When Machon Samu thought about playing his 100th game for Moorabbin Rams last weekend against Box Hill he didn’t think it was such a big deal.
That was before he checked his phone which was flooded with messages wishing him well for the milestone.
“ I was pretty nervous as I was getting messages on my phone and on social media saying congratulations,” Samu explained.
“ I thought 100 games, oh okay it’s not too bad. But as I had heaps of people saying congratulations to me I felt like I had to make a stand in the game, I have got to perform and hopefully we get the win.”
The gods were smiling on Samu, as the Rams defeated Box Hill in a thrilling nine point win which meant they successfully secured third spot on the table, and more importantly Samu had a leading role to play in the win.
Samu, plucked the ball away from a Box Hill player and dotted down on the line in the dying minutes of the match to pretty much seal the win but after missing the conversion, the game was still very much in the balance.
Fortunately, he had a chance to redeem himself with pretty much the last play of the game when he nailed a penalty which further extended the Rams lead.
“ I was there at the right time,” Samu said about the try.
“He [the Box Hill player] had the ball exposed and one of my teammates had his leg and I knew he was trying to offload it, so I took the strip and it went on the ground.
“I thought the ref was going to call a knock-on ... so when I got over the line I was stoked especially in front of my friends and family. It was an awesome feeling, it was like a fairy-tale finish.”
It hasn’t been all plain sailing though, having experienced many setbacks and injuries. Samu was at one point thinking of giving the game away, but that option was never considered because of the support from his family and wife, Kara.
“At the time when I did my injury, I thought I’d give it up and thought I would retire,” he said.
“I sort of kept going because of my partner Kara, she loved the club, she loved watching me play and I wanted my kids to see me play.
“So those are the things that got me through the injuries - my family and my son.”
“My wife Kara, she helped me through all the way just to get me through those barriers and it really helped heaps, it just made everything real easy.”
Now attentions turn to the weekend where the Rams return to the finals in the Dewar Shield after a six year absence.
It won’t be easy though as the Rams will be facing off against Powerhouse.
“It’s going to be tough,” he said.
“I haven’t really played much finals footy, it’s been a while since we have been there. It’s awesome to have Moorabbin come up and play finals again.
“I know it’s going to be tough this weekend but we’ll be ready for it and hopefully we can get the win.”
Updated 09:52 - 3 Aug 2018 by Fraser Stewart