To Be The Greatest: Shaun Berrigan
These are some of the great action snapshots that have made the NRL Finals so memorable, with each and every one etched into Rugby League’s rich folklore.
Keep coming back as NRL.com takes a trip down memory lane to remember some of the greatest moments in NRL Finals.
Shaun Berrigan’s try in the 2006 Preliminary Final turned the game on its head – and it left the star on his head, too.
Opponents Canterbury dominated the opening half of play and headed to the break with a comfortable 20-6 lead.
There was more cause for concern for Broncos fans in the 45th minute when Bulldogs halfback Brent Sherwin placed a perfectly weighted kick into the corner of the Brisbane in-goal, where centre Justin Hodges was waiting.
Confronted with a ring of four defenders, Hodges picked up the ball and started running across field, skipping out of two tackles on his own 10-metre line.
Suddenly Hodges found himself in open space; sizing up his options while running between defenders, he linked with Berrigan on the 30-metre line with a flat ball.
Berrigan was away, with five Bulldogs defenders in hot pursuit. He bumped off a one-on-one tackle attempt and quickly regained his stride with 25 metres left to run.
A desperate lunge from Hazem El Masri proved in vain, but Willie Mason managed to grab hold of Berrigan as the white stripe – and also the sideline – loomed.
Berrigan managed to do enough to keep Mason from bundling him into touch and as momentum carried him towards the tryline, his body now contorted upside down, Berrigan somehow kept the ball off the ground and planted it down for a truly memorable NRL Finals try.
It was as brilliant as it was spectacular – and the game was literally turned on its head.
The Broncos would go on to score 31 unanswered points and win the clash 37-20. A week later they were the 2006 NRL Premiers.
It all started with Hodges’ run... and Berrigan’s amazing finish.