Holden Kangaroos stars will pay tribute to the Rorke’s Drift Test by wearing commemorative jerseys in Sunday’s Four Nations match against England.
To mark the centenary of the famed third Test of 1914, Australia and England will don special jerseys based on those worn by the two teams 100 years ago.
The Holden Kangaroos’ jersey for Sunday’s match, at Melbourne’s AAMI Park, will feature the sky blue of NSW and the maroon of Queensland.
England triumphed 14-6 on July 4, 1914, despite having at times just 10 fit players on the field for their third Test in seven days. The moniker was coined after Australian journalists compared the victory, and particularly the heroic performance of English captain Harold Wagstaff, to the rearguard action staged by the British military against a Zulu army in South Africa in 1879.
“It’s always an honour to wear the green and gold but to wear the colours of the original Kangaroos is a real privilege,” Holden Kangaroos captain Cameron Smith said. “We are forever mindful of the future of the Kangaroos but it’s so important to also remember and honour those who played before us.
“The Rorke’s Drift Test is one of the most famous Test matches of all time, so to be able to celebrate it on such a stage, against England at AAMI Park, will be special for me as well as for my teammates.”
Coincidentally, this year also marks 100 years since an England touring side first played a Rugby League match in Melbourne.
On August 17, 1914, the touring English team defeated New South Wales 21-15 at the Melbourne Cricket Ground in front of 13,000. The Sydney Morning Herald reported at the time that £585 was taken at the gate.
The commemorative jerseys are available for purchase at NRLShop.com.