldn’t care less really though.
 

Big Pete

International Captain
Mar 12, 2008
29,822
19,414
Penrith maybe the most dominant team I've seen. Not only did they finish well above everyone but they've been able to maintain this standard for three consecutive seasons now and there is no end in sight. Even when they lose key players they still win the vast majority of games.

This has been a long time in the making for Parramatta. They've been doing this song and dance since 2017 and this shapes as their best opportunity before they replenish their team. It's a team largely made up of cast-offs, good players, but not good enough to ever be considered priorities. For a lot of these players, this is going to be their one shot at glory and one opportunity to go down in the history books.

It's probably the best match-up you could have got in 2022. It reminds me of Djokovic vs. Murray circa 2012/13, with Murray being thereabouts but largely considered behind Novak, Rafa and Roger. It's just a shame their previous encounter was such a blow-out. There is the Moses excuse but even before that Penrith appeared well on top with Parra making a lot of errors trying to keep up.
 

Big Pete

International Captain
Mar 12, 2008
29,822
19,414
Thinking back on the lead-up to the previous Grand Finals...

2021 - I enjoyed the Bennett/Cleary & Reynolds & Benji/Cleary dynamic. Bennett got the chocolates early and Penrith really had to prove they could stand up in the big games.

2020 - It was odd watching Melbourne go in as underdogs. COVID sucked the enjoyment out of footy, but the dynamic of the best team taking on the most dominant team of the past 15 years made for a good match-up.

2019 - It was a similar dynamic to this year with Canberra serving as the battlers taking on this champion Roosters team.

2018 - With Cooper Cronk long odds to play, this felt like Melbourne's game to lose. So much energy was spent on whether Slater could play and it really exposed how bad the judiciary system is.

2017 - Melbourne had one of the most charmed finals runs I can remember. All three teams were under-strength so it made for a fairly predictable (but deserved) premiership on their end. The Cowboys run was actually far more intriguing, but as it turned out, that was really their last run until '22.

2016 - I should have been more excited for this. This was the first time Cronulla would play in a traditional grand final since the 70s and they had some of the biggest personalities in their team. However something about that team set my alarm off and I couldn't help but feel cynical about it. Turns I was right, but the NRL squirmed out of punishing the team.

2015 - I know I shouldn't talk about it, but the build up was great. Both teams had played a wonderful game that was everything Rugby League should be and both teams were really even on paper. Easily one of the more even GF match-ups you'll see.

2014 - Just felt like a victory lap for Souths after they beat Sydney in the Prelim Final.

2013 - There was a time where we thought Manly would be the most dominant club of the 10s with Foran/DCE staking their claim as the greatest halves pairing of all-time. It didn't work out, but it added to the intrigue of the GF. Both teams were coming off a great game from earlier and while the Roosters went in as favourites, you could see a Manly upset.

2012 - The spiritual successor to the third Manly/Melbourne GF we never got. It was still Des/Bellamy, except Des was at a different club. At the time, both coaches were vying for the right to be called the best coach in the game and the winner was going to win that argument, at least for the mean time.

2011 - You just never knew what you were going to get with the Warriors. Would you get the Warriors that played Melbourne and Wests? Or were you going to get the ones who faced Brisbane? It really felt like their afternoon, with all three of their teams being represented but it never materialised. Similarly it felt like the Sea Eagles were onto bigger and better things only for Hasler to hightail it, which was the beginning of the end for them.

2010 - After 1999, you just wondered whether the Dragons as an organisation could ever win the big one. They had everything going for them this year - they had Bennett, they got to bring in an international centre for the run home for the finals and the defending premiers were out of the equation entirely. Everything pointed to an easy Dragons victory, but we knew this song and dance. However they were also up against Brian Smith who for whatever reason could not get his team up for the big occassions. Could he rectify that with some of the form players in the comp like Carney?

2009 - Was all about the Hayne Plane stepping up to their big-time rivals. Melbourne weren't quite as strong as they had been in year's previous so you could sense an Eels upset. However you knew it wouldn't be long until Melbourne were right back as their NYC side was in the GF. With players like Widdop, Bromwich, Proctor, O'Neil etc. coming through you just knew they were going to be in the mix for a long time.

