The Jets went out to a 12-0 early lead but at halftime led narrowly 12-10. The two teams traded try for try in the second half, and with just 15 minutes remaining, the Tigers were up 18-16. It was a very close contest. In the final minutes Nafe Seluini darted from dummy half, burrowing his way under the Balmain defence to score. Daniel Mortimer converted and the Jets held on to win.
The grand final victory is the first premiership win for the Jets since claiming the Wills Cup in 1973 (under coach Jack Gibson).
Captain Daniel Mortimer deserves special mention. His kicking game was all class. He led the team with consummate skill and will no doubt press for inclusion in the NRL in 2013.
Newtown Jets 22 (D Tupou, J Bosden, F Vaiotu, N Seluini tries; D Mortimer 3 goals) bt Balmain Ryde-Eastwood Tigers 18 (A Seumanufagai, S Meaney, D Chisholm, J Davis tries; S Meaney goal).
Meanwhile, at the Alexandria Hotel, Swans fans were still celebrating a mighty victory over the Hawks the day before. Fans were overheard chanting, “LRT! LRT!”, the initials of Lewis Roberts-Thomson, the Sydney defender who played a blinder, even kicking a brilliant goal. Publican Darren “Harry” McAsey was one of the first Swans players to migrate from South Melbourne in 1982.
SSH editor, Esther Butcher, travelled to the “G” for the big game. She sent the following one-word report: “Swannnnnies!!” The Swans’ last premiership was in 2005, but it was only the red-and-white’s second premiership in 79 years. Sydney Swans bt Hawthorn Hawks 14.7 (91) – 11.15 (81).