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The Greatest Rugby League Player of All Time

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11 minutes ago, Pulga said:

I can't comment on the others but Lewis' inclusion is interesting.

He would be scraping into a top 5 Australian players at best.

Smith, Lockyer, Thurston and Johns all ahead of him comfortably.

Then players like Slater, Langer, Meninga are around his level.

So no hard-grafting prop forwards then (ie The ones who fight for the ball and wear down the opposition so that those in the "glamour" positions can reap all the glory) ?

Also, are there no players from pre-1980 worthy of inclusion ?  Even just regarding Australians then what about Gasnier, Raper, Beetson, Churchill, Bath, Messenger, etc ?

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6 hours ago, Manfred Mann said:

You are right about it all being opinions. However I have placed a lot of weight on the Australian list of Immortals (formerly chosen by rugby league journalists only, but now by a special panel of journalists and former players set up by the NRL), as well as by opinions expressed in the British rugby league media and on this forum. Though not totally in the latter case, since I regarded the award of Golden Boot to Kevin Sinfield as an appalling misjudgment at the time. I have seen most of the players listed actually play, though not Brian Bevan (who is though, it should be noted, on the announced short list for future membership of the Immortals).

You are also correct about the "very stable genius" comparison. Perhaps I have been infected by the poisonous rhetoric of Donald Trump. 

In Australia, the expert opinion would probably regard it as a close call to prefer Lewis over Thurston, even though Lewis's nick name is "King Wally." However it  is almost unanimous there that Billy Slater is the greatest full back of all time, and he is mentioned often as a future Immortal, much more so than Darren Lockyer. It should also be noted that Lockyer, unlike Slater, was a weak defender. Slater's defence was one of his strengths.

Churchill is.the greatest full.back 

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14 hours ago, Gooleboy said:

Sinfield was a top player, but not in the best 5 players ever. He didn't really excel at International level.

To put it mildly....

The greatest Rugby League player ever.... and the RFL have nominated 4 Brits and 1 Australian.  


Rugby League: Alive and Handling

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3 hours ago, RL does what Sky says said:

So no hard-grafting prop forwards then (ie The ones who fight for the ball and wear down the opposition so that those in the "glamour" positions can reap all the glory) ?

Also, are there no players from pre-1980 worthy of inclusion ?  Even just regarding Australians then what about Gasnier, Raper, Beetson, Churchill, Bath, Messenger, etc ?

I'm 34 so I only just remember Lewis. 

There are some great props from the past though and you're right, they don't get much credit. Glen Lazarus and Shane Webke were the best that I've seen. 

I'd predict the "Immortals" would have to have been pretty bloody good but I can't speak for them because I didn't see them play.


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44 minutes ago, Pulga said:

I'm 34 so I only just remember Lewis. 

There are some great props from the past though and you're right, they don't get much credit. Glen Lazarus and Shane Webke were the best that I've seen. 

I'd predict the "Immortals" would have to have been pretty bloody good but I can't speak for them because I didn't see them play.

Lewis was brilliant.  Every year in origin he would beat a nsw side full of stars as the star

Manly almost signed him in 87 I think and they were going to play him 6 in front of cliff Lyons 

You should read his book 

I used to hate him with a passion 

What a player 

Edited by aj1908
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20 hours ago, weloveyouwakefield2 said:


125 years and they reduce it to those 5 players, are they having a laugh??

Kevin Sinfield?! 

That's it, no more wine for me on Saturday nights, I'm evidently still drunk. 

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Great. the RFL runs a competition to create interest debate,  thought, involvement around the sport outside of actual games.....and dare I say it...some  F.U.N. (E.X?) And guess what happens on here?

 


Four legs good - two legs bad

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4 minutes ago, JohnM said:

Great. the RFL runs a competition to create interest debate,  thought, involvement around the sport outside of actual games.....and dare I say it...some  F.U.N. (E.X?) And guess what happens on here?

 

It would help if they did it properly, it's not a particularly difficult concept. People aren't being negative for the sake of it

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10 minutes ago, Moove said:

It would help if they did it properly, it's not a particularly difficult concept. People aren't being negative for the sake of it

People aren't being negative for the sake of it

Hmmmm...is that so.  Perhaps it's genetic.


Four legs good - two legs bad

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How can this be an "all time" list?

Not one of these players played in SL.*

 

 

 

 

 

 

(*Tongue in cheek swipe at that other thread title.)

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5 hours ago, Pulga said:

I'm 34 so I only just remember Lewis. 

There are some great props from the past though and you're right, they don't get much credit. Glen Lazarus and Shane Webke were the best that I've seen. 

I'd predict the "Immortals" would have to have been pretty bloody good but I can't speak for them because I didn't see them play.

