By Malcolm Andrews
The ranks of rugby league world wide were liberally peppered with hardmen. With violence that may by no means be tolerated off the footy box, the sport has continuously been tough, tricky and hazardous. Stiff-arm tackles, headbutts, spear tackles - all geared toward maiming the competition gamers - have been as soon as simply a part of the sport. yet whereas the thuggery of outdated has been wiped clean up, the fashionable online game of massive hits at breakneck velocity is well no position for the faint-hearted.
Fans in pubs and golf equipment have consistently mentioned the braveness in their favorite sons - males who by no means took a backward step, like mythical South Sydney captain John Sattler, who performed in the course of the 1970 Premiership grand ultimate together with his jaw damaged in 3 areas, and 'Bumper' Farrell, who was once accused of biting off the ear of an opponent as he concurrently gouged his eyes. in additional contemporary instances Andrew Johns orchestrated Newcastle's 1997 grand ultimate good fortune with a punctured lung and 3 damaged ribs, and pint-sized Gold Coast megastar Preston Campbell picked up a damaged jaw early within the video game yet concealed it from team-mates till the ultimate whistle.
But Hardmen is far greater than a suite of bone-crunching collisions and wild confrontations. As Malcolm Andrews' bright profiles of the main brave and vibrant dramatically spread - from those that performed on with damaged legs in early occasions to the short and livid excessive effect of this day - we see either the attention-grabbing evolution of the sport and the fiercely resolute characteristics that experience steadfastly remained at its center. easily placed, Hardmen captures the original spirit of rugby league with the best number of ripping yarns ever released in one volume.
I regularly loved the sport extra while there has been a physique or mendacity approximately. It made my activity a piece extra interesting. - Vince Karalius
It used to be a true massacre. John O'Neill received sixteen stitches in a single of his shins. It used to be large gaping wound with blood all over. yet he nonetheless could not hold the grin off his face. Father John Cootes