Die-hard Raiders fan tips his way to grand final
FOR Chris Bunyoung, going to watch his team play in the NRL grand final was a dream come true.
It had been 24 long years since his team, the Canberra Raiders, last won a premiership, so to be able to go to the grand final at Sydney's ANZ Stadium was an emotional experience for the long-time Raiders supporter.
The Fairbairn Bakery owner won tickets to the grand final as part of a Sydney package after tipping the most winners in this year's Whitsunday Times Local Gurus Footy Tipping Competition.
After making 123 correct tips, he finished two clear of Whitsunday Vogue Interiors' Zach Hoffman to claim the winner's prize worth more than $6000.
Mr Bunyoung said the fact his team did so well this year was probably part of the reason he excelled in the tipping competition.
"Usually I follow my heart a bit too much (with my tips),” he said.
However, he admitted he didn't always tip his team to take the wins throughout the season, opting for their opponents four or five times.
"Sometimes you've got to be smart about it,” he said.
Mr Bunyoung took his wife Kelly with him on his winning tip that included accommodation in Sydney, a river cruise to the grand final with former NRL players and the grand final tickets themselves.
Mr Bunyoung said it was an "unbelievable” experience.
"I did shed a tear,” he said.
"It was a dream come true. Every year I hope for it (the Raiders to make the final), and I got to go.”
This was not the first year Mr Bunyoung has won the Times tipping competition, in fact he has won it three out of the six years he has entered.
It is a hobby he enjoys.
"It's the main thing of my week,” he said.
"Every Thursday morning I run out and grab the paper and look at the tips.”