2008 - Truth be told, I was more interested in the NYC Grand Final. Despite losing Smith, I think I still had Melbourne winning this one because I had my doubts over their players in the big matches - didn't that look silly in the end. However without Smith, it was always going to be tougher for Melbourne, I just thought the match was going to be better than what it was. This was one of the few times where Melbourne actually looked vulnerable - blown out in a GF, Billy's gaffe in the World Cup and Bellamy losing Origin to a
Karmichael/JT halves pairing, they no longer looked invincible.

2007 - I was actually down in Sydney for the build-up and it was crazy how much they were building an us vs. them narrative against Melbourne. Just wall to wall coverage on how awful Melbourne are while there were so many stories about what a Manly win would do for the community. It really showed me how insular I was and the influence the media has. Regardless, Melbourne were far and away the best team and just seemed to be travelling like Usain Bolt - just doing enough to win.

2006 - Melbourne were far and away the best team, but Brisbane were coming off an awe-inspiring comeback and up to that point had never lost a Grand Final. With so many big game players in form for the Broncos, it really evened things up, especially after Michael Crocker was suspended. That was a really good omen for the Broncos, a theme that would continue through out that entire match. To this day, I'm still pinching myself over that year. I'm still awe-struck like Sally McLellan winning Silver at Beijing.

2005 - It was an exciting match from the stand-point that both clubs were technically playing their first ever Grand Final. You still had some Tigers supporters from 1988-89 but largely it was two under-represented fanbases sharing the limelight. Unfortunately after Week 1 where the Tigers scorched the Cowboys the result was fairly evident.

2004 - A Grand Final two seasons in the making. The Bulldogs claimed they were the uncrowned premiers of 2002, Sydney eliminated them in 2003 and the Bulldogs were out for revenge in 2004. Fittler's final game and in many ways an end of an era.

2003 - I was all aboard the Panthers bandwagon, so I was excited to watch this. Penrith were the form team of the competition, but their defence had a huge question mark on it and the Roosters had flogged them in their previous encounter. Attack rarely beats defence in these games, so we all had our fingers crossed.

2002 - Either way you were going to see history. Either the Warriors would win their first premiership ever, or the Roosters would win their first premiership since the 70s. Not a bad match-up, although as a Broncos fan it was difficult not to feel miffed.

2001 - Parramatta had such an unbelievable season that just about everyone had their name etched on the premiership. Heading into the game though you could just sense some self-doubt creeping in and they weren't as dominant as they should have been, especially in the Prelim final against Brisbane. It still seemed like the Eels would win, but it was going to be high scoring.

It was also the first night time final which made for a novel experience. It soon wore off quickly and the game was so much better as a day time sport.

2000 - I completely took the build up for granted. I thought Brisbane were going to win easy and barely had a doubt in my mind. There was a brief second when Fitzgibbon scored, but as soon as he missed the kick I knew Brisbane were home. Only 14-6, but it was a different game back then. I just remember the salt after the game, with Gus declaring it the weakest season of all-time after the Broncos won.
 

Galah

State of Origin Rep
Mar 28, 2019
5,704
9,020
I’d only be able to withstand watching this is if I was Drinking something nice, but seeing as it’s on at the stupidest time possible I doubt I’ll watch much.

NRL kicking goals once again only thinking about tv views, stupid time slot!
 

Super Freak

International Captain
Forum Staff
Jan 25, 2014
34,372
22,038
I'm going for Parra. For several reasons.

1. I've always enjoyed watching Parra play. They play an expansive style of footy, but with their pack they're also a very physical team that can win dirty if they need to.
2. It's my late uncle's team. As well as my aunties.
3. **** Penrith.
 

Morkel

International Captain
Jan 25, 2013
23,927
24,513
Eels. Not because it's my Conspiracy Train prediction, but because I can not stand the blatant platter-handing the NRL has done towards Penrith. In fact after what we've seen in the last month, I don't think anyone can call that aspect of the conspiracy a conspiracy any more.

After the lenient "punishments" the NRL handed the Panthers players, I'm almost certain my prediction was wrong, as it was the perfect opportunity to nobble them and make the Eels fairytale easier to ensure.
 

Foordy

International Captain
Mar 4, 2008
29,275
30,502
Part of me wants to see the Eels fall at the final hurdle, continuing their premiership drought

another part of me wants to see the Panthers lose, giving them 1 premiership from 3 straight GF's (similar to the Roosters in the early 00's)

both of these parts are fighting for dominance, i'm not sure which side will win by Sunday
 

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