Winners Wests Tigers team photo after the Australian 2005 National Rugby League (NRL) Grand Final match North Queensland Cowboys v Wests Tigers in Sydney, Sunday, Oct. 2, 2005. Wests Tigers won 30 - 16. (AAP Image/Jenny Evans)
Winners Wests Tigers team photo after the Australian 2005 National Rugby League (NRL) Grand Final match North Queensland Cowboys v Wests Tigers in Sydney, Sunday, Oct. 2, 2005. Wests Tigers won 30 - 16. (AAP Image/Jenny Evans)

CLARENCE CHATTERBOX: Footy season is nearly here again

AS WE march into autumn the start of the 2020 NRL season is nearly upon us, which means we can look forward to the first punt of the Steeden downfield on Thursday when the Eels take on the Bulldogs.

For those supporters of teams like the Roosters, Storm, Raiders, Sea Eagles, Eels, Bunnies and Broncos the prediction is that you will have something to cheer about during the upcoming season.

For the rest of us, we can most likely look forward to planning Mad Monday celebrations in early September.

From the Balmain days I have been a Tigers supporter. When Benny, Blocker, Siro, Wayne Pearce and Tim Brasher led a stellar playing roster and with every game we had something to roar about.

In 2005 the joint venture with the Magpies delivered a premiership but since then an admission of being a Tigers supporter is generally met with "oh that's unfortunate", but rest assured I will cheer from the sidelines again this year (sometimes in silence if the score blows out too much).

There is a lot of anticipation surrounding the 2020 season.

Valentine Holmes is back in the NRL after deciding that driving on the opposite side of the road in the United States of America was too confusing for him.

Latrell Mitchell's move from fowl to rabbit will be met with excitement from fans. He may reconsider his desire to play fullback after he takes his first high ball and is met with a 120kg front rower. Let's hope he stay injury free as he could be a major contributor for the NSW Blues this year.

On that note, my prediction is for NSW to make it three series in a row this year. I sense a new dynasty on the horizon.

With the likes of Payne Haas, Jack Wighton, the Trbojevic brothers, Nathan Cleary, Luke Keary, and Damien Cook waiting to have another shot at the maroons, my feeling is that the Cane Toads will again be flattened in this year's Origin series.

Whichever way it goes the onset of the footy season means cooler weather, less humidity and hopefully the retreat of the swarms of mosquito's currently harassing the Clarence Valley.



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