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Opinion

Rugby league's four greatest rivalries

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Roar Guru
19th July, 2020
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1410 Reads

We have seen a lot of rivalries over the years, team versus team and player versus player.

We have seen some legendary ones that have their moments, stories and fights.

To me, I have four that stand out.

Benny Elias versus Mario Fenech
This one has many stories. Every time they faced each other, they simply just wanted to kick lumps out of each other. Let’s not forget the infamous moment when Benny bit his own hand and blamed the Falcon, who got sent off.

Souths versus Easts
The oldest rivalry in the books. They are two teams who have exchanged a lot between grand final matches, close encounters and big floggings.

State of Origin
Perhaps the most fierce rivalry ever, we saw a lot of heat during the State of Origin. It was at one point an annual tradition just to see NSW and Queensland get in a fight.

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The old saying goes: “State of Origin isn’t State of Origin if there isn’t a fight.” Now fights are banned, I think it’s taken a lot out of Origin. I’m not saying we should bring the fights back, but I can tell it’s shown a difference.

Josh McGuire

(Photo by Ryan Pierse/Getty Images)

Newcastle versus Manly
Now this one here is my favourite one and yes it’s because I go for Newcastle. There are a lot of things to be said from Newcastle stealing the grand final win, their 2018 golden point win and the close encounter a few weeks back.

From Manly’s perspective, they beat us at home 16-14 and they stole the win in 2014 with Daly Cherry-Evans kicking the last-second field goal. The beginning of the rivalry was how much Paul Harragon and Mark Carroll just hated each other. Since then, the rivalry has not only spread to the teams, it’s carried one.

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