Mary Kaye welcomes us back from the bye with her weekly Ladies Who League column, talking Membership, injuries, New Zealand and #oneinarow. Find more of her work at ladieswholeague.com.
Whenever the Parramatta Eels have the bye, I always feel like something is missing from my weekend. Whilst it is always good to get a guaranteed two points, it's never the same as putting on my Parramatta Eels scarf, heading out to Pirtek Stadium and joining my Parramatta Eels family to help cheer on the team.
The community feel of being a member is just one of the reasons why my Parramatta Eels membership is something I would never give up. I sit in Bay 50 and the people that sit around me very quickly become my family for the duration of the NRL season. We are all so passionate about the Eels and get such tremendous joy from watching the boys play every week. It's something I think is very special.
This week we have a tough game ahead of us. The Warriors are one of the dark horses of this year's competition and always play well in front of their home crowd. However, the Eels have proved time and time again this year that they are not a team to be underestimated and I have no doubt, following a disappointing last 2 rounds that the boys will be hungry to cement their spot in the top 8.
I'm looking for Willie Tonga to step up as he has been named captain for the weekend. We should also be looking to the likes of Chris Sandow, Semi Radradra, Isaac De Gois, Darcy Lussick and Corey Norman to lead the way.
At the moment, the Eels sit just outside the top 8 based on for and against, so we have a couple of very important weeks coming up as September creeps closer.
On another note, I hope everyone has enjoyed this year's State of Origin season. As a proud Blues fan, I am still not tired of tweeting #oneinarow. The Blues should be very proud of what they have been able to achieve this year.
I have especially enjoyed watching Jarryd Hayne play this series as he has demonstrated what a talent he is and how much State of Origin success means to him. Now that he has won a State of Origin series, hopefully the next item on his NRL bucket list is winning an Eels Premiership!
All the very best to the boys this weekend - hopefully we can leave New Zealand warm and with the 2 points! I also just wanted to make mention of my brother who is currently living in New Zealand. He will be at the game, flying the flag for my family.
Finally, I also wanted to extend my best wishes to Lee Mossop who this week announced that he will need shoulder surgery and will not be playing for the remainder of the season. We wish Lee all the best in his recovery and look forward to seeing him in the Blue and Gold next year.