A turf-war is brewing! With Randwick City Council preparing to fly red and green Rabbitohs banners on Coogee Beach’s Arden Street during the NRL finals series – Rabbitohs territory – arch-rivals the Sydney Roosters claim that it should be their banners flying in the proud Rabbitohs area.
But now, you can have your say in the matter, with Randwick City Mayor, Scott Nash, determined to find out once and for all, who owns Coogee Beach by leaving it up to you!
“Arden Street in Coogee runs right along Coogee Beach and is declared by the NRL as officially Rabbitohs territory," Mayor Nash said.
"We've complied with this ruling and have flown Rabbitohs banners there, but a growing number of Roosters players and supporters tell us they want their banners in Coogee as they have strong historic links to the area,” Mayor Nash said.
“To settle this debate once and for all, I am declaring a turf-war and putting it out to the people to cast their vote. We need residents, ratepayers, club members, players and footy fans across the state to have their say and tell us officially if they think Coogee Beach belongs to the Rabbitohs or the Roosters.
“Once we know what the people think, we’ll let the NRL know as well. This is a chance to sort this disputed territory out once and for all,” Mayor Nash said.
Under official NRL boundary lines, Coogee Beach is South Sydney Rabbitohs territory, but Sydney Roosters supporters disagree. For Rabbitohs players such as Coogee-Randwick Wombats Junior, Jason Clark, Coogee is undisputed Rabbitohs territory.
“Coogee is definitely South Sydney,” Clark told Rabbitohs.com.au.
“I grew up playing for (Coogee-Randwick) Wombats in the Souths Juniors competition, and there’s also another proud Souths Juniors club in Coogee – the Dolphins. So I’m happy to say it’s ours.”
Clark isn’t alone in being a Coogee product, with Rabbitohs skipper John Sutton also having graduated to the Rabbitohs from the Coogee-Randwick club.
In addition to the strong Souths Junior base rooted in the Coogee area, Clark added that there are many visible signs that Coogee bleeds red and green.
“We see quite a bit of merchandise down there with hats and bumper stickers and the whole lot – Souths boardies down there on the beach,” said Clark of the wealth of support.
As part of the voting system, Rabbitohs Members and supporters have the opportunity to claim Rabbitohs turf by voting on whether Rabbitohs banners should be flown on; Arden St on Coogee Beach, Anzac Parade and Todman Ave in Kensington, Clovelly Beach, and Alison Park in Randwick.
• Tweet or Instagram with the hastag #turfwar
• View the official NRL Rabbitohs/Roosters boundary in Randwick City