Seven days ago Bathurst Panthers prop Brent Seager was sitting on the Wade Park sideline with one hell of a headache after being knocked out trying to tackle Orange Hawks’ big bopper Saul Houma in his side’s Group 10 premier league preliminary final win.
Naturally, there was serious doubt about whether he’d take his place in the front row in Sunday’s grand final at Cowra’s Sid Kallas Oval.
He did though, and a week after being sent to Disneyland he’s not just a premiership-winner, he’s also a Dave Scott Medal winner.
Seager was named man-of-the-match in Panthers’ miracle 12-10 win over Cowra, which was sealed by a Willie Wright conversion three minutes from full-time.
The bookend was magnificent, producing a typically tradesman-like effort in the middle and inspiring his side’s massive momentum swing in the second half with it.
“It was going to take more than [being knocked out] to keep me out,” Seager smiled, just after receiving his deserved MVP gong.
“I actually took a pretty heavy knock [on Sunday] too, but you just have to soldier on, that’s what being a front-rower’s all about.
“Eleven years I waited for this, I can’t describe it. I’m not a man that shows much emotion, but that brought me to tears. I’m speechless in a way.
“I always knew we’d be right, I always knew, even when we were (10-nil down after 13 minutes).
“We always seem to do this, you know, leave it until the last minute. We just like making everyone nervous I reckon.
“I said to the boys ‘the tide will turn, the tide will turn’. We knew we’re a second-half side and we just had to stick at it, and Willie, I always knew that kick was going over.”
Making the moment even more special for Seager was the fact he was finally able to celebrate a premier league title alongside his brother Blake.
They were one of three sets of brothers in the Panthers squad, along with Jye and Kade Barrow and Jake and Jed Betts.
“Not many blokes get to do that, it’s unreal. I love him, he’s a legend,” Brent said of his brother.
“It was a heavy knock, I knew it’d be a hard task for him to play so I wasn’t sure if we’d get the chance to win this one together,” Blake admitted, speaking of his brother being knocked out the week before.
“But he’s one of the toughest blokes I’ve ever played with, and you know with him getting older and only having a couple of years left I’m glad it’s happened.
“I might be a bit biased, but he really deserved [man-of-the-match], he deserves it every game.”
Blake went on to say how chuffed he was to get the job done, in general, after years of being in Panthers sides that promised so much but never delivered.
“We’ve hung around with those top three sides for a while, so to finally get there and to do it with [Brent] and all those blokes that I’ve grown up playing with, it’s unreal.
“Everyone wrote us off at the start of the year but we knew the squad we had was capable of doing this, it’s paid off now.