Johns becomes the eighth Immortal
Andrew Johns has tonight been named Rugby League Week’s eighth Immortal at the Men of League Gala Dinner in Sydney.
The Team of the Century halfback joins the game’s most prestigious club of champions – Bob Fulton, Clive Churchill, Reg Gasnier, John Raper, Graeme Langlands, Wally Lewis and Arthur Beetson – in the Immortals ranks.
Editor in Chief, ACP Men’s Lifestyle Sports, Mr Martin Lenehan, said Rugby League Week was proud to add another champion to its list of Immortals.
“The Immortals stands above all other honours in our great game and Rugby League Week is proud and excited to be adding another champion to the club,” Mr Lenehan said.
“To assist with this monumental task we put together a panel of judges without peer in the game and the man they have chosen to join this exclusive club stands tall alongside the seven current Immortals for his spectacular achievements on the football field.
“Rugby League Week has nurtured the Immortals since its inception in 1981 and looks forward to working closely with Men of League and the ARLC to ensure the Immortals maintains its rightful place as the pinnacle of Rugby League.
“We congratulate Joey on becoming the eighth member of the most famous and fabled club in Rugby League.”
ARLC Interim Chief Executive, Mr Shane Mattiske said: “I think anyone who has been around Rugby League and watched Andrew Johns play the game would appreciate just how great a privilege it was to see him in action.
“Joey is not only one of the champion players of his era, he is one of the greatest the game has seen.
“To be chosen by such a distinguished group of judges as one of the game’s Immortals is an honour befitting his achievements in Rugby League.”
In an illustrious career, Johns won the Dally M Medal on three occasions as the best player in the NRL, the Provan-Summons Medal from 1998-2002, voted on by the fans, the Rugby League Week Player of the Year award in 1998-99 and 2002, the Golden Boot as the best player in the world in 1999 and 2001, Premierships in 1997 and 2001 and the Clive Churchill Medal as man of the match in the 2001 NRL Grand Final.
He captained his club, state and country in a career that spanned 306 matches, including 250 for the Newcastle Knights, 27 for Australia, 23 for NSW, three for NSW Country and three for Warrington Wolves.
Andrew Johns’ career statistics are attached to this release.
THE EIGHTH IMMORTAL JUDGES
Seven-time Premiership-winning coach Wayne Bennett
Australian Rugby League Commission Chairman John Grant
Channel Nine commentator Ray Warren
2GB and Channel 9 commentator Ray Hadley
Rugby League writers Phil Rothfield and Roy Masters
Former RLW editors Ian Heads, Norman Tasker, Tony Durkin, Geoff Prenter and Martin Lenehan, plus current RLW editor Mitchell Dale
Rugby League historian David Middleton
Immortals Bob Fulton, John Raper, Reg Gasnier, Wally Lewis and Graeme Langlands
THE CURRENT IMMORTALS
Bob Fulton, Clive Churchill, Reg Gasnier and John Raper (inducted 1981)
Graeme Langlands and Wally Lewis (inducted 1999)
Arthur Beetson (inducted 2003)