If matches between the Sharks and Sea Eagles needed any more spice, the two clubs were requiring any more incentive, then playing for a piece of silverware honouring a former great of the game may just provide it.
The Sharks and Sea Eagles, opponents in the 1973 and 1978 Grand Finals and ever since engaged in a tense and competitive rivalry, will play for the Steve Rogers Memorial Trophy at PointsBet Stadium on Sunday in a round 10 Telstra Premiership clash.
A Sharks immortal, Rogers tragically passed away in January of 2006, with the two clubs coming together to honour his memory by playing annually for the trophy cast in his name.
A first grader player at 18 and a member of the 1973 Grand Final side that same year, Rogers went on to play 202 top grade games, leading the Sharks in the Grand Final and Grand Final replay in 1978 against Manly.
He represented NSW 21 times, Australia on 24 occasions, was a Rothman’s Medallist, Dally M Player of the Year and was named as one of Australia's 100 Greatest Players (1908–2007) in a list commissioned by the NRL and ARL to celebrate the code's centenary year.
With many good friends at Manly, Bob Fulton, Max Krilich and Paul McCabe among them, friendships made through his time in Kangaroo touring teams, the idea of the Steve Rogers Memorial Trophy came to fruition and the first match was played in March 2006.
Since that inaugural game the trophy was put up each time the teams met up, until the end of the 2010 season, where it was since been contested just once a season at the current holders’ home ground should the teams be drawn to play each other twice.
However, in May 2016 Manly and Cronulla agreed to return to the original format of playing for the trophy each time the two clubs met to coincide with the 10th anniversary of Steve's passing.
Manly has won 17 of the 21 matches played for the Steve Rogers Memorial Trophy.
Steve’s son Don is expected to be in attendance at PointsBet Stadium on Sunday to present the trophy to the winning captain.
The Sharks v Sea Eagles match kicks off at 4.05pm.
Steve Rogers Memorial Trophy
Matches played 21: Manly 17, Cronulla 4
2018, Rd 21: Manly 33 d Cronulla 32
2017, Rd 16: Manly 35 d Cronulla 18
2016, Rd 3: Manly 22 d Cronulla 12, Rd 11: Cronulla 20 d Manly 12
2015, Rd 26: Manly 14 d Cronulla 12; Rd 17, Manly 28 d Cronulla 16.
2014, Rd 6: Manly 24 d Cronulla 4, Rd 15: Manly 26 d Cronulla 0
2013, Rd 6: Manly 25 d Cronulla 18; SF: Manly 24 d Cronulla 18
2012, Rd 3: Cronulla 17 d Manly 14
2011, Rd 5: Manly 19 d Cronulla 13
2010, Rd 5: Manly 40 d Cronulla 12; Rd 19: Manly 48 d Cronulla 18
2009, Rd 19: Manly 32 d Cronulla 26: Rd 25: Manly 18 d Cronulla 16
2008, Rd 1: Cronulla 16 d Manly 10, Rd 18: Manly 34 d Cronulla 6
2007, Rd 19: Manly 29 d Cronulla 22
2006, Rd 3: Manly 20 d Cronulla 18, Rd 16 Cronulla 15 d Manly 12