There is so much negativity surrounding our game in the media right now. Salary cap breaches, players turning on each other, fans burning jerseys. It’s all too much.
Let’s focus on some positives. After all rugby league, for all its faults, is still the greatest game of all.
Liam Knight returns to the Shire
Am I allowed to type something positive about the Sharks or will Buzz and co. block me on twitter?
Earlier in the year, a young former Sharks fan returned to the Shire in Cronulla to play against the club in front of friends and family.
Knight once traveled with the Sharks supporters group (the CSSC) to support the black, white and blue. He returned, in the lime green of the Raiders, to play in front of many who once traveled with him.
After the game the Sharks fans presented their former member with a personalised jersey and a welcoming round of applause.
There is far more to the story that has been told elsewhere, but it was an extremely nice moment and one that was well deserved.
Emre Guler’s Raiders debut
Who here honestly didn’t have to fight back a tear or two watching Emre Guler presented with his debut jumper for the Green Machine?
Watching his mother beam with pride, and herself cry, while handing the youngster the jersey he had been working so hard for, just wow.
The Canberra youngster looks the goods in terms of being a regular NRL forward but that moment will be hard to beat.
Thurston farewell respect
I’ve absolutely loved the tributes for retiring legend Johnathan Thurston. The Sharks had a special indigenous combined jersey made in his honour which was presented after full time.
Other clubs have formed guards of honour, or chaired the future immortal off.
Clubs’ fans have taken to applauding the superstar number seven as his name is announced in the pre-match.
Other retiring legends have received similar ovations but in Thurston’s case it has been extra special.
Warriors show Cecchin off in style
Retiring players have been receiving some emotional tributes over the past few weeks, but it’s unfortunately not often that referees are afforded the same send off.
The Warriors took a moment after Matt Cecchin announced his retirement from the NRL refereeing ranks with an amazing show of respect.
They welcomed him into the inner circle post match with Blake Green leading a thank you and congratulations speech.
It was a small gesture but one that should be remembered as one of the true highlights of the season.
— Vodafone Warriors (@NZWarriors) August 10, 2018
Moses Leota gift
Another tear jerking story came in the form of Panthers player Moses Leota being able to fly home and present his mother with a brand new car.
The smile on the Panthers youngster’s face when he presented the keys to his beloved mother was the stuff dreams are made of.
To work hard, achieve your dream and be able to purchase such a wonderful girl for the woman who sacrifised so much for his dream must have felt amazing.
This is the kind of story that should have received far more traction. It was beautiful.
Benji/Farah return to Tigers
It was a real shame when Robbie Farah was forced out of the Tigers. I’m not here to talk about who was to blame for the said move to the Bunnies, it doesn’t matter, but it sure was nice to see the Tigers legend done the orange and black again.
Benji Marshall lead the club to it’s first premiership before moving to the 15-man game. Stints at the Dragons and Broncos followed but it was written that he would return to where it all began.
Both just signed on for another season which just continues this amazing story.
One more. 🐯
Not all stories coming out of the game can be positive. As some twitter ‘journalists’ tweeted they’re “not cheerleaders” but it seems that the regular media is way too hung up on the negative.
Rugby league isn’t perfect but there’s nothing better than waking up on a Saturday knowing that there are three games of NRL plus an ISP/QLD Cup game on the tele.
We’ll go back to focusing on the negatives tomorrow but for now it’s good to re-live some of the positives our game produces.