It’s one of the most prestigious awards on offer at the Dubbo Kangaroos and Pat Saul described it as a “big honour” to be awarded the Rivwest Finance Perpetual Trophy for 2017.
Saul was given the prize by Rivwest’s Bob Elliot last week after the youngster finished off his career within the Kangaroos junior ranks.
An award which focuses less on the on-field efforts, the Rivwest prize is given to a player in their final year of under 17s who fulfils criteria relating to leadership, sportsmanship and citizenship.
“This is a very big honour. I wasn’t really expecting it and then on presentation day they said my name and I was very honoured.” Saul said.
It marks the second time a Saul has won the prize in recent years after Pat’s brother, Thomas, collected the trophy in 2014.
“I finally get to have something in common with my brother too,” the younger Saul laughed.
While it wasn’t a perfect farewell from juniors for Saul and his under 17s teammates, they were forced to watch fierce rivals Dubbo Rhinos and the Narromine Gorillas play out an enthralling grand final, it was still a memorable one.
Finishing his junior career alongside a bunch of close mates was what stood out to Saul.
“We didn’t have the most successful season but it was good to play with the boys and it’s good just playing my junior rugby with the club here,” he said, before speaking more about the Roos.
“They’re really tight and close and everyone’s treated as family so it’s really good.”
While Saul was a useful outlet for his side on the park, he also got through plenty of work off it.
The trophy is awarded to a player who helps foster young footballers, values opinions within the team and club, contributes to the team and his club both on and off the field while also being involved in off-field activities and acting as a informal ambassador for the Dubbo Kangaroos club,
Lending a hand on and off the field in numerous roles, the work Saul did didn’t go unnoticed.
“It really does (mean a lot to be noticed). I hadn’t really done much of it the last few years but now I’ve been reffing, working at the canteen and have been doing stuff since I was in the sub-juniors as well and working with Dad so it’s great to be noticed,” he said.
Saul’s father, Kevin, is a proud rugby man and was on hand to see his son presented with the award by Elliot last week.
“He’s always proud. The only thing he isn’t proud of is that I’m a back not a forward,” the younger Saul laughed.
Saul is all set to now move into the Kangaroos colts next season.