52. Kel O'Shea

In the history of rugby league in Australia, it is difficult to find a more devastating second-row combination than Kel O'Shea and Norm Provan.

Both were tall, strong, fast and non-stop workers in attack and defence.

O'Shea gained his first representative selection for Queensland and then Australia in 1954, while he was playing in Ayr in Queensland.

It was simply a matter of time before he was enticed to move to Sydney and in 1956 he signed with Western Suburbs and was a cornerstone in their drive up the competition ladder.

In his first season in the Sydney premiership he played for NSW and in Tests against New Zealand, before making the 1956–57 Kangaroo tour of Great Britain and France.

O'Shea played in the three Tests in England on that tour, but without Provan, who had to watch from the stand because of a nagging leg injury.

In 1957, O'Shea was a key member of Australia's outstanding World Cup team. He wound up his representative career with selection in the three Tests against Great Britain in 1958, but premiership victory eluded him against the might of the great St George machine.

O'Shea played in 112 first-grade games for Western Suburbs, including the 1961 and 1963 grand finals (he was injured in 1958 and ill in 1962).

Position: Second row.

Clubs: Ayr Colts 1951–55; Western Suburbs 1956–63; Maitland 1964–65.

Games for NSW: Eight (1956–58).

Games for Queensland: 10 (1953–55).

Tests for Australia: 15 (1954–58).

World Cup matches: Five (1954–57).

Representative landmarks: Kangaroo tour 1956–57; World Cups 1954, 1957.