Rabbitohs centre, Bryson Goodwin, will return to his childhood home of Perth for the third successive season this weekend when the Rabbitohs take on the New Zealand Warriors in a Round 13 blockbuster at nib Stadium.
Goodwin moved to Perth with his family as a child after his father (former St George, Newtown and Wests great) ‘Lord’ Ted Goodwin, accepted a role with the Western Australian Rugby League before becoming involved with the now defunct Western Reds club, where Bryson was also the team ball-boy.
The annual trip West has proven to be a sentimental journey for Goodwin, who first played for the Rabbitohs in Perth in 2013 where he scored a double against the Warriors on the way to a 30-13 win.
“It’s my home-town – where I grew up, where I did all my school,” says a proud Goodwin.
“I moved over there when I was about three or four and lived there until I was about 16 and a half. Thats when I moved to Sydney. But yeah, I really love the place.”
Despite being far removed from the centre of Rugby League on the East Coast of Australia, the game was always going to be a part of the Goodwin family in Perth, with three of four of the Goodwin brothers following in their father’s footsteps by playing first-grade in the form of Luke (who represented the Reds), Bronx and Bryson.
“We always had videos and stuff of dad playing when we were kids,” says Bryson
“But the Reds were basically the first time that we had real football, or live football played in Perth and it was an important experience for us.
“We just got a feel for it and got to be a part of the atmosphere when it was live, and that’s why I still love watching live games now.”
The string Rugby League and Rabbitohs vibes have been evident in Perth in recent years, with a record nib Stadium crowd of 20,267 turning out for the corresponding 2014 fixture.
Goodwin’s men will come up against a Warriors outfit coming fresh off a 24-20 victory over Newcastle in Round 12, while the Rabbitohs themselves look to build on a hard-fought victory over the Gold Coast Titans.
“We got the win – it was a bit scrappy there at the end I think,” said Goodwin of his side’s last match.
“It’s better to be winning those games than losing them. Every game we go into we think we can win – if we do our best and play to our potential, we think that we can win.”
Click here to purchase your tickets to see the Rabbitohs take on the New Zealand Warriors at nib Stadium in Perth this Saturday, 3:30pm (local).