On this day, a new Tina Turner commercial is launched, Brad Fittler is marched for the first time and Matt Cecchin returns to the refereeing ranks.
Journeyman NRL outside back Jonathan Wright was born on this day in 1987. Wright made his NRL debut with the Parramatta Eels in 2009, spending two years at the club before two-year stints at the Bulldogs, Sharks and Warriors. He played on the game's biggest stage in the 2013 grand final and finished his career in 2018 at the Manly Sea Eagles.
The NSWRL launched the new season with a Tina Turner commercial featuring the game's young guns, including Matt Rodwell, Luke Ricketson, Craig Weston and Michael Buettner. Turner had first fronted the game's advertising campaign in 1989 and her song "Simply the Best" had been the game's theme song since 1990. She would go on to perform at the 1993 grand final.
Sydney City Roosters captain Brad Fittler is sent off for the first time in the Roosters' shock round one 26-16 loss to the Auckland Warriors. Warriors forward Ali Lauiti'iti was also sent off and two other players sin-binned following a scuffle between the sides. The Roosters would bounce back to finish fourth that season.
Respected referee Matt Cecchin announces he will return to the NRL after quitting in 2018 due reportedly to mounting pressure on the game's whistleblowers.
This article contains information from the official records of NRL historian David Middleton