by GREG INGLIS
A GAME like tonight’s season opener is one of the reasons I play Rugby League.
Thinking about the crowd, the anticipation . . . it’s what makes everything we do, every shuttle run, every push-up, every game played throughout the year, worthwhile.
Taking on the defending premiers in Round One at a heaving Stadium Australia, it doesn’t get any better.
And after two years of near-misses here at the Rabbitohs, this new NRL season can’t come quickly enough. Personally, I’ve spent five months willing it on.
Every player at every club understands the expectations from their Members and supporters and it’s no different here at South Sydney.
And we welcome the level of expectation as much as we welcome their support throughout the season.
All of us here at the Rabbitohs understand we have the largest, most vocal Members and supporters in rugby league – I even saw Al Bundy rockin’ a Souths cap the other day – and we want to do them proud every time we step out on the field.
We hope to see a huge red and green contingent in the stands tonight at Stadium Australia.
We can’t hear you cheer from your lounge room, so it would be great to see you at Stadium Australia tonight.
This is also a huge year of personal milestones for some of our boys.
Our captain Johnny Sutton is set to become the most capped Rabbitohs player. Nath Merritt, the greatest tryscorer. These are great achievements, but I know the boys will enjoy them along the way with all us in the team during this big season, and hopefully we can reach our ultimate goal as a team as well.
It’s also going to be a year where the biggest players, guys like Johnathan Thurston, Daly Cherry-Evans and Sonny Bill Williams, have to stand up for their clubs.
In fact, that’s what makes March such a great time of year — Dally Ms, Origin jerseys, Anzac Test spots and premiership rings . . . they’re all up for grabs and everyone is in the mix.
But, right now, our focus is on the Roosters.
On the game tonight.
*Greg Inglis is an Stadium Australia ambassador