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February 18: Big Willie vs SBW; Bill v Bunnies; Panther vs Panther

On this day, Willie Mason's manager talks tough on 'Money' Bill, things gets testy between Bill Harrigan and the Bunnies, and the ARL gets tough as the Super League war gets messy. 


Balmain defeat Canterbury 28-16 in a grand final “replay” to win the Alpha Romeo Challenge match at Parramatta Stadium. Tigers’ fullback Garry Jack breaks his right arm.


A simmering feud between Souths and referee Bill Harrigan erupts in a Cup match against Balmain in Parkes. Rabbitoh coach George Piggins is initially fined $10,000 for comments he made about Harrigan’s performance but the fine is later removed on appeal. 


Sea Eagles, NSW Blues and Kangaroos star Jake Trbojevic was born on this day in 1994. Today he celebrates his 26th birthday as one of the game's premier back-rowers and with an enormous future ahead of him at all levels of the game.

Sea Eagles lock Jake Trbojevic.
Sea Eagles lock Jake Trbojevic. ©Mark Dadswell/NRL Photos


St George down South Sydney 30-6 in the annual Charity Shield match.


The ARL apply for an injunction in the NSW Supreme Court to prevent Jack Elsegood and John Cross, both of whom had signed ARL loyalty contracts, from turning out for Super League clubs Canterbury and Penrith.

Jack Elsegood in action for Sydney City in the 1997 ARL competition.
Jack Elsegood in action for Sydney City in the 1997 ARL competition.


Newcastle winger Adam MacDougall is found guilty of steroid use after returning elevated testosterone and epitestosterone levels. He is permitted to serve his 22-match ban concurrently with the 11-match ban he received in 1998.


A disappointing crowd of 15,070 turns out at Melbourne’s Colonial Stadium to watch the first rugby league match played at an indoor venue. The Bulldogs beat the Storm 14-10.


Willie Mason’s manager Greg Keenan warns that the Test star will walk out on the Bulldogs at the end of the season if the club overspends on Sonny Bill Williams.


Penrith international Trent Waterhouse and rookie forward Joel Romelo were involved in a pre-season punch-up, according to Rugby League Week.


Manly international Jamie Lyon and prop Jason King are appointed Sea Eagles co-captains for 2010. In an unusual arrangement, Lyon will handle on-field captaincy duties leaving King with responsibilities off the field.


South Sydney players John Sutton, Eddy Pettybourne and Luke Burgess are placed on report for dangerous tackles as the Rabbitohs go down 18-12 to St George Illawarra in the Charity Shield at ANZ Stadium. In worse news for Souths, Luke Burgess suffers a fractured foot and faces 12-14 weeks on the sidelines.

Luke Burgess powers ahead before injuring his foot in the 2012 Charity Shield.
Luke Burgess powers ahead before injuring his foot in the 2012 Charity Shield.


Former bad boy Josh Dugan joins St George Illawarra’s leadership group that includes Ben Creagh, Dan Hunt, Brett Morris and Jason Nightingale.


Penrith prop Sam McKendry suffers a serious knee injury in his comeback game from surgery to repair his ACL in a trial against Parramatta. Fears McKendry suffered a recurrence of the injury are allayed by scans that reveal only a partial tear.


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