THE fallout from one of the toughest Origins in recent memory has seen Queensland reshuffle their line-up into a tougher outfit for Origin II.
STATE of Origin returns to Sydney tonight with Queensland desperate to keep rugby league's showpiece series alive.
QUEENSLAND will have to overcome a 15-year Origin hoodoo to win this year's State of Origin series.
THE New South Wales Blues have scored a dominant 27-4 victory over the Queensland Maroons to win the match and the series at Telstra Stadium tonight.
NEW South Wales coach Phil Gould says rain in Sydney today is likely to help the bigger Queensland forwards in tonight's second match of the rugby league State of Origin series.
TWO drawn results hit the headlines in this round of the NSWRL Premier League, with the Newtown Jets drawing with the North Sydney Bears, and the Magpies and Roosters also ending equal on the scoreboard.
THE Sydney Airport Jets and fellow 1908 Foundation Club the North Sydney Bears turned on a thrilling 22-all draw in the NSW Premier League match played at Henson Park last Saturday.
This was also the deciding match for the inaugural Frank Hyde Cup series, and fittingly that living Rugby League legend Frank Hyde himself was on hand to present the trophy to the two captains, Craig Field (Newtown) and Ben Black (Norths). Frank received an enormous reception from the good Henson Park crowd, and the old trouper was clearly delighted to be back in the thick of the action at the ground he first graced as a player with the Bluebags nearly seventy years ago.
Both teams made sure this Cup decider would be a game to remember. The Jets looked the goods leading 22-6 with fifteen minutes remaining, but the Bears charged home to draw level with just three minutes left on the clock. Amazingly, the Jets then had a try controversially disallowed as the full-time siren sounded! Newtown missed the go-forward of giant prop Monah Elahmad after he left the field injured. Billy Najarrin, Tony Phillips,Tabua Cakacaka and Joe Lichaa were other Jets forwards to stand out, while Craig West and Andrew Le Breton were the best of the backs.
In the Jim Beam Cup match, Newtown fought on gamely against the competition leaders Ryde-Eastwood, eventually going down by 30-14. These boys might have had a disrupted season, but they certainly don't lack "bottle" or pride in themselves.
The Sydney Airport Jets meet South Sydney in the Premier League at Aussie Stadium this Sunday at 1.00pm, while on Saturday in the Jim Beam Cup the Jets travel away to take on The Entrance, with this match kicking off at 3.15pm.
HERE at Newtown we believe we have a special product on offer at our home games at Henson Park, and that the Newtown club has a valuable ongoing role in Rugby League football. This very articulate supporter's message is worth reading.
CES Mountford's fascinating story reflects a lifetime in Rugby League. He first played for Blackball in new Zealand before World War Two. He joined Wigan in 1946, and was a key member of the club's great post-war team, winning every honour in the game. The climax of his Central park career was captaining the side in the victorious 1951 Challenge Cup Final. He was the first overseas player to win the Lance Todd Trophy. Many people regard him as the best stand-off in the world at that time. He also played for Other Nationalities.
In 1951, he moved to Warrington, and managed the Wire to some of their greatest triumphs, including the 1954 Odsal Cup Final replay victory and two Championship wins.
FRIDAY 27th June 2003
WIGAN Winger Brett Dallas has pledged his loyalty to the club by turning down a lucrative contract with Australian club Cronulla Sharks.
WIGAN Warriors have six players in the the 2003 County of Origin squads announced on Tuesday morning.
MARK Hilton, 27 has been selected in the Lancashire side for this yeaR's 2003 Origin fixture on Tuesday 2nd July 2003, kick-off 7.45pm at Odsal Stadium, Bradford.
PENRITH has locked up one of the game's most exciting young stars, winger Luke Rooney, until the end of the 2006 National Rugby League season.
THE Sydney Roosters may have to jettison both their Kiwis props to squeeze National Rugby League (NRL) veteran Brad Fittler under their salary cap for the 2004 season.