CLANCY OVERELL | Editor | CONTACT
An Auckland-born Western Sydney resident of Samoan heritage has quite a lot to think about this weekend.
For Kingswood school teacher, Koa Smith (30), the September sporting calendar has blessed him with one of the most emotionally draining two days of his adult life.
With his beloved Penrith Panthers taking on his beloved ‘second team’ The New Zealand Warriors in the first week of NRL finals at Penrith’s Bluebet stadium this Saturday, Koa must choose between his birthplace, his hometown and his heritage.
“I mean I’ve cheered the Panthers to three grand finals” he says.
“But I was born in New Zealand and I definitely admit to getting caught up in all of this ‘Up The Wahs’ stuff”
“It’s very stressful that this match is happening in Penrith too bro”
As a Samoan-Australian, Koa has no option but to simply count the amount of Samoans in both sides, and cheer accordingly.
“That’s where my loyalties lie. I guess.”
“But again, maybe not”
“Imagine if the Panthers got three premierships in a row”
“But then, like, imagine if the Warriors won their first. Fuck man. I dunno”
However, this season-deciding showdown between two football teams in the NRL isn’t the only historic moment for Samoan-Australians this weekend.
“Bro we’ve got four usos fighting in the UFC on Sunday as well. Two from Penrith and two from Auckland. Well, Tafa is technically from Logan, but that’s the Auckland of Australia anyway”
“And then we’ve got Izzy fighting too. He’s basically one of us now too”
“Best case scenario is every one of the boys win their fights and the Panthers and Warriors tie in gold point. That’s the only way I’m getting any sleep this weekend. Either way, I can’t imagine I’ll be going to work on Monday”
“I really am quite overwhelmed here uce”