On this day, Wally Lewis was slugged five grand for abusing a touch judge, unknown Queensland winger Kerry Boustead starred against NSW and Darren Lockyer produces yet another match-winning play for the Broncos.
A curious crowd of 65,543 watch the touring American All Stars play their first match at the Sydney Cricket Ground. The tourists, with next to no rugby league experience, are beaten 52-25 by a “generous” Sydney side. The tour develops into a farce, with suggestions that players from the Balmain juniors were “rung in” at least for some of the country tour games.
Unheralded Innisfail winger Kerry Boustead stars in his interstate debut opposite Australian winger Terry Fahey and is later selected in the Australian Test team to play New Zealand, aged just 18.
A sell-out crowd of 25,800 watch New South Wales recapture the State of Origin crown when they defeat Queensland 12-6 in a controversial match at Melbourne’s Olympic Park. Queensland skipper Wally Lewis is later fined $5000 for abusing a touch judge.
St George Illawarra dump David Waite as coach for 2001, leaving co-coach Andrew Farrar to take sole control of the club. Waite is informed of the decision on his 49th birthday. He pledges to see out the season with the Dragons.
Brisbane captain Darren Lockyer produces another moment of inspired brilliance to lead his team to a last-gasp victory over Parramatta at Suncorp Stadium. In the final play of the game, Lockyer beat three would-be tacklers and chipped ahead for flying winger Denan Kemp, who scored his fourth try of the night, carrying the Broncos to a 30-26 victory.
Rookie forward Liam Martin stars on NRL debut for the Panthers in a 15-12 defeat of Manly at Panthers Stadium.
The Canberra Raiders firm into premiership favouritism after comprehensively defeating the Melbourne Storm 22-6 at AAMI Park. It is the Raiders’ third win over the Storm in Melbourne in less than 12 months.
This article contains information from the official records of NRL historian David Middleton.