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On this day, Souths members say 'yes' to Crowe and Holmes a Court, Billy Slater can't stop scoring tries and Viliame Kikau stops a certain try with a miraculous defensive play.


Wests captain Cameron Blair becomes a hero when he goes to the aid of Parramatta halfback Tony Cosatto after Cosatto swallowed his tongue. Blair receives an official commendation after putting Cosatto in a position that allowed him to breathe. A grateful Cosatto later says "It is the Australian way, in a life and death situation you try and look after your mate."

Freakish Wesser flick


Easts’ 29-year-old prop Danny Shepherd is rushed to St Vincent’s Hospital’s intensive care unit after collapsing during the Roosters’ match with the Gold Coast at the Sydney Football Stadium. He remains in a coma for 10 days before regaining consciousness in one of the saddest/happiest stories of the year. He is later diagnosed as suffering heat exhaustion but makes a complete recovery.


South Sydney members vote “yes” to the proposal of Russell Crowe and Peter Holmes a Court to privatise the iconic club. The proposal requiring 75% support to succeed – scrapes in by a mere 32 votes. Patriarch George Piggins insists he is finished with the club, declaring: “It’s over. I won’t be watching the team play. It’s a big blow but that’s life. It’s about time I wandered off”.

Cronk bags a double against the Roosters


Newcastle’s clash with the Raiders at Canberra Stadium yields 102 points to break the record for the highest scoring match in premiership history. Newcastle captain Andrew Johns scores 30 points as the Knights win 70-32.

Knights legend Andrew Johns.
Knights legend Andrew Johns. ©NRL Photos


Winger Nathan Merritt scores what is an immediate try of the season nomination in the Rabbitohs' 31-6 defeat of Parramatta. Merritt played 218 games for Souths and scored 146 tries for the club.


Star fullback Billy Slater becomes the first player to score four try doubles in the opening four rounds of a season. Slater ends up playing 322 games with the Storm and scores 191 tries before retiring at the end of the 2018 season.


Brisbane and North Queensland “re-enact” their grand final thriller of 2015 with a rematch of the highest quality at Suncorp Stadium. Like the grand final, the Good Friday showdown ends in golden point time, only on this occasion it is the Broncos who celebrate after a 40-metre field goal by five-eighth Anthony Milford delivers a 21-20 victory.   

Defy Impossible: Viliame Kikau's match-saving tackle


Penrith second-rower Viliame Kikau produces an epic defensive play to prevent Melbourne centre Justin Olam from scoring what would have been a match-winning try in a high-quality grand final rematch at BlueBet Stadium. The Panthers continue their undefeated start to the season without key playmaker Nathan Cleary, who was recovering from concussion.


This article contains information from the official records of NRL historian David Middleton

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