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May 23: Jennings' 109m try; video ref controversy

On this day, Michael Jennings ran 109m for a try, Paul Sironen was born, while video referee Sean Hampstead awarded a controversial Origin try.


Harry Eden is born in Kogarah, NSW. Eden played with the Dragons, Roosters and Rabbitohs and still holds the record for most tries by a prop (11) in a single season. He was the uncle of former NRL player Mike Eden and passed away in 2006 aged 63.


Future Balmain Tigers legend Paul Sironen is born. Sironen played 247 games from 1985 to 1998 with the Tigers. He represented Australia 23 times and also played 14 Origin games for NSW.

Paul Sironen scores for Balmain in the 1989 grand final.
Paul Sironen scores for Balmain in the 1989 grand final. ©NRL Photos


Queensland draws first blood in the 1989 Winfield State of Origin series with a 36-6 hammering of the Blues at Lang Park. It is the biggest win in Origin history. Queensland prop Martin Bella wins the man of the match award.   


Paul Carter is born in Penrith. The son of former Panthers star Steve Carter, Paul played with the Titans, Rabbitohs and Roosters before his career stalled in 2017.


A try, described by the Sydney Morning Herald as “the try from hell” robs NSW of victory in the State of Origin opener at the Sydney Football Stadium. Leading 12-4 with five minutes to play, the Blues are beaten 16-12 by a gallant Queensland.


Penrith centre Michael Jennings scores a slashing 109-metre try as the Panthers crush the Sydney Roosters 48-6 at CUA Stadium.

Michael Jennings gets airborne for the Panthers.
Michael Jennings gets airborne for the Panthers. ©NRL Photos


The opening State of Origin clash at Melbourne’s Etihad Stadium ends in a firestorm of controversy when video referee Sean Hampstead awards Queensland centre Greg Inglis a contentious try that helps lift the Maroons to an 18-10 victory.


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