Pen­rith 19, Can­berra 12

Rugby League Week - - News -

“Brandy” Alexan­der cap­tained the Pan­thers to their maiden premier­ship and when he took to the stage to ac­cept the tro­phy and make a speech, he be­gan by lift­ing the Win­field Cup and say­ing: “Here it is. We’ve waited a long time for this. For the peo­ple of Pen­rith. This.”

They’d waited since en­ter­ing the comp back in 1967, and in 2016, the club’s 50th year, Alexan­der says the mem­ory of that first win has be­come even more poignant for him.

“It was spe­cial and I guess that feel­ing of what you’ve ac­com­plished doesn’t re­ally sink in un­til years later and you have oc­ca­sions that re­mind you of its im­por­tance, like when Pen­rith won it a sec­ond time, in 2003, and we cel­e­brated our 50 years this year and in­tro­duced the Hall of Fame,” he says.

“I meant ev­ery word of that speech, ab­so­lutely. A lot of the play­ers in the team were lo­cals who grew up play­ing with or against each other as ju­niors and it was im­por­tant not just for us as play­ers, but for the whole com­mu­nity.

“For a lot of the match it didn’t look like we were go­ing to get home. We were up against a cham­pion team and we had to find some­thing spe­cial, but we did.”

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