Sharks prop Andrew Fifita during the 2016 grand final.

Fifita has the final say

Cronulla prop Andrew Fifita's tumultuous six weeks now has one big positive following his match-winning try in the Sharks' 14-12 grand final victory over the Melbourne Storm.

 

Fifita's 69th-minute try added to an overall barnstorming performance which included a double century of metres and 35 tackles. 

His well-documented dramas were temporarily offset by the Sharks' first premiership in the club's 50-year history. 

"It's been a tough six weeks but I don't listen to outside noise. This team has been really positive for me," Fifita said. 

"I block everything out by staying positive. When you go out to play 80 minutes of football, nothing else in the world matters apart from football."

Fifita did just that. 

While the Clive Churchill Medal wouldn't have looked out of place around his neck, Fifita claimed that nobody deserved it more than Luke Lewis. 

All that mattered was the premiership ring on his little finger.

 


"We just made history. To be in this squad that won the first ever grand final for the Cronulla Sharks and to score the last try is just amazing. It speaks for itself," he said.

"I looked at 'Mickie' (retiring Sharks hooker Michael Ennis), he gave me the nod. I gave him the nod back. I reached out for it and right at the end I kind of just spun in the right direction thankfully and I slammed it down. 

"I have my ring now. I'm stoked we have created history and at the end of the day I had the final say."

Fifita was lucky enough to share the "greatest night of his career" with twin brother David.

David played the Sharks' first two games of the season before his mid-season move to English Super League outfit Wakefield Trinity. 

"I told my brother to get in amongst it and live it up. He pretty much jumped over the security guard and pretty much took me out. He was just so happy," Fifita laughed. 

"My entire family were in disbelief that I won it. His first words to me were 'go get that ring, and come back and show me'. 

"To have everyone there from my wife, family, friends and cousins – I'll never forget this day in my life."

With the Kangaroos' Four Nations squad to be named on Monday afternoon, Fifita was unsure if he'll make his first Australian team since the 2013 World Cup final. 

"I haven't even thought about it. If it's meant to be, it's meant to be," he said.

"I've never let that jersey down. I played in all six games at the World Cup and never let the team down. 

"To get an Australian jersey back would be a massive honour."