Ridgway win in cards for kicker Congi?

IAN BUSBY, SUN MEDIA

, Last Updated: 10:22 AM ET

Luca Congi knows he's one kick away from being a legend.

When the Saskatchewan Roughriders won the Grey Cup in 1989, Dave Ridgway booted the game-winner in a 43-40 shootout victory over the Hamilton Tiger-Cats.

Even 20 years later, Ridgway is a god among Rider fans.

Congi could join him if he gets the chance at splitting the uprights against the Montreal Alouettes for a victory in today's 97th Grey Cup.

"I still hear the stories about Ridgway," said Congi, the Riders kicker since 2006. "You have to admire how much these fans love their team. A guy like Ridgway, who got them the '89 Cup after the last one in '66, he's a hero.

"It would be nice (to kick the winner), but it's more important to just win. There are times when you have a great game and lose, so it doesn't much count for anything. For me, it's about winning, and that's the most important."

Congi already has a Grey Cup ring from 2007, when the Riders beat the Winnipeg Blue Bombers. No late kick was needed.

On the other side, Alouettes kicker Damon Duval is suiting up in his fourth Grey Cup in five years.

Duval has yet to get a ring, so he's not worried about whether he gets a chance at being the hero.

"My ideal game is to kick eight converts and sit back and be able to watch," Duval said. "If I have to go out and kick it to win it, then that's what I will do."

Duval had a great season in leading the entire league in field-goal percentage. His 87.3% success rate was impressive considering he attempted 63 field goals.

Congi finished the season hitting on 76.7% of his attempts.

Outside of the game pressure, the crowd will likely be on Congi's side.

Then, there's the unpredictable wind at McMahon Stadium, with the temporary endzone bleachers creating swirling gusts.

"Every day wind is different," Congi said. "In pre-game, you make your judgments about how strong the wind is. You prepare for it because it's inevitable."

CHIU-SING RETIREMENT?

If the Alouettes do emerge victorious from the Grey Cup, don't expect an on-field retirement party from C Bryan Chiu. Although there were question marks heading into last year's title game at home, the 35-year-old feels like he could play a few more years.

"The setting was perfect last year, to walk away on top, (but we lost)," Chiu said. "I don't know about it now. My wife would kill me if I didn't consult her on a decision like that."

IAN.BUSBY@SUNMEDIA.CA


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