The 2020 Volunteers Cup grand final-winning Goodna Eagles side. Picture: Bruce Clayton
The 2020 Volunteers Cup grand final-winning Goodna Eagles side. Picture: Bruce Clayton

Goodna’s ‘best ever’ team can celebrate as Tigers stand tall

BOMBER'S BLAST

Anthony Breeze

THE 2020 Volunteers Cup has been run and won by the Goodna Eagles.

They were the best team all year losing only one goal before a thumping win in the grand final.

This Eagles team was talented with some saying it was the best Goodna team ever assembled.

It started at the back with Player of the Year Besse Aufaga-Toomaga and ended upfront with Rez Phillips and Josh Afoa.

In between these stars, we got to see some youngsters on the rise in Elone Taufa, Wilson Malaesilia and Fa'ata'ape Timai.

The halves combination Tristan Sami and Trivendra Naidu wasn't electric but did the job they were there to do and did it with great pose.

Captain Ramon Filipine was outstanding again this year. His efforts inspired fellow Eagles in hooker Kaustio Magele and lock Saunda Seumanatafa to play brilliantly on the big day.

While the top 13 got most of the pundits, the bench was tremendous when they got their chances to enter the fray.

DREAM TEAM: Can they stick together?

Although Goodna were the best team, Norths can hold their heads up high as they also had a super year culminating in an appearance on grand final day.

Rugby League Ipswich (RLI) and its volunteers can pat themselves on the back as it looked like footy action woudn't take place this year until this competition was arranged.

From all reports, the three RLI and three Toowoomba Rugby League teams loved the idea of playing different clubs and players and travelling to different grounds.

Rugby league is finished for the year locally and we all hope that 2021 gets us back

to a full RLI competition.

Enjoy the off-season.

NRL ref Belinda Sleeman. Photographer: Liam Kidston
NRL ref Belinda Sleeman. Photographer: Liam Kidston

Ipswich in national grand final spotlight

NRL Grand Final Day will have a touch of Ipswich with the NRLW final to

be officiated by former Ipswich referee Belinda Sleeman.

Sleeman has run lines all year in the NRL but now gets the opportunity to strut her

stuff in the middle this weekend with the Broncos and Roosters to battle it out for NRLW glory.

The AFL also has a touch of Ipswich with superstar and world number one tennis player Ash Barty getting the chance to present the AFL trophy if Richmond win.

Barty is a lifelong Tigers fan and will be cheering the side to victory with beer in hand and jersey on.

AFL day will also feature local singer Tim McCallum, who received the great honour of singing the national anthem.

Dally M winner Ali Brigginshaw. Picture: Josh Woning
Dally M winner Ali Brigginshaw. Picture: Josh Woning

Quick thoughts

POSITIVES 1. We all know that Ali Brigginshaw is a super talent on the league

field and it was a great honour when she was awarded the Dally M. Her performances this year have been stellar and another NRLW title might just crown a great week.

2. Brisbane L:ions star Lachie Neale was the red-hot favourite to win the Brownlow Medal and that's exactly what happened. He had a super season and the award was richly deserved.

3. The Ipswich women's softball team that went to Rockhampton for the state titles came home as state champions. Well done.

NEGATIVES: 1. The AFL marketing department got it horribly wrong by letting Lachie Neale present the Brownlow to himself. Surely his coach or another champion Lions player from the past could have down the honour.

2. COVID has a lot to answer for as my 20 plus years of attending consecutive NRL grand finals will come to an end this year. The only plus is the wallet is a little fatter.

Sporting birthdays

1. 1900: Douglas Jardine - English cricketer who was the man responsible for the implementation of Bodyline.

2. 1940: Pele - Born Edison Arantes do Nascimento, he was widely regarded as the greatest soccer player to ever play the game.

On this day

1. 1964: Smokin Joe Frazier dominates German Hans Huber to win Olympic Gold at the Tokyo Games.

2. 1973: 19-year-old Chris Evert retains her WTA Tour Championship defeating Nancy Richey 6-3, 6-3.

3. 1977: Austrian Niki Lauda wins his 2nd Formula 1 World Drivers Championship by 17 points.

4. 2019: Kyrie Irving sets NBA record for most points on debut (50) with a new club.