Yes I totally understand your position in not having seen many of the players. This, however, shows how such a poll can never really give a proper answer because people often only vote for those who they have actually seen.

In fact it appears that those choosing this final five have the same thought. Bevan, of course, is well known for his tries but the rest have all played in many people's lifetime.

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5 hours ago, aj1908 said:

Lewis was brilliant.  Every year in origin he would beat a nsw side full of stars as the star

Manly almost signed him in 87 I think and they were going to play him 6 in front of cliff Lyons 

You should read his book 

I used to hate him with a passion 

What a player 

inventor off the offload too aj,amazing team player,but he could turn a game individually with a moment of magic,but hanley was harry potter in comparison

Edited by JDINTHEHIZZOUSE

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5 hours ago, aj1908 said:

Lewis was brilliant.  Every year in origin he would beat a nsw side full of stars as the star

Manly almost signed him in 87 I think and they were going to play him 6 in front of cliff Lyons 

You should read his book 

I used to hate him with a passion 

What a player 

Unless NSW played Brett Kenny in his Club position of 5/8 instead of moving him to the Centres.

 

I have met Wally a few times, great bloke.

Edited by Allora
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Talent is secondary to whether players are confident.

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The guy most likely to win you a game - Wally Lewis. Right behind him Alex Murphy. Best prop I ever saw Arthur Beetson. There's too many bloody good players from the old days to mention, Neil Fox, Bobby Fulton, Frank Myler, Roger the Dodger, Paul Charlton was a great full back in his day as was Graham Eadie. Stevo was the best hooker I ever saw.

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12 hours ago, Pulga said:

I can't comment on the others but Lewis' inclusion is interesting.

He would be scraping into a top 5 Australian players at best.

Smith, Lockyer, Thurston and Johns all ahead of him comfortably.

Then players like Slater, Langer, Meninga are around his level.

So much of what Wally did was away from the eye of the NSW supporters. Only to see him play regularly in the backend of his career when the Broncos. He certainly turned it on against the Blues whilst still hailing from QRL.

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9 hours ago, Celt said:

To put it mildly....

The greatest Rugby League player ever.... and the RFL have nominated 4 Brits and 1 Australian.  

2 Australians and yes, it is pretty pissweak

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1 hour ago, Allora said:

Unless NSW played Brett Kenny in his Club position of 5/8 instead of moving him to the Centres.

 

I have met Wally a few times, great bloke.

Brett Kenny was my favourite player. He was soooo damn good!

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12 hours ago, Pulga said:

I can't comment on the others but Lewis' inclusion is interesting.

He would be scraping into a top 5 Australian players at best.

Smith, Lockyer, Thurston and Johns all ahead of him comfortably.

Then players like Slater, Langer, Meninga are around his level.

And Brett Kenny is the greatest five-eighth. 

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1 hour ago, Szymala said:

And Brett Kenny is the greatest five-eighth. 

no way.

kenny was a good player but he was part of a team full of stars when there was no salary cap.

lewis, fittler, daley ahead of him.

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6 hours ago, aj1908 said:

no way.

kenny was a good player but he was part of a team full of stars when there was no salary cap.

lewis, fittler, daley ahead of him.

And Lockyer ahead of them.


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The minute you see Sinfield in that list, you just know that those who are picking the players haven't got a clue.

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19 hours ago, Celt said:

To put it mildly....

The greatest Rugby League player ever.... and the RFL have nominated 4 Brits and 1 Australian.  

It’s aimed at a UK audience. Natural most people answering the poll will only have seen players from here. They have thrown in a token Aussie in the five. Few people here know RL players from here, even far fewer people here know RL players from Australia. If you are a RL anorak and watch extensive footage of old games from here and Oz, then you will have a much more broadened view, but you would be in a tiny minority that would have such knowledge, and a poll such as this is not specifically aimed at those people.

My top five would all be from the UK. You cannot assess the five best players just from hearsay. If you do that then your view is null and void, as it isn’t your view. 

I’d have Hanley at #1. Two reasons. 1.Superior athlete. Players of African descent are much quicker than Caucasians, it’s a mismatch in a sprint, and so much of RL is just evading players on the run. Don’t think I’ve ever seen an Aussie even make a sprint final. Offiah would be ahead of them too in this category as he leaves them in his wake. 2.Hanley had the skills to go along with his athleticism. Jason Robinson was awesome in league too. That side step could leave anyone for dead.

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I have been watching R.L. for over 65years and it is unfair to pick out teams from different eras.But i will say Reg Gasnier is the best centre i have seen,he was complimented in the Australian team i saw by his centre partner Harry Wells who was built like a young  Billy Boston but had pace and tackled like a back row forward.

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