Amid the intensity and chaos of a clash between the Warriors and Gold Coast Titans which went down to the wire last weekend, there were two players who in some respects had already won the battle just by being on the field.
On Sunday afternoon Warriors playmaker Kieran Foran and Titans forward Chris Grevsmuhl were running, tackling and smiling reminders of why we all love rugby league: because it's fun.
The pair made their first appearance back after time away from the game dealing with personal issues, and reflected post-match on the experience.
"Back doing something I love, I really enjoy playing rugby league and it's something that I have missed over the past 12 months, so it's great to be back out there," Foran said following the Warriors' 28-22 win.
"It was just great to be out there with the boys, it's been hard sitting on the sideline for the first few rounds."
Ten months on from his last outing on a footy field, Foran's return to the NRL Telstra Premiership couldn't have gone much better, with the 26-year-old running for 123 metres, making two line breaks and scoring a crucial try inside the final 20 minutes.
"I was just excited, it was mixed emotions for me, I was really happy, I was able to reflect a little bit after that try and just take in something that I have really missed.
"That great feeling when you are able to cross the line for your side."
For Grevsmuhl, who was released from his contract with the Penrith Panthers in November last year, it was the simple enjoyment of taking the field with a group of mates which stood out.
The 24-year-old was signed by the Titans last month after spending much of the off-season working as a builder in Orange, NSW.
"It was fun and it was exciting being back on the field, you miss it… I just like being around the team environment," Grevsmuhl told NRL.com.
"It's nice, I really thank [coach] Neil Henry for giving me the opportunity [on Sunday], having the faith in me to go out there and do the job to the best of my ability.
"I'm glad to be here, be around some really good mates of mine off the field.
"I have grown up with a lot of these boys.
"I played with most of these guys in my junior football days, then I had Chris McQueen [who is a former teammate] from down at Souths, he is one of my best mates.
"You miss being around people all the time, I always said that while being in a team you could be around lots of people but still feel lonely at the same time, but the boys here have taken me in and made me feel at home."