Josh Gerrard: Why I really hate Manly a lot

READ – Andrew Harvey: Why I hate Warringah 

Firstly, I’d just like to thank Andrew for spending half of his article complaining about the weather. It was equally as exciting as every other time I’ve heard somebody complain about the weather.

Secondly, I want to be fair to Andy, who I don’t know but is now my mortal enemy, and say he’s right on some things.

Sometimes it can get a bit chilly at Rat Park, where this weekend’s instalment of the greatest rugby derby in the world will be held.

And sure, we might talk slowly and drive even slower, but why rush when there’s nowhere else you’d rather be?

Rat Park does have it upsides, too, like being able to watch the game without a high-powered telescope. Buzz Aldrin had a better view than my Dad for the 1969 derby at Manly Oval and Dad was sitting in row B.

I’m certain I’ve seen Gordon supporters – flat out, no kidding Gordon supporters – come to Manly Oval for a derby match, watch the whole game and then leave without having any idea their team wasn’t even on the field.

They were further off course than a Sam Lane field goal in a grand final.

Rat Park is also typically jam-packed with terrific people. Our Hillbillies are world famous for their hospitality. No matter where you are on the field, they’ll make sure to let you know you’re welcome and pass on some well-crafted thoughts about your play.

Contrast that to Manly fans, who I’m reliably informed are the kinds of people who put their bags on the outside of the seat on the bus just so you can’t sit down.

A lesser known fact about the Rats is our biodiversity. At a time when they are critically endangered, Warringah have actually increased our turtle population this year, while Manly’s are now extinct.

They’ve taken that really well though.

The sign they made at the first derby was the best I’d seen down that way since “Manly Oval Car Park – Coming Soon”.

Really, though, that’s why these two clubs will go to battle this weekend and why we’ll all care so much.

We’re each at our own end of the Peninsula and we wouldn’t have it any other way. We defend our turf.

It fell to me to write this article about “why I hate Manly”. My first thought was that “hate is a strong word.” My second thought though, was that it wasn’t “strong enough and I’d better change the headline”.

There are also a few different versions that could be told. The short version can’t be printed. The long version … Well, we’d need to book out an entire afternoon at the Dee Why Hotel to cover that.

So I just decided to do my best impression of a Hamish Angus match-winning, sideline conversion and split it right down the middle.

Because at the end of the day, all I know is blokes with names like Holmes, Feltscheer, Howell, Reid and Scognamiglio will be having a dead set go on Saturday. They’ll be wearing one green one, one white one and one with a little flower on, and they’ll be playing against a bunch of guys in blue who are a long way from home.

Let’s go you Ratties, we’ve got bigger fish to fry. Oh yeah!

Josh Gerrard
Warringah 4th Grade flyhalf