WHAT a weekend it was for Gunnedah!
Finally, after close to three decades, our AFL team has tasted premiership victory.
The Gunnedah Bulldogs were crowned the North West AFL champions, after breaking the New England Nomads’ stranglehold on the silverware with a late fourth quarter spurt at Wolseley Oval on Saturday.
The victory – breaking their 26-year premiership drought – couldn’t have come at a better time.
The club celebrates its 40th year this year. How proud our shire must be of this team.
Club legend John Woolaston, who after 160 games spanning 15 years, finally got to experience playing in a grand final. And what an experience it was.
“It’s an absolutely sensational feeling,” Woolaston told the NVI.
And he’s dead right. For the club to chase its first premiership since 1991 is a huge milestone in itself.
But to come away with a victory the same year that the club turns 40 is an even greater achievement. And to do all that on home turf is even better.
The club has proven that perseverance and a love for the game prevails above all else. It’s a lesson we can all learn from.
So if you see any of our Gunnedah Bulldogs AFL players out and about, be sure to congratulate them.
But let it be clear that they aren’t the only Bulldogs worthy of recognition.
The Gunnedah Bulldogs rugby league team pulled off the heist of the season when they beat the undefeated Narrabri Blues in the Group 4 First Division reserve grade grand final on Sunday.
It was a two-day celebration across two codes in Gunnedah over the weekend.
Gunnedah was the only team throughout the year to come within two points of Narrabri, and the Bulldogs turned the tables to take out the title 24-22 on Sunday.
To see so many Gunnedah supporters don the red, blue and white over the weekend was incredible. In so many celebratory photos after, Bulldogs are hugging and posing with teammates, supporters, families and children.
In so many regional towns, sport is an invaluable social thread that can bring a community together. Sport is a great equaliser. It brings together people from all walks of life. To see support Gunnedah with such pride is a huge feather in our sporting cap that speaks volumes of our community.