Bateman's hopes of winning a successive Grand Final were crushed as Sydney Roosters claimed a controversial 14-8 win over Canberra in front of a sell-out Grand Final crowd of 82,982 at ANZ Stadium.
The Kiwi Roosters prop was allegedly mistakenly told he had won the votes of Australian selectors Laurie Daley, Mal Meninga and Darren Lockyer.
Despite Wighton's individual success, he struggled to hide his disappointment after his team failed to break their 25-year premiership drought. "He's one of the greatest gentleman that I have met in the game as well".
However, he was told moments later that it was in fact Wighton who was voted the victor by Australian selectors Laurie Daley, Mal Meninga and Darren Lockyer.
"It's a feeling I can't explain, mate".
Not like a Canberra player would have liked to show it off, or anything...
'The best player on the field got the award, ' Stuart said. "Whether those people out there who booed agreed or not, Jack didn't pick it". Three legends of our game picked the award.
"And I think they know a little bit more than the wombats sitting in there beside the goal posts".
The mix-up was one of a handful of moments during and after the game which has dominated headlines.
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Sio Soliola did superbly to charge down Luke Keary's attacking kick, only for the loose ball to hit one of the trainers on the field and handing possession back to the Roosters from a scrum.
49th minute: Josh Papalii denied a penalty try when he was tackled without the ball.
Five-eighth and Clive Churchill medallist Jack Wighton capitalised in the 31 minute when he stepped through and dived over for his ninth try of the season.
Annesley suggested if the initial ruling had not been overturned and the Raiders had managed to score their own decisive try, he would have been answering similar questions from outraged Roosters fans.
Johnny Mayes reckons there is no player more suitable to join him in the record books than Sydney Roosters halfback Cooper Cronk.
Referee Ben Cummins had given the "6 again" signal to the Raiders before quickly changing to indicate "last", leading Canberra, and specifically Jack Wighton, to believe the tackle count had reset, only to find the call had been changed on the run.
But Dally M player of the year, Tedesco, ensured Cronk got the ideal send-off by finishing a devastating 72nd-minute counter-attack which made the Roosters the first side to win back-to-back titles in a unified Australian competition since Brisbane Broncos in 1992 and 1993.
Cooper Cronk led the Roosters to grand final glory 12 months ago with a busted shoulder.