From inaugural winner Peter Sterling to Allan Langer, Andrew Johns, Darren Lockyer and Greg Inglis, the medal has always attracted great interest.
Storm and Panthers players will go to sleep on Saturday night and dream of Premier League glory. Some will complement their ideal scenario as recipients of the CIive Churchill Medal.
Will a player get the award from a winning side, or will there be a repeat of the years Badley Clyde, Brad Mackay, Daly Cherry-Evans and Jack Wighton were recognized after strong performances on losing teams?
Everything will be announced shortly after full-time on Sunday evening.
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Steve Renouf (Maroons Legend)
Cameron Smith will host a master class in what is likely the last game of his career. I support him to lead his team to another big final victory and to be judged as a player of the game.
Jamie Soward (2010 Premier Winner)
Jahrome Hughes. He was brilliant last week. If Penrith averted his gaze from him and focused on the other three (Munster, Smith and Papenhuyzen), he could have a great night.
Alicia Newton (NRL.com-Reporterin)
Isaah Yeo has had an outstanding season and it wouldn’t be surprising if he finished with the medal around his neck after the second half rise against the Rabbitohs last week.
Paul Suttor (NRL.com Editor)
Nothing that James Fisher-Harris Deeds on the field might be labeled “pretty,” but it’s always pretty effective – you can lock it in now that he’s doing a mountain of tackles and lots of hits, so if he can just do a nice little line break or settle in one attempt could attract the judges’ attention.
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Cameron Smith has had an incredible season this year, leading a team that mastered significant challenges for the grand finale. He made some groundbreaking games last weekend and I expect the same commitment this weekend.
Big closing narratives tend to shape many of the Clive Churchill Medal decisions, so it’s a surprise too Cameron Smith in what is likely his last Storm appearance or Nathan Cleary after he was narrowly beaten in the Dally M vote, don’t take it out. I’ll go with Smith and win a storm.
Dan Walsh (NRL.com-Reporter)
Cameron Munster. Cam Smith will control the competition if Melbourne is to win it, but Munster will be the one to break it wide. Twice as much as in 2018, when everything went wrong on the big final day – a serious motivation for one of the NRL’s most competitive animals.
Brad Walter (Senior Reporter at NRL.com)
Nathan Cleary missed the Dally M, but he will make it up to it by winning the Clive Churchill Medal after leading Penrith to her first premiere since 2003.
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Joel Gould (NRL.com-Reporter)
Cameron Munster He already has the Clive Churchill medal in his sights and should win it with a typically dominant performance in fifth and eighth place. Look for Munster to take the line against the Panthers and assert your authority.
Chris Kennedy (NRL.com-Reporter)
I tipped the storm to win the game so I’m tipping Cameron Smith to end his career with a fairy tale and add the last trophy missing in his overcrowded closet.
Troy Whittaker (NRL.com-Reporter)
Ryan Papenhuyzen. The Livewire Storm full-back will break into the grand finale and be crowned best on the ground. He’s had a fantastic season and hopefully the best for him is yet to come.
Margie McDonald (Senior Reporter at NRL.com)
Jarome Luai. Halves have a pretty high hit rate for the Clive Churchill – even if they’re on the losing side (think Jack Wighton, Daly Cherry-Evans). Luai’s ad lib soccer and contagious energy make him a prime candidate.
Martin Lenehan (Senior Journalist at NRL.com)
Cameron SmithThe man who has stood tall on the big stage countless times will lead Melbourne to yet another premiere and add a Clive Churchill medal to his already bulging trophy cabinet. Smith’s cunning and experience will surpass the panther’s youthful exuberance.
Nathan Cleary was the best halfback and most consistent player of the season and I expect his form will continue by icing the big moments in the decision. The Panthers halfback has risen to every challenge over the course of the year, and I expect he’ll take on the occasion on the game’s biggest stage.
Kenny Scott (Podcaster NRL.com)
Cameron Smith will conclude his retirement tour with the ultimate quinella; a Premier League and the Clive Churchill Medal. He’s the game’s greatest player. It is his (potential) endgame. Enough said.
The views in this article do not necessarily reflect the views of the NRL, ARL commission, NRL clubs, or state associations.
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