Souths flyer Alex Johnston had the post match press conference in stitches after scoring a hat-trick to overtake Nathan Merritt as the Rabbitohs’ all-time leading try-scorer.
Johnston scored three in the 44-18 win over the Tigers, but he was more excited at being at his first press conference after the game in a hilarious answer to his first question.
“I just think it is special to be part of the press conference mate after the game,” Johnston said.
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“I mean this is unbelievable. This is so cool.
“No, I said it earlier to the fans I’m still pinching myself. I don’t want to play in any other colors and to score 147 in the red and green it means a lot to me and my family.
“I’m just speechless at the moment.”
It was revealed Johnston personally thanked Souths fans after the game after they started a petition to keep him at the club when he was nearly let go a couple of years ago.
“Obviously we all know what happened a few years ago, I was almost not here,” Johnston said.
“There was a petition going around and a lot of fans signed and I like to think the top dogs had a look at that and saw we might need to keep this block.
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“I’m very thankful for the fans for doing that and it all worked out as you can see. I’m just so happy.
“I think I’ve got plenty more tries to go hopefully touch wood to pay them back.”
Johnston revealed he looked up to the man he passed in Merritt, who was at the club when he started back in 2014.
“For sure, when I came to the club he was next to me in the locker room,” Johnston said when asked if he looked up to Merritt.
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“Him and Greg Inglis and I was in between them. I thought this is crazy.
“Two Indigenous blocks and that’s another thing. What a night to do it as well in this jersey.
“I don’t think I will take it off. I will keep this jersey on for a week at least.
“I looked up to Merritt. I looked up to GI and to break his record tonight is very special.”
However, Johnston would not be drawn on if he had plans to chase down Ken Irvine’s record of 212 first grade tries.
“Yeah no let’s not put the mocker on aye,” Johnston said.
“Just one game at a time, keep ticking them over and whatever happens.
“I’m just so happy to be sitting here right now at this press conference. Look at this.”
The 27-year-old winger who has taken just 178 games to break the record admitted it was a relief to put the talk surrounding the record behind him
“It was getting a bit annoying,” Johnston said.
“I sort of just wanted to not think about it. You guys did your best to keep reminding me every time I spoke to you so thanks for that.
“But it is good to finally get over the hump and get it done and hopefully we keep playing like a team like we did tonight and I will score more tries if we are flying.”
Johnston shared a hilarious final anecdote on Campbell Graham, who passed him the ball for the record breaking try.
“I knew and Campbell Graham inside me knew as well,” Johnston said.
“When he passed me the ball for the last try he just started screaming history! History! Record!
“I think he was more pumped than I was. It just goes to show the type of team and teammates we have. We all care and love each other and I’m just so thankful to be a part of it.”