Grand Final tale of redemption and resurrection

Redemption and resurrection will underpin the Dragons and Roosters campaigns for the Telstra Premiership Grand Final at ANZ Stadium next Sunday (October 3) after both sides showed this weekend what a difference 12 months can make to qualify for the first all-Sydney decider since 2004.

The Dragons and Roosters were at opposite ends of the NRL ladder last year as minor premiers and wooden-spooners, but the Dragons were knocked out of the finals race in straight sets while the Roosters didn't even come close.

One year later, the Dragons have redeemed themselves and ended their 11-year wait for their second chance at their first title, while the Roosters have resurrected themselves, rising from last place in 2009 for a shot at their 13th Premiership.

The 2010 Grand Final series has highlighted how far they have come in 12 months as St George Illawarra ground out a 13-12 win over the Wests Tigers on Saturday night at ANZ Stadium and the Roosters thumped the Titans 32-6 on Friday night at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium to qualify for next Sunday's shot at glory.

In front of a combined total crowd of over 115,00 rugby league fans in Brisbane and Sydney this weekend, the Dragons and Roosters have set the stage for an enthralling Grand Final in what will be their 24th encounter since the formation of St George Illawarra in 1999 (Dragons - 14 wins, 1 draw, eight losses). As St George, the Dragons and Roosters last met in a Grand Final in 1975.

For the Dragons, the 2010 Grand Final offers them the chance to avenge the controversial loss to Melbourne Storm in their first and only finals appearance (as the merged St George Illawarra Dragons) in 1999; as well as their straight sets loss last year despite winning the Minor Premiership in their first season under six-time Premiership-winning coach Wayne Bennett; their second-last week finals exits in 2005 and 2006; and even shake off the unwanted "choker" tag.

While for the Roosters, the 2010 Grand Final marks a miraculous turnaround for the club and their Dally M winning five-eighth Todd Carney; and gives them the chance to become the first team since Western Suburbs in 1934 to go from wooden spooners to premiers the following season and finally end veteran coach Brian Smith's title drought.

Just 12 months ago Carney was completing his year-long exile from the NRL playing park football in far north Queensland (and losing their grand final) and the Roosters had “won” the wooden spoon, while off-field they had earned themselves the “Bondi bad boys” tag.

Already this season’s efforts have been recognised with their Dally M captain, coach overall and positional wins … but a 13th premiership for the club and the first for evergreen coach Brian Smith would be the ultimate dream come true.

“It’s a dream come true … I’ve never been a happier person in my whole life,” Carney told the Nine Network after the match.

Likewise, Dragons hooker Dean Young described the opportunity as a "dream come true" ... but no fairytale is without drama and both Carney and Young may hear from the Match Review Committee on Monday.

Carney was placed on report for a high tackle on Titans half Scott Prince in the 37th minute. Fortunately he has no carry-over baggage which could save him if he cops a low grade charge; but he will miss the Grand Final if he incurs more than 100 penalty points.

While Young was involved in a verbal clash with rival hooker Robbie Farah, with Young alleged to have made a racially derogatory remark. The NRL Match Review committee will investigate the incident as part of their normal review process.

NRL Telstra Premiership Grand Final Day Draw The draw for NRL Telstra Premiership Grand Final Day at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium is:

12pm: NSW Cup Grand Final: (Teams TBC Sunday, Sept 26)
2pm: Toyota Cup Grand Final: South Sydney Rabbitohs v New Zealand Warriors
5pm: NRL Telstra Premiership Grand Final: Sydney Roosters v St George Illawarra Dragons


Ticket Information

on Monday Ticketed Members of the Sydney Roosters and St George Illawarra Dragons will have first access to the final release of approximately 14,000 Grand Final tickets from 9am with any remaining tickets to be released for public sale from 9am Tuesday.

Tickets will be available through Ticketek on 132 849, at Ticketek outlets or online at www.ticketek.com.au. New Zealand customers can call 0800 842 538 or +61 132 849.

The draw for NRL Telstra Premiership Grand Final Day at Sydney’s ANZ Stadium is:

12pm: NSW Cup Grand Final: (Teams TBC tomorrow)
2pm: Toyota Cup Grand Final: South Sydney Rabbitohs v New Zealand Warriors
5pm: NRL Telstra Premiership Grand Final: Sydney Roosters v St George Illawarra Dragons


Each Ticketed Member of the Roosters and Dragons is entitled to purchase two tickets with each ticketed membership. Members can present multiple Ticketed Club Memberships to purchase a maximum of eight tickets.

The first allocation of Telstra Premiership Grand Final tickets that went on sale in late July sold out earlier this month with approximately 14,000 tickets across all categories held back for Ticketed Club Members of the NRL Grand Final teams.

Grand Final Ticket Categories and Prices

Category Adult Concession Family
1 $180.00 $140.00 $500.00
2 $135.00 $105.00 $375.00
3 $100.00 $75.00 $275.00
4 $60.00 $40.00 $160.00


- Concessions are available to full pensioners (Aged, War, TPI, Invalid & Disability) and juniors 4-15 years only
- Family passes consist of 2 adults and 2 juniors or 1 adult and 3 juniors only
- These prices are inclusive of GST and Ticketek booking fee.
- The NRL is affiliated with the Companion Card program. Patrons can contact the Ticketek Call Centre 132-849 or visit the Ticketek box office to book Tickets using a Companion Card.
- Prices are inclusive of GST. Ticketek may charge an additional transaction fee.