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February 4: Super League is launched; Rhinos put bite on Bulldogs; GI injury blow

On this day, the birth of a proud foundation club, the launch of Super League, and Rhinos put the bite on Bulldogs in World Club Challenge.


The Western Suburbs club is formed at a meeting at the Ashfield Town Hall.


Canberra Raiders star Jack Wighton was born on this day in 1993. Wighton made his NRL debut in 2012 and has played 199 games for the Green Machine. He enjoyed a stellar season in 2019, helping the Raiders to the grand final and making his Origin debut for NSW and Test debut for the Kangaroos. He backed that up in 2020 by taking out the game's highest individual honour the Dally M Medal. He was part of the Blues' Origin series wins in 2019 and 2021.

Jack Wighton wins 2020 Dally M Medal


Andrew and Matthew Johns star for Newcastle in their club’s World Sevens victory at the Sydney Football Stadium. Ironically, embattled clubs Gold Coast and St George win minor divisions of the competition. Total crowds for the two-day event top 37,000.


Super League is officially launched in Australia by Canberra’s Laurie Daley.

Laurie Daley and John Ribot shake on it at the Super League launch in 1997.
Laurie Daley and John Ribot shake on it at the Super League launch in 1997.


David Gallop is officially appointed the new chief executive of the NRL.


Checks reveal that St George Illawarra captain Trent Barrett suffered a broken ankle at the same time that he ruptured a posterior cruciate ligament in his knee during the Sevens competition. He is expected to miss the first six weeks of the premiership.


Leeds extend the dominance of British clubs over their Australian counterparts in the World Club Challenge with a 39-32 defeat of the Bulldogs at Elland Road. The Bulldogs fight back from a 26-6 half-time deficit but cannot bridge the gap.


Newcastle winger Trent Salkeld is ruled out of the entire 2007 season after being diagnosed with nephrotic syndrome, the same kidney disease that ended the career of All Blacks legend Jonah Lomu.


The NRL’s One Community Carnival commences with 107 players visiting 50 communities from Darwin to the Mornington Peninsula.

NRL stars go bush in 2009.
NRL stars go bush in 2009.


An ankle injury to South Sydney superstar Greg Inglis overshadows the NRL All Stars’ 36-28 victory over the Indigenous All Stars at Skilled Park. Scans reveal a minor fracture that is expected to sideline Inglis for four to six weeks. The champion makes it back to the field a month later for the Bunnies' round one clash with the Roosters. 

Greg Inglis is helped from the field during the 2012 All Stars game.
Greg Inglis is helped from the field during the 2012 All Stars game.


South Sydney coach Michael Maguire commits himself to the club for four years after signing a new $3.2 million contract.


Canterbury sign leading British prop Luke Thompson from St Helens to a three-year deal, starting in 2021. With Super League suspended due to COVID 19, Thompson came to Australia early and made his NRL debut in round nine of the 2020 season against Brisbane.


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

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National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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