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Dragons and Roosters to honour Battle of Lone Pine anniversary

The Anzac Cup is the coveted prize on Thursday night when the Dragons and Roosters meet at WIN Stadium on the 105th anniversary of the Battle of Lone Pine.

The sides traditionally face off on Anzac Day, but due to the NRL shutdown amid the COVID-19 pandemic, that wasn't possible.

While the hype around this match hasn't quite reached the levels it would for an Anzac Day fixture, it's no less significant.

St George Illawarra coach Paul McGregor said his side are eager to "show respect for the service men and women".

"It's a great occasion every year. We lost that opportunity earlier in the year, so we get this opportunity," McGregor said.

"There was over 2000 casualties during that time [of the Battle of Lone Pine]. I read up a little bit about it and the significance it means to us.

Dragons v Roosters - Round 13

"For us, it's about going out there and, again, honouring that. We know it's not [an Anzac Day game] because certainly the build-up to that is a lot different, but we're certainly respecting the occasion."

Famously won by the Anzacs against the Ottoman Empire, the Battle of Lone Pine was staged between August 6-10 in 1915 in Gallipoli. As McGregor noted, more than 2200 Anzacs were killed or wounded.

 

In 2020 – a year like no other – our traditional ANZAC Day match and commemorations were halted… However, this Thursday night… we will remember them.

Posted by NRL - National Rugby League on Wednesday, 5 August 2020

The Anzac Cup is in the Roosters' possession after they beat the Dragons 20-10 in round seven last season.

"Any time you're fighting for a Cup like that, it's a special occasion," St George Illawarra's Tariq Sims said.

"This is no different ... Playing for such a prestigious Cup like that - it'll look pretty good on our shelf."

A pre-match Last Post ceremony will include the Ode, Last Post, a moment's silence and the Rouse.