Damien Cook can’t be stopped as Blues shot beckons
DAMIEN Cook, by the break in this one, had run for 120m.
Which is something.
So extraordinary in fact, it really deserved to have been shouted by one of those Pommy darts announcers who just love hollerin' one-hun-dred-an-twen-teeeeee.
Not that it happened, of course.
But Cook, he kept running anyway.
From inside has quarter. At the tryline.
Better, too, was the way he covered said Allianz Stadium turf.
Travelling faster than bad news through Bellingen - population 3000 - the Bunnies No. 9 not only carved up the Roosters middle, but ran himself right into the thick of a NSW Origin debate.
Specifically, who wears the Blues No. 9?
And having already taken the Bunnies gig from Robbie Farah, what chance now his old Blues jersey?
Already, it has been suggested Manly rake Api Koroisau is favoured by NSW coach Brad Fittler.
With others in the mix including St George Illawarra's Cam McInnes, Origin incumbent Nathan Peats, plus Cook.
And, geez, you could do worse than the Helensburgh flyer.
A schoolboy beach sprint star - no surprises there - who initially moved with limited success through Penrith, St George Illawarra, even Canterbury before arriving at Redfern in 2016.
And even then, he played mainly behind McInnes.
Cook's lot looking little better the following year when, as McInnes headed off to the Dragons, Souths went and signed Farah.
AKA, NSW Origin incumbent.
So when Cookie told The Daily Telegraph that same summer how he was ready to make that Bunnies nine his own ... well, who didn't giggle just a little?
Arguably the fastest NRL footballer over 20m - and just on that, is there a promoter anywhere willing to splash enough cash to sort these debates once and for all? -- Cook burst several times from dummy-half to slice straight through the Roosters middle and away upfield.
In defence, too, he tackled everything that moved.
All up, producing enough energy to power the town of Bellingen for a couple of days, too.
Importantly, all this also came on a night when the Bunnies were without Sam Burgess.
And against arch rivals the Roosters.
That club with whom they boast a neighbourhood feud worthy of A Current Affair treatment.
Yet with Suspended Sam watching on, Cook carved.
Ditto the Englishman's younger brothers Tom and George.
Halfback Adam Reynolds was strong. Cody Walker, typically unpredictable.
While Johnny Sutton also scored a try and led the side for tackle busts.
Here was a win few outside The Burrow saw coming.
Still, the Bunnies got home anyway.
With the number that mattered most - outside the scoreline, anyway - belonging to Cook.
Metres made: 142.
Which matters when you consider Roosters No. 9 Jake Friend made just 32m. And Tricolours props Dylan Napa and Jared Waerea-Hargreaves 134m ... combined.