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SBW leaves mark as Roosters take out GF

If it was one and done, Sonny Bill Williams made sure the ride was worth it, coming up big when it mattered to deliver the Sydney Roosters a premiership win for the ages in a 26-18 grand final defeat of Manly.
SBW leaves mark as Roosters take out GF
by AAP

By Steve Jancetic

SYDNEY, Oct 6 AAP - If it was one and done, Sonny Bill Williams made sure the ride was worth it, coming up big when it mattered to deliver the Sydney Roosters a premiership win for the ages in a 26-18 grand final defeat of Manly.

Quiet for the opening hour, Williams came up with clutch plays to set up the Roosters' final two tries, the tri-colours coming from ten points down to run over the Sea Eagles in an epic contest.

It may well prove to be his farewell gift to the club and the game with speculation he could be heading back to rugby union - the gamble to bring him and fellow stars Michael Jennings and James Maloney paying off as coach Trent Robinson became the sixth coach to win a title at his first attempt.

"It's an awesome feeling," said Maloney, who along with Williams was unlucky not to take out the Clive Churchill Medal - an honour which went to Daly Cherry-Evans - the third time it had gone to a player from the losing side.

"We worked our arses off all year, it's what we deserve."

Asked about the possibility of Williams leaving, Maloney said:

"I'll strap myself to him, he's not going anywhere."

The dual international offered few clues as to his future, as he added the NRL premiership to the Rugby World Cup and Super Rugby title he had won in the preceding two years.

"I'll try and get it in the next couple of weeks," Williams said of a decision on what he will do.

"The last month I've stayed off social media and everything, just knuckled down to get to this point."

While they will deny claims they bought a premiership, the big dollars invested by the Roosters in the star trio paid off when it mattered most.

A Williams offload for Maloney set up the try which gave the Roosters a second half lead they would not relinquish, though the Sea Eagles would rightly be aggrieved at a forward pass from Maloney to Anthony Minichiello after the bust.

Then Maloney came up with his third try assist of the night with a grubber for a flying Michael Jennings seven minutes from time, which broke the hearts of a Sea Eagles side which lost to the Roosters for the fourth time this year, just the third time such a feat has occurred.

While the Sea Eagles did benefit from a penalty try just after halftime that could have gone either way, they did get the wrong end of the stick a number of times form the referees, though coach Geoff Toovey wasn't about to repeat the blow-up which cost him $10,000 earlier in the year.

"There's no use speaking now emotionally, you get in trouble for that," Toovey said, before noticing NRL head of football Todd Greenberg in the back of the room.

"Sorry, some of us get in trouble for that."

Toovey admitted they shouldn't have let the game go when leading 18-8 early in the second half, but this was a Roosters side that was not to be denied.

And what would one of the greatest grand finals of all time be without an epic comeback to crown the champion.




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Knightastic

Knightastic

another crucial try coming off a forward pass for the chooks, been happening all year. What a JOKE!
Bring on the A league, the real football contest!!! 


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