ST George Illawarra fullback Ben Hornby had just dived over the line in the 79th minute to assure victory for the Dragons in their final match of the 2002 regular season against Newcastle. But the size of the victory meant that for the first time, the Warriors had finished as minor premiers.
SOME fans would say that New Zealand rugby league is currently enjoying a boom period. There was huge media and public interest when the Warriors reached the NRL grand final in 2002, and now that the Warriors look likely to again make the top 8 (for the third consecutive year), New Zealand rugby league fans have a competitive side to watch week in, week out, in the world?s best rugby league competition. Surely this is what the fans and administrators hoped for when the Warriors played their first game in 1995.
NEW South Wales rugby league coach Phil Gould says the sandy surface of Suncorp Stadium is safe and has expressed his sympathy for the ground's administrators.
BRAD Drew and Phil Graham have been dumped from first grade after the Raiders lost their third match in succession to the Melbourne Storm on Sunday. Into the side come Michael Monaghan, Tyran Smith and Adam Mogg.
PARRAMATTA has added another North Queensland player to its ranks for the next National Rugby League season.
SOUTHS have failed in a last-ditch attempt to re-sign young winger Nathan Merritt, who will play for Cronulla until at least the end of 2005.
MANLY'S hopes of a finals berth have taken a battering with confirmation powerhouse winger John Hopoate will miss the rest of the National Rugby League season because of a broken ankle.
NORTH Queensland coach Graham Murray has re-signed with the National Rugby League club until the end of 2006, further strengthening the Cowboys' hopes of being a genuine premiership contender.
RADISSON Maine Wests Tigers Head Coach, Tim Sheens has announced his team for the game against the Cronulla Sharks, on Sunday 13 July 2003 at Leichhardt Oval. Kick off is at 2.30pm.
THE National Rugby League described an inquiry into an alleged salary cap breach by Newcastle as a routine investigation and dismissed suggestions it was of huge magnitude.
PENRITH Panthers coach , John Lang has maintained the intensity for this weekends clash with the South Sydney Rabbitohs.
Lang has made no changes to his run on side and the only change is the return of Colin Ward to the interchange bench.
WARRIORS second row forward Ali Lauiti'iti will make his 100th first grade appearance for the club this Saturday night when the Warriors play the Manly Sea Eagles at Ericsson Stadium.
VERSATILE Dragon Ben Hornby will be the fourth captain to lead the Dragons this season when they chase their fourth successive win in their Telstra Premiership match against the Raiders this Sunday.
MELBOURNE Storm will welcome back captain Stephen Kearney from a groin injury for Saturday night?s clash with the North Queensland Cowboys at Olympic Park.