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Duncan Thompson

Halfback

Player Bio

Inducted:
2008
Birthplace:
Warwick, QLD
Date of Birth:
19 February 1895
Nickname:
-
Debut Team:
Queensland
Opposition:
New South Wales
Date:
05 June 1915
Venue:
Royal Agricultural Society Ground, Sydney,
Representative:
New South Wales, Queensland, Australia
Clubs:
St Paul’s Ipswich, Wests Newcastle, North Sydney, Starlights Ipswich, Valleys Toowoomba

Career

Milestones
  • Premierships: 1921-22
  • Kangaroo Tour: 1921-22
  • Queensland Team of the Century: 2008
  • Rated No. 10 in Rugby League Week’s Top 100 players: 1992
First Class Games
126
Points
375
Tries
27

Biography

Duncan Thompson was regarded as one of the sharpest halfback tacticians to play the game. His ability to create an overlap, to surprise opponents with a blindside rush, or to beat a man with a pass was said to be years ahead of its time.

Thompson's career was almost cut short by World War I, when he suffered a gunshot wound that led to doctors informing him that he would never play sport again.

But Thompson defied the medicos, resuming his rugby league career in 1919.

A transfer with the bank resulted in Thompson linking with North Sydney in 1920, where he was to guide the club to successive premiership victories in 1921–22 (the second year as captain).

He played nine Tests for Australia, including the second Test against England in 1920 when Australia won the Ashes for the first time at home. Thompson was a controversial selection, but he silenced any detractors with a display that was regarded as one of the finest ever by a halfback.

Thompson returned to Queensland and was a force behind the emergence of the Toowoomba Clydesdales as a powerhouse of the game. To the great Queensland and Australian front-rower Herb Steinohrt, he was ''without a doubt the best attacking halfback in the history of the game''.

Thompson later turned to coaching where many of his philosophies became the accepted practice throughout the game.

“First Ipswich, then NSW, North Sydney, Toowoomba and Queensland responded to the magic wand of his genius.”

Mick Fihelly, Queensland writer Featured in the Redcap Annual following Thompson’s retirement in 1926

Career Stats

Club Career

Club
Team Name Competition Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
St Paul’s Ipswich Ipswich Club Competition 1911 1915 - - - - -
Western Suburbs Newcastle Newcastle Rugby League 1915 1915 - - - - -
North Sydney Premiership
1916
1920
1916
1923
58 12 46 - 128
North Sydney City Cup
1916
1920
1922
1916
1920
1922
6 1 16 - 35
Starlights Ipswich Ipswich Club Competition 1919 1919 - - - - -
Valleys Toowoomba Toowoomba Club Competition 1924 1925 - - - - -

Representative Career

Intercity

Intercity
Team Name Competition Opponent Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
Ipswich Touring Sides 1919 1919 1 - - - -
Toowoomba Touring Sides 1924 1925 2 - 5 - 10
Toowoomba Builmiba Cup 1925 1925 4 2 1 - 8

State

State
Team Name Competition Opponent Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
New South Wales Interstate series Queensland 1922 1922 1 - - - -
New South Wales Touring sides 1921 1921 1 1 - - 3
New South Wales Queensland and New Zealand 1921 1921 1 1 - - 3
Queensland Interstate series New South Wales
1915
1919
1924
1915
1919
1925
11 - 18 - 36
Queensland Touring sides
1919
1924
1919
1925
5 4 8 - 28

International

International
Team Name Competition Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
Australia Tests
1919
1924
1922
1924
9 1 4 - 11
Australia Tour matches 1921 1922 23 3 47 - 103

Other Representative

Other Representative
Team Name Opponent Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
Kangaroos Australasia 1922 1922 1 - 1 - 2
Metropolis University XIII 1922 1922 1 1 1 - 5
Metropolis Maoris 1922 1922 1 1 - - 3
Metropolis Queensland 1923 1923 1 - - - -

Hall Of Fame Members