Hometown hero Fifita "shocked" by trophy honour

Rugby league

IT was the competition that helped propel him to rugby league superstardom and it now bears his very name.

Proud local product Andrew Fifita says he is still coming to terms with the honour of having the Griffith All-Schools cup named after him.

The Bulldogs-bound forward was in his beloved hometown on Thursday to hand the newly-minted trophy onto competition winners Griffith High, who smashed Marian 50-0 at EW Moore Oval to take out the prestigious title.

Fifita might have a mortgage on front-row positions with both NSW and Australia, and he might have just signed a contract that will make him the richest prop in the game's history.

But for a man who takes great pride in his very humble beginnings, the Andrew Fifita Cup has become one of the biggest honours of his career - and, like all the others, a "shock" he never saw coming.

"I've got my own cup now and it's a shock. I never thought I'd be this big," he told The Area News.

"It's going to be close to my heart now.

"I would have come down here no matter what, even if I was playing on Saturday.

"Just to give back to the community is a privilege and it's an honour just to be known as a kid's hero or idol."

Running his eye over the cream of the city's rugby league stocks, Fifita singled out a few youngsters for special praise - including Griffith High's David Buturoko and Marian's Peter Schembri, who battled hard in a losing side.

"I'd really like to help (Schembri) get a gig in rep footy," Fifita said.

"I think he's an outstanding player. There's a few of them in this game and they're all playing their hearts out.

"When I was playing school footy I had a few scouts come up to me and say 'who do you play for, what do you do?'

"They ended up bringing me to Sydney to have a go. 

"That's what school footy can do for you. It's a stepping stone into the NRL or the under 20s competition."

Fifita's cousin, Country NSW representative Shorne Ngu, was awarded the Ray Brown Medal for the competition's best player - just one point ahead of Wade's Nelson Twigg.

In the under 16s, Griffith High won the Bonetti Family Shield after winning 40-6, while Jermaine Cook took out the Simon Bonetti medal.

Meanwhile, Wade High were handed the league tag title having already stitched up the competition with wins over Griffith High and Marian in the first two rounds.

TOO GOOD: Griffith High's open rugby league team celebrates their Andrew Fifita Cup win on Thursday night.

TOO GOOD: Griffith High's open rugby league team celebrates their Andrew Fifita Cup win on Thursday night.


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