Jungle Deuce Wins Phoenix Vote Thriller

A dramatic late voting frenzy has seen Jungle Deuce clinch Greyhound Racing NSW’s coveted place in The TAB Phoenix at The Meadows on December 18.

Adam Dobbin

29 November 2021

A dramatic late voting frenzy has seen Jungle Deuce clinch Greyhound Racing NSW’s coveted place in The TAB Phoenix at The Meadows on December 18.

More than 5000 entries were received for The Daily Telegraph’s “The People’s Pup” competition where ten of the sport’s most exciting greyhounds were vying for a spot in the inaugural $1.145m The Phoenix.

With the depth of quality up for consideration, voting always promised to be spirited – and it was.

Hugely popular group 1 winner Bandit Ned was dominating the count for the majority of the week before a significant late surge for Jungle Deuce got him over the line – just.

“Almost 50 per cent of the votes submitted in the final 36 hours of competition were for Jungle Deuce,” Daily Telegraph Editor Ben English said.

“For the majority of the competition Bandit Ned appeared to have the numbers to book his Phoenix spot before the late move for Jungle Deuce took place.

Jungle Deuce winning the Flying Amy at Albion Park

“It’s great to see how passionate greyhound fans are for their sport. In the end less than one per cent of the votes separated Jungle Deuce and Bandit Ned at the top of the list.

“The Daily Telegraph has been delighted to play a role in this fresh and innovative concept.

“It shows what a great alignment greyhound racing has with The Daily Telegraph.

“We are as passionate about the greyhounds as our readers are.’’

Trained by Jack Smith of Feral Franky fame at Forbes, Jungle Deuce launched his The Phoenix preparations with a middle distance victory at Dubbo on Saturday night.

The multiple group winner, a younger half-brother to superstar WA sprinter Tommy Shelby, will take his place in the lucrative race with a win at The Meadows already under his belt, having scored in slick fashion in October.

Speaking following the announcement of Jungle Deuce as “The People’s Pup”, GRNSW Chief Executive Officer Tony Mestrov said he was thrilled with the response.

“I would firstly like to congratulate Jack Smith and the connections of Jungle Deuce in being voted The People’s Pup and winning the right to represent GRNSW and the people of NSW in The TAB Phoenix,” Mestrov said.

 “I understand it was a hotly contested ballot, and regardless of the outcome we would have been well represented in Melbourne. But the public have spoken and selected Jungle Deuce who I know has a realistic chance of bringing the $750,000 first prize back across the border.

 “I would like to thank the Daily Telegraph for their support, and also the connections of the other nine greyhounds for their involvement.

“The promotion has achieved what we aimed for, with greyhound racing attracting significant interest and traction through the Telegraph and social media, not only within the industry but to a new wider audience.

 “Now it’s time for us all to get on board with Jungle Deuce and cheer for The People’s Pup to bring the inaugural TAB Phoenix trophy to NSW.”

While Jungle Deuce has now been selected for The Phoenix, the competition winner who will have a chance to win up to $50,000 in cash prizes, will be announced on Monday afternoon.