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1982 Kangaroos Tour of England and France

Roar Guru
18th August, 2009
5
2628 Reads

Prior to the Super League war, a Kangaroo Tour to England and France was the pinnacle of every rugby league player’s career (apart from winning the respective premierships in Sydney and Brisbane).

In 1982, the Australian rugby league team, the Kangaroos, went on a tour of England and France.

The 1982 Kangaroos had in their side players such as Wally Lewis, Brett Kenny, Max Krilich, Craig Young, Peter Sterling, Steve Rogers, Mal Meninga, Ray Price and Wayne Pearce.

Before the tour, the Kangaroos split into two squads, one team to play Papua New Guinea, the other side Western Australia in an exhibition game. Both games were won in very easy fashion by the Kangaroos.

Coach Frank Stanton made an interesting selection choice prior to the opening tour match against Hull Kingston Rovers, when he named Brett Kenny and Peter Sterling as the five-eighth and half back ahead of Lewis and Steve Mortimer.

Both Kenny and Sterling kept Lewis and Mortimer out of the first Test line-up against Great Britain. Pearce and Eric Grothe also made their Test debuts.

The Kangaroos won 40-4, which sent alarm bells ringing in British rugby league.

In fact, the Kangaroos went on to win every game on the tour of Britain and France, and came home known as ‘The Invincibles.’

Players like Lewis, Kenny, Sterling, Pearce, Meninga heralded a new golden era of Australian rugby league.

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That is, until the Super League war began.