Will Chambers was never shy of offering his opponents a word of advice or two but a few years ago his sledging backfired and may have cost Melbourne a premiership.
The former Storm centre, who now plays rugby union in Japan, was at his provocative best during the final round of the 2016 season when his side dusted Cronulla 26-6.
But he shouldn’t have been so cocky during the comfortable win because those two teams would meet again a few weeks later in that year’s grand final, but with a very different result.
The Sharks beat Melbourne 14-12 in the decider to claim their maiden premiership and former Cronulla captain Paul Gallen has revealed the sledging he and his teammates copped from Chambers and Co. gave them added motivation in the most important game of their lives.
"Melbourne smashed us (in) Round 26. That was for the minor premiership, whoever won were minor premiers," Gallen said on Wide World of Sports' The Captain and Coach.
"It was a pretty brutal game, to be honest with you. They had hammered us, they totally dominated us, verbally as well as physically.
"Will Chambers was at his best, there was plenty of them at their best, verbally.
"I remember at the end of the game, I sat in the change rooms … and I said to (Sharks hooker Michael) Ennis, 'I would do anything to play them blokes in a grand final. I'd do anything'."
Will Chambers knew how to get under rival players’ skin.Source:AAP
Gallen got his wish, and the rest is history.
"Sure enough, we played them in the grand final. Then when that week came about, you sort of think to yourself, 'Ooh, you've sometimes you've got to be careful what you wish for'," Gallen said.
"You want to play them again because you want to give it to them and beat them in a grand final.”
Chambers’ acid tongue was well known around the league. Last year, South Sydney back and Chambers’ former Queensland Origin teammate Dane Gagai anointed the centre the No. 1 sledger in the game.
“Will Chambers, I actually think he does homework and studies players on some little things about what he can say to them and how he can get under their skin,” Gagai told news.com.au.
“He loves a good sledge, he’d be the number one.
“I know the type of person he (Chambers) is and how he loves sledging people.”
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