Four new players named in Rugby League Hall of Fame

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josie andrews
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Four new players named in Rugby League Hall of Fame

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Rugby League Cares and the Rugby Football League have announced that four of the greatest players in the sport’s history will receive the highest honour the sport can bestow upon them next month when they are inducted into the Rugby League Hall of Fame.

Andy Farrell OBE, Adrian Morley, Clive Sullivan MBE and David Watkins MBE will formally join the 28 current members in Rugby League’s most exclusive club at an induction ceremony in Wigan on Thursday October 27.

RFL Chief Executive Ralph Rimmer said: “On behalf of the whole sport I would like to congratulate Andy, Adrian, Clive and David on this wonderful achievement, which is so richly deserved.

“Millions of people have played this great sport in the last 127 years, and it is a testimony to the quality of all four players that they are among just 32 who have so far been selected for inclusion in the Rugby League Hall of Fame.

“We are looking forward to inducting these four sporting giants into the Hall of Fame next month on what will undoubtedly be a very special evening for everyone.”

The inductions will take place at a celebration dinner at The Edge Arena in Wigan on Thursday October 27. At the same event, the first members will be inducted into the newly-established Women’s Rugby League Hall of Fame – the former Great Britain internationals Brenda Dobek, Lisa McIntosh and Sally Milburn.

The RL Hall of Fame is administered by the RFL and RL Cares in the charity’s capacity as champions of the sport’s heritage. Players are selected for entry into the Hall of Fame by a panel comprising members from across the sport, including administrators, former international players and historians.

To be considered for elevation into the Hall of Fame, players must have played professional Rugby League for at least 10 years, established a reputation that transcends the era in which they played and have a record of outstanding achievement at the very highest level.

The final eligibility criteria has been changed, with players now required to have been retired for five years since their last appearance (it had previously been 10 years).

In a 13-year career at Wigan, Andy Farrell (above) won six Championships and four Challenge Cups and was regarded as one of the most talented players of his generation.

He captained both Wigan and Great Britain by example and made 46 international appearances: 35 for Great Britain and 11 for England. Farrell played in two World Cup tournaments and in 1996 became the youngest captain in Lions history when he led the 1996 tour to PNG, New Zealand and Fiji.

Adrian Morley (above) established a reputation as the consummate professional over his near 20-year career, when he was regarded as a player of fierce commitment who expected the same from those around him.

He became the sport’s most-capped British player with 30 appearances for Great Britain and 23 for England.

Morley was a Challenge Cup winner with Leeds in 1999 before joining Sydney Roosters, with whom he won the 2002 Premiership and 2003 World Club Challenge.

He had a short spell at Bradford in 2005, when he was a Grand Final winner with the Bulls, and a year later he returned to the UK to join Warrington.

As captain of the Wolves, Morley led by example as the club enjoyed Challenge Cup final success in 2009, 2010 and 2012, as well as a Super League Grand Final appearance in 2012.

Cardiff-born Clive Sullivan was the last Great Britain captain to lift the World Cup trophy, leading the nation to success in 1972. He made over 550 appearances for Hull FC and Hull KR between 1961 and 1980, scoring a remarkable 365 tries (247 for Hull, 118 for Rovers).

He toured with the Lions in 1970, the last Great Britain team to win the Ashes.

In the 1972 World Cup he scored a try in each of Great Britain’s four games and scored a spectacular try to level the scores at 10–10 against Australia in the final. He also captained Wales in the 1975 World Cup, when he led them to a victory over England.

Sullivan played 47 times for Wales and Great Britain and made a total of 639 career appearances, including Challenge Cup final wins for Hull KR in 1980 and Hull FC in the 1982 replay at the age of 39. He passed away in 1985, aged just 42.

After joining Salford from Welsh Rugby Union in 1967 at the age of 25, David Watkins went on to play 466 games as a Rugby League player, including over 400 for Salford, 22 for Wales and 13 for Great Britain. He is Salford’s record points-scorer (2,907) and scored in 92 consecutive matches for the Red Devils. Watkins played in all six games for Wales in the 1975 World Cup.

RL Cares Chairman Tim Adams MBE said: “We would like to congratulate the four new inductees on their elevation into the Hall of Fame which is deserved recognition of their immense talent.

“Andy, Adrian, Clive and David created magical memories for millions of sports fans across the world during their illustrious careers and it is right and proper that they have been recognised in this way.”

There are now 32 inductees in the men’s RL Hall of Fame as follows:
Eric Ashton 2005 Wigan
Billy Batten 1988 Hunslet, Hull, Wakefield, Castleford
Brian Bevan 1988 Warrington, Blackpool
Billy Boston 1988 Wigan, Blackpool
Douglas Clark 2005 Huddersfield
Shaun Edwards 2015 Wigan, Bradford, London
Andy Farrell 2022 Wigan
Neil Fox 1989 Wakefield, Bradford, Hull KR, York, Bramley, Huddersfield
Albert Goldthorpe 2015 Hunslet
Andy Gregory 2018 Widnes, Warrington, Wigan, Leeds, Salford
Ellery Hanley 2005 Bradford, Wigan, Leeds
Martin Hodgson 2005 Swinton
Willie Horne 2014 Barrow, Oldham
Lewis Jones 2013 Leeds
Vince Karalius 2000 St Helens, Widnes
Roger Millward 2000 Hull KR, Castleford
Adrian Morley 2022 Leeds, Bradford, Warrington, Salford
Alex Murphy 1988 St Helens, Leigh, Warrington
Martin Offiah 2013 Widnes, Wigan, London, Salford
Jonty Parkin 1988 Wakefield, Hull KR
Gus Risman 1988 Salford, Workington, Batley
Malcolm Reilly 2014 Castleford
Albert Rosenfeld 1988 Huddersfield, Wakefield, Bradford
Garry Schofield 2013 Hull, Leeds, Huddersfield, Doncaster, Bramley
Clive Sullivan 2022 Hull KR, Hull, Oldham, Doncaster
Mick Sullivan 2013 Huddersfield, Wigan, St Helens, York, Dewsbury
Jim Sullivan 1988 Wigan
Derek Turner 2018 Hull KR, Oldham, Wakefield
Tom Van Vollenhoven 2000 St Helens
Harold Wagstaff 1988 Huddersfield
David Watkins 2022 Salford, Swinton, Cardiff
John Whiteley 2018 Hull ... l-of-fame/
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But to stand behind a team, to defend a team when it is down and really needs you,
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