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My Dad was a Magpie, I was a Dog (later a Bear), brothers Eels and Bunnies. These were the top five moments from childhood that led to my love of rugby league
1. 1981 grand final
My first memory of league. Grandparents Eels supporters. Brett Kenny with an intercept try. Parra had finally done it! Newtown’s final fling before they left the top grade.
2. Going to Lidcombe Oval
It was down the road. My old man used to support Wests but in the early 80s, soon after their good players had left for Manly and other places, they were battlers. We’d go anyway. Canterbury towelled them up 52-0 at Lidcombe Oval in 1984. Never once got close to getting a corner post. The other kids were too fast.
3. Parra 14 vs Canterbury 13, Belmore, 1984
What a game this was. From the Baa (Terry Lamb) double to the kick from the touchline to win it for Parra.
These were the two teams of the 80s going at each other on grassless Belmore in front of a full house. Was great to be there to watch the great teams play against each other.
4. Parra 8 v St. George 7, SCG
The old days of the SCG hill. The sight of Steve Rogers wrapped around Eric Grothe’s legs as the Guru scored in the corner with a minute remaining. Two greats coming together with the Guru and the Eels getting home on the day.
5. School fun run
1986, running through the streets of Chester Hill when a bloke asks me ‘How far you have to run?’, ‘20km’ I said. The guy looked impressed. ‘You’re Steve Folkes arent you?’, He nodded. A kid meets a legend.
There were no songs that got me to the game. No fancy marketing. It was all about the sport of rugby league.
What memories do you have from when you were a kid about rugby league?