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The NRL has today acknowledged the passing of former Rugby League administrator Bob Abbott.

Mr Abbott was a former Australian Rugby League General Manager and was also instrumental in the establishment of the State of Origin concept.

He also worked tirelessly to develop the game in the minor states and across the Pacific, and was pivotal in moves to establish the game in Fiji in the early 1990s.

Mr Abbott was honoured with an Order of Australia Medal in 1990.

"Bob was an important figure in the central administration of the game for 20 years," NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said.

"He was deputy chairman of Cronulla in 1967, became vice-president of the NSWRL in 1977, and was appointed general manager of the ARL in 1983.

"He was and always will be a vital part of Rugby League's progression."