Stunning new details have come to light about the incredible personal sacrifice that Mitchell Moses made to help Parramatta qualify for their first grand final in 13 years.
On Friday, the Eels halfback became a dad for the first time, with the 28-year-old making the brutally tough call to play in his side's preliminary final win over the Cowboys in Townsville, rather than fly back to Sydney for the birth of his daughter.
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Moses's partner Bri Gardoni went into labour on Thursday evening, before giving birth to the couple's first child - a daughter named Aspyn - on the Friday of the finals match.
The Eels star revealed that he met his daughter on FaceTime hours before his side's 24-20 victory over the Cowboys, that set up a grand final showdown with Penrith.
Moses has since opened up about the difficult decision he made to stay with the team in Townsville, after coach Brad Arthur had told him to be with his partner in Sydney.
“I can’t leave these boys," Moses told the Sydney Morning Herald about his personal sacrifice.
“(Brad) said, ‘what are you doing here? Get out of here’.
“I just looked at him and said, ‘I can’t’.
“I can’t leave these boys here given how hard we’ve worked all year.
“He addressed all the boys in the sheds and let everyone know I’d had my first child over FaceTime about an hour ago.
“It was a pretty special moment. All the boys got around me and I felt very comfortable on the field."
Moses says Aspyn was not due to arrive until this week when he would have been in Sydney and able to be there for her birth.
Parramatta's halfback says he "would have loved" to have been there when his daughter was welcomed into the world but has made peace with his decision.
The Eels half said his partner Bri was not best pleased about the timing but understood his predicament.
"She was a bit filthy at the start... but she understood. She's supported me through everything," Moses said about his partner.
"She's seen how much work I put in this year to be in the position that we're in.
"I have a family now - all this is for them."
Parramatta coach praises Mitch Moses' sacrifice
Eels coach Brad Arthur - who had been under pressure to get his side to the decider - made special mention of Moses' sacrifice after the game.
“It’s good, I’m really happy for the boys – we made a lot of sacrifices along the way,“ Arthur said in the post-match press conference.
“Mitchell Moses made a massive sacrifice for his teammates today and over the last couple of days. He didn’t get to see the birth of his daughter – that’s huge.
“It was never really a process or a thought for him – we got on the plane yesterday, Bri was close the other day and I spoke to him today and I said ‘we will send you home’.
“I don’t want to be rude, because the birth of his new daughter is so important to him and his family, but the other part of his family is his mates.
“At least we made sure it was worth it.”
Parramatta's preliminary final win over the Cowboys capped off a tumultuous week for Moses, whose family also laid his grandmother to rest days before.
Moses knows there would be no greater way to cap his wild fortnight than for Parramatta to win their first title in 36 years.
Claiming he was reasonably well rested despite the past few days, Moses has waited since his years as a childhood Parramatta fan to see the Eels win a premiership.
Like every other player, he was not alive for their last one in 1986.
And for now, the Eels' hopes rest largely on his boot.
He was Parramatta's best when he kicked the Panthers to submission in round nine with 777 metres, making Penrith regularly return the ball out of their own end.
On that night he arguably outplayed Nathan Cleary, something that will need to be done again for Parramatta to stand any chance of claiming the premiership.
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