Meet Phil Johnson, Orange Emus' flanker-come-centre who has never played in a grand final but has still managed to win one, has happily let his teammates know he considers himself 'a jinx' and has given himself the nickname 'Sonny Phil Williams'.
It's a lot to take in, especially the self-appointed moniker, although it's a sarcastic one considering the Johnson's shoulders are somewhat "unreliable" while Sonny Bill Williams has always appeared to have explosives built in to his.
"I can't get enough of self-appointed nicknames," Johnson laughed, before admitting his clubmates "definitely haven't got around it".
Homer Simpson said it best - 'de-fault, the two sweetest words in the English language'Emus' Phil Johnson
"They've told me a number of times I can't give myself my own nickname, and the ones who have been getting around it are taking the piss. That just makes me want to use it more though."
Self-deprecating nicknames aside, Saturday's Blowes Clothing Cup third grade grand final will be Johnson's first appearance in a decider in his 25 years, across any sport.
So, you ask, how did he still manage to win one?
"That was in under 17s cricket, and we did win that premiership. Both of the two days got washed out so we won it by default and never took the field but it's a title in my books," Johnson laughed.
"The only premiership I've won was by default and in a way the only reason I get to play in this grand final is by default, because there's only two teams in the competition. But Homer Simpson said it best - 'de-fault, the two sweetest words in the English language."
In terms of rugby, Johnson's played in more than half a dozen semi-finals across a plethora of difference grades during his time with Petersham, University of Wollongong and now Emus, who he linked with this year after moving to Orange.
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That's where the jinx part comes in.
"One win from those eight semi-finals, with Wollongong. One from eight is alright, isn't it?" he laughed.
"That goes all the way back to under 12s back in Grenfell too, so I'm absolutely a jinx at semi-final time. But it's not semi-final time anymore, now it's grand final time so who knows what could happen."
Johnson and his Emus take on Bathurst Bulldogs in Saturday's grand final at Anne Ashwood Park which, as the 25-year-old said, was a foregone conclusion, and is also a rematch of last year's decider.
Cowra did muster enough numbers for a side on the odd occasion, but chose not to take part in the finals, leaving Emus and Bulldogs to battle it out for supremacy. They've faced off four times this season, with Bulldogs winning all four.
A former Kinross first XV player-of-the-year and co-founder of the Wollongong Ibis, Johnson's 2019 season has been plagued by shoulder injuries that forced him to consider calling time, for this year anyway.
Instead he elected to be available for the greens' third grade side and from the bench in seconds, but considering his skill and versatility the former side's coaches elected to use him in the one sport they were short rather than in his preferred back-row spot.
"I probably have fallen into the centres by default, in a way. There's that word again, maybe that should be my nickname - 'Default Johnson'," he laughed.
"The club's great, my housemate Harry Cummins was here and when I moved here I was never going anywhere else, it's been a great year and even though I've battled injury it's still be good to get on the field when it's possible.
"In terms of this weekend, well, here's hoping."
The third grade decider will kick-off at 12.10pm.
- ORANGE EMUS: 1 Steve Fergus, 2 Mark Grivas, 3 Reece Bell, 4 Connor McGoverne, 5 Tom Macsmith, 6 Stu Brisbane, 7 Liam Finnane, 8 Tom Fenualelei, 9 Bryce Toohey, 10 Nick Granger, 11 Phil Jobs, 12 Rob Thorburn, 13 Nick Leslie, 14 Ben Corbett, 15 Josh Fitzgerald.
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