Something has to give

KIRK PENTON -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:26 AM ET

TORONTO -- Hogtown is about to get a real taste of the farm.

The Winnipeg Blue Bombers and Saskatchewan Roughriders, members of arguably the CFL's greatest rivalry, will meet Sunday in the 95th annual Grey Cup at Toronto's Rogers Centre.

The Apocalypse can't be far behind.

The Bombers downed the Toronto Argonauts 19-9 in yesterday's East Division final, while the Roughriders upset the defending champion B.C. Lions 26-17 in the West Final.

It's the first Grey Cup meeting between two of the CFL's three community-owned teams, and the outcome will end one of the two longest current CFL title droughts. The Bombers haven't won since 1990, while the Roughriders last sipped from the Cup in 1989.

"It's the Prairie Bowl now ... us and Saskatchewan. It couldn't be any better," Bombers defensive lineman Doug Brown said when the team arrived at Winnipeg International Airport last night and was greeted by more than 250 supporters.

Winnipeg last appeared in the big game in 2001, losing 27-19 to Montreal, while Saskatchewan last played for a crown in 1997, when it fell 47-23 to Toronto.

The Bombers have won 10 titles in their 77-year history, while the Roughriders have captured only two of the 94 Grey Cups.

"It's one of the best rivalries out there so it's going to be a great Grey Cup for the CFL," said Bombers offensive lineman Dan Goodspeed.

The teams split their season series this year. Saskatchewan won the annual Labour Day Classic 31-26 on Sept. 2, when quarterback Kerry Joseph dashed 27 yards for the game-winning touchdown with six seconds remaining.

The Bombers got revenge a week later in the fourth annual Banjo Bowl, thumping the Roughriders 34-15 on the strength of three Charles Roberts one-yard touchdowns.

Both teams finished second in their respective divisions. Winnipeg had a 10-7-1 mark, while Saskatchewan was 12-6.

"We know we can beat them, and they know they can beat us, so it should be an evenly played game," said Roberts, who on Saturday guaranteed Winnipeg would beat Toronto. "And the team that wants it more ... actually, I don't want to say that, because Saskatchewan's been longer without a Grey Cup than Winnipeg has, but the hungrier team should win.

"And we should be the more hungry team, because we've been to the Cup in the last 10 years and the organization's still got a bitter taste in their mouth from the last time we went and didn't finish what we set out to do."

The last time Winnipeg and Saskatchewan met in the playoffs was in 2003, when the Roughriders downed the Bombers 37-21 in the West Division semifinal at Canad Inns Stadium.

Ex-Roughriders on the Bomber roster are Andrew Greene, Davin Bush, Derick Armstrong, Kevin Glenn, Kelly Malveaux, Matt O'Meara and Chris Cvetkovic.

Former Bombers on the Roughriders roster include Mike Abou-Mechrek, Jermese Jones, Val St. Germain and Marc Parenteau, and running back Henri Childs. Former Bomber assistant coaches Mike Gibson and Paul LaPolice are also on head coach Kent Austin's staff.

Toronto Tourism is offering last-minute Grey Cup ticket packages to Bombers and Roughriders fans, beginning this morning. The tickets go on sale at 8 a.m. and can be purchased by calling 1-800-499-2514. Visit torontotourism.com for more information.

95TH GREY CUP

Winnipeg Blue Bombers vs. Saskatchewan Roughriders

When: Sunday, Nov. 25, 4:30 p.m. (CBC)

Where: Rogers Centre, Toronto

Tickets: Go on sale today at 8 a.m. and can be purchased by calling 1-800-499-2514. Visit torontotourism.com for more information.


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