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Arthur Beetson in 1975.

On this day, a pair of rugby league Immortals are born and a former All Black returns to the 15-man game.

1927

Clive Churchill is born in Newcastle. The man known as "The Little Master" was one of the four original Immortals named in 1981 by Rugby League Week. As well as playing 91 matches (Test and tour games) for Australia, Churchill won five premierships as a player for South Sydney and four as a coach.

1945

Rugby League Immortal Arthur Beetson is born. A prodigious talent hailing from Roma in Queensland, Beetson is arguably the most popular man to ever play the game. Among his many great achievements, in 1973 he became the first Indigenous man to captain Australia in any sport.

Churchill’s running game helped revolutionise fullback play.
Churchill’s running game helped revolutionise fullback play. ©Rugby League Week

1973

Kiwi great and NRL Hall of Fame member Ruben Wiki is born. One of the toughest players of his era, Wiki played 55 Test matches for New Zealand and became the first NZ-born player to make 300 NRL appearances.

1996

Mark Geyer is named captain of the Western Reds for 1996. The Reds had six wins and finished 16th in the 20-team competition.

1998

Manly release former All Blacks centre Craig Innes on compassionate grounds. He would then sign with the Auckland Blues in the Super 12 rugby competition.

Greg Bird during the 2013 season.
Greg Bird during the 2013 season. ©NRL Photos

2002

The final tickets for the Charity Shield match between South Sydney and St George Illawarra are snapped up, meaning the pre-season trial is a 40,000-seat sellout.

2013

Test stars Nate Myles and Greg Bird are named co-captains of the Gold Coast Titans. The Titans missed the finals by two points, finishing ninth.

2014

South Sydney announce the signing of 34-year-old dual international Lote Tuqiri to a one-year deal.

 

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