To be the Greatest: Andrew Ryan
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.
Talk about a nail-biting finish: The Bulldogs led the Roosters16-13 with 20 seconds remaining in the 2004 NRL Grand Final. With the ball in hand the tricolours were looking for one last play to steal the game – and the premiership – at the death.
Captain Brad Fittler passed the ball to Craig Wing, who linked with Brett Finch. Finch found Michael Crocker steaming onto the ball and hitting a hole which threatened to put him through the Bulldogs’ defence.
That was until second-rower Andrew Ryan came across in cover and completed a perfect tackle that brought Crocker down before he could get going. The tackle left Crocker sprawling on the ground, with the impact jolting the ball free.
As quickly as the opportunity had been created, it had been ended by a great covering tackle.
The ball was dropped and the Bulldogs had won the Grand Final.
Who knows what could have happened had Ryan not arrived in time to make the tackle?