General Rugby Leagues Memory Lane

tajhay

🏉
Posted on behalf of Pozza Pozza .

KIWIS 1971 TOUR.jpg
 
That was when I was starting to really get into Rugby League, aged 11. I would practice kicks at goal on the pitch behind my grandparents house, watch the full game on BBC Grandstand, then practice more with a few other kids in the street.

I remember winger Phil Orchard scoring a try that pretty much won the Kiwis the series.
 
Pretty good spread of players from Auckland, Canterbury and West Coast. I think the Orchards may have been from BOP? Game has changed so much. Mainly pakeha and maori players then as with most Auckland club sides with Marist being an exception. Polynesians really excelled once they took the game up.
 
Former Gt Britain and Cronulla forward Cliff Watson passed away today. One of the real hard men of his era. If you get the opportunity to look at the 1973 GF Cliff was front and center in the stoushes
RIP
 
https://twitter.com/millsjim44/status/991522114388807681

DcKYGz7X0AEFRGR.jpg:large



Back in 1997 during those Superleague matches, Steve Rogers was interviewed on Sky with Watson and Tommy Bishop before a St Helens v Cronulla game. He said the level of violence during that 1973 game was a real eye opener for him. Watson just grinned
I remember my Dad telling me it was war with football boots, he also made the comment that
the great NZ ref John Percival would have marched half of the players from both teams if he had
been reffing.
 
"A punch on the nose never hurt anyone."


The GB side that toured in 1979 were always going to struggle as the game had fallen well behind Australia, but some of the selections were idiotic. Doug Laughton ffs, he was almost pension age by then. We needed some young forwards.

Playing in that 1932 test shown as a newsreel on that site is someone my Grandad knew well and who I met very briefly once.
https://www.newsandstar.co.uk/sport/Name-feared-Down-Under-26aec2b3-e9e0-4e4a-9c75-280d415d4ce4-ds
They should have flown him out in 1979, couldn't have done any worse.
 
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bruce

Contributor
Former Gt Britain and Cronulla forward Cliff Watson passed away today. One of the real hard men of his era. If you get the opportunity to look at the 1973 GF Cliff was front and center in the stoushes
RIP
Sorry I missed this post. Cliff was a genuine legend of the game. Sam Burgess might have been better in the gym, but Watson was a better player. The infamous punch up against Malcolm Reilly at Brookvale was one of the best. Back in those days the Poms were the toughest forwards in the game.
 

bruce

Contributor
https://www.nzherald.co.nz/sport/news/article.cfm?c_id=4&objectid=12053075
Tom Hadfield - Kiwi league loses one of the greats
Tom Hadfield — a Kiwi league great and try-scoring specialist — has passed away in Auckland, aged 83.

Winger Hadfield played 38 games including 17 tests between 1956 and 1961. He is among the New Zealand Rugby League's 'Legends of League' and made the Kiwis team of the century alongisde other stars including Des White, Roger Bailey, Stacey Jones, Ruben Wiki, Mark Graham and Ron Ackland.

Hadfield - from the Northcote club - set a Kiwis test record of 15 tries, a mark since overtaken by the likes of Manu Vatuvei, Nigel Vagana and Jason Nightingale.

Maybe Hadfield's crowning moment came in the 1960 series against France, when he was the dominant player in low scoring wins at a muddy Carlaw Park. With the Kiwis holding a one point lead in the second test, right wing Hadfield - bloodstained from a high tackle - charged 70 metres, beating three tackles to score.


A league writer and enthusiast named Eric Bennetts was so impressed that he presented Hadfield with a silver tray. Bennetts wrote to Hadfield saying he had watched both union and league since 1913, and regarded his second test performance as "the best ever".

In 1958, Hadfield swallowed his tongue during a club game and almost died, and spent three days in hospital. At one point he scored tries in nine consecutive tests, and another great moment came as part of a below-strength Kiwis team which won the first test on a British tour, although they lost the next two.

Tom played in the famous Auckland District scheme for Northern Districts although he was a Northcote boy through and through. Really nice guy with a ton of guts and tough as teak. Vale Tom
 
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bruce

Contributor
Anyone have a new thread name we can call this thread???
You will think of something;)...maybe great players and memories of yesteryear.

I was at that French test in 1960. It was very wet and muddy and the French were very frustrated. Auckland was having a wet winter even by today's standards. I remember going to watch them train at Hendon Park, again in the rain.

During the game tensions were high and the fists started flying in all directions, and these were the days when forwards played pretty hard anyway. That try of Tom Hadfields was pure class, he was a great player but otherwise just an ordinary guy at the local pub. He deserves a mention.
 
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