Footy cult figure ‘the Phantom Siren’ makes a comeback at Dragons vs Cowboys NRL game
Footy cult figure ‘the Phantom Siren’ makes a comeback when the Dragons are crushed by the Cowboys: ‘They didn’t entertain the crowd, so I thought they were’
- Dragons supporter Gosh Daher has the ability to perfectly mimic the NRL siren
- He has spent 20 years trying to mislead referees by calling the full-time siren early
- After seemingly retiring in 2018, the Phantom Siren returned on Sunday
- Fortunately, his call had no dramatic impact on the Dragons v Cowboys match
After seemingly disappearing from the NRL stands in 2018 after signing up with Fox Sports, Gosh Daher – the man behind the Phantom Siren – returned to Kogarah Oval on Sunday for the Dragons’ showdown against North Queensland.
The 48-year-old has spent the better part of 20 years trying to fool officials with his ability to mimic the sound of the full-time siren with nothing but his cupped hands and pounding lungs.
Sitting in the stands and watching his beloved Dragons pumped up by the Cowboys, Daher thought it was time to make a comeback.
“The Dragons players weren’t entertaining the crowd, so I thought they were,” he said.
“It’s all fun – the fans loved it.”
The first time he treated fans to his famous wail came just before halftime.
Gosh Daher AKA The Phantom Siren
“The ghost siren,” Michael Ennis exclaimed in commentary for Fox Sports.
His commentary partner Warren Smith recorded it from there.
“The Phantom Siren is here. We’ve got the ice cream truck and the Phantom, both up the hill by the famous old Kogarah,” he said.
“He didn’t get them.”
Then, just before full-time, Daher struck again.
“There’s the siren again, the old Phantom is firing one early,” Smith said.
“He won’t catch our officials, though, because they’ve got a countdown in their ears these days.”
While his efforts didn’t affect the Dragons-Cowboys showdown, it caused chaos when Daher first sounded the siren during a match.
The scores were tight at Wollongong Showground with the St George Illawarra Dragons leading a slim 4-0 over the Wests Tigers in 2000 but with a man in the sin box.
Wests had a scrum 10 yards from the Dragons line with 18 seconds left before halftime and a real chance to score – until the Phantom Siren intervened.
Referee Paul Simpkins thought the siren was real and called off time off as Wests’ Craig Field headed for the tryline, the halfback throwing the ball away in disgust at the call.
Fortunately, Wests won 15-9, so the Phantom Siren didn’t affect the game.
The Phantom Siren was missed by the Channel Nine commentary team, with Phil Gould and Billy Slater discussing qualifiers for the Cowboys premiership at the time in the second half.
“See how they offer any kind of resistance to the Panthers in the premiership?” asked Gould.
‘Yes I can. I think the Panthers are the best team in the league…I think [the Cowboys] are next in line,” Slater replied.
‘Consistently [winning]along with the Sharks I think, but they all have to beat the Panthers.
“But they’re on schedule, the Cowboys.”