Woman’s Day (Australia)

‘Seeing his smile was so worth it!’

These kind-hearted teens surprised their mate with the ultimate gift


Rugby fanatic Lucas Watson’s dream came true when his classmates arranged a special surprise for the superfan – tickets to a Parramatta Eels game!

“That day was probably the best moment of my life,” Lucas tells Woman’s Day. “I couldn’t stop smiling.”

When St Andrew’s College student Zaine Nassar discovered his friend Lucas, who has cerebral palsy, had never seen his team play, he decided the time had come to change that.

“When Lucas told me he can’t get to the games, I felt really sad because he’s such a big football fan,” says Zaine, 17, from his home in Rouse Hill in Sydney’s north.

“I wanted to invite him to go.” Overnight Zaine arranged the tickets with help from his friends Andrew and Josh and, to keep it a surprise, called Lucas’ parents to confirm he’d be able to attend.

The next day he presented the tickets, a Parramatta jersey, beanie and scarf to Lucas during class. Seeing Lucas’ happy reaction was a moment Zaine will always remember.

“It was pretty emotional,” he recalls. “Lucas gave me a massive hug afterwards, and he doesn’t give anyone hugs.

“I know some people get worried about taking him out because he has a disability, but it’s no different to me, he is my friend.”

Lucas has an intellectu­al disability as well as weakness in his left arm while his dad Brian is unable to attend games due to his own chronic back pain. But seeing his son so happy was incredibly special. “When we got the call, my wife and I were nearly in tears, it was such a beautiful thing for them to organise,” says the Parramatta Eels fan who is delighted to have passed on his love for the team to his son.

“We were just so happy for him to have some true friendship and inclusion.”

Overwhelme­d with excitement at seeing his favourite players up close for the first time, Lucas, 17, couldn’t believe his friends were so thoughtful.

But the surprises didn’t stop there. Inspired by this act of kindness, Lucas and Zaine’s teachers arranged for a signed Eels jersey to be presented to Lucas at the game.

“I was over the moon,” says Lucas.

With the pandemic impacting crowds at sporting events at the moment, Lucas can’t wait to return to the stands with his friends again.

“Being at the game together, that’s one of the memories

I will remember forever,” he says. “Without Zaine this wouldn’t be possible, he’s a really great friend.”

‘We were so happy for him to have some true friendship’

 ?? ?? Attending the game together was a special moment for all the boys.
Lucas will never forget his classmates’ kind gift.
Attending the game together was a special moment for all the boys. Lucas will never forget his classmates’ kind gift.

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