I have been very fortunate to watch some incredible sporting spectacles over the last 20 years but I have to say that sitting in The Kennel with the passionate Bulldogs fans to watch an amazing game of Football was truly special.
Bulldogs fans are a special breed (no pun intended), loud, proud and dedicated to their team through the good times and the bad times. They have a siege mentality that saw over fifteen thousand of them make the trip to Allianz Stadium and chant and scream their team to victory.
I sat in The Kennel because I wanted to share their experience, how they reacted, how they chanted how they come together as a group of people that often have nothing else in common apart from being Bulldog Fans! They are part of the Bulldog Family and wearing the Blue V is all you need to be welcomed into the family. Rich, poor, old, young, male, female, local or international – it doesn’t matter as long as you believe.
I had a very special night that was made even more special by a young female fan, Malake Darwiche. Malake asked me if she could have a photo with me and with both of us dressed in our Bulldog colours, we had a photo. She said thank you very much and we continued watching the game. After half time I felt a tap on my shoulder to find Malake standing there with 2 bars of Crunchie chocolate. Malake said to me “I bought these for you Raelene as I think you are doing a great job”. I was speechless and so appreciative and a young fan would take the time to share with me like that.
That is just one of the many great fan stories I could share since I have joined the Bulldog Family.
The streets of Belmore were alive on Saturday night as our fans came together to share their views on the game and celebrate their team and their Bulldogs family. Belmore will be a great experience for any sporting fan over the next week as you see how Rugby League brings communities together with a sense of pride and a shared passion.
I wish I could watch every Bulldogs game in The Kennel and what I know is that you all play a huge part in the Boys success. Keep up the chanting and the drumming, bring it all to ANZ on Saturday night. Live the highs and lows. It does make a difference.
I will never forget my night in The Kennel when we beat Manly by one point!! Thank you for letting me share it with you.