Charles Eastes MBE

Charles Eastes played six Tests for Australia immediately after the Second World War as a robust winger, scoring two tries during his time in the Australian jumper.

Known to his mates as ‘Chucker’, Eastes is arguably the greatest winger in the history of Australian Rugby.

Unfortunately, his greatest games were played overseas, in pre-television days, which meant his deeds are remembered only by those lucky enough to have seen him in action during an injury shortened career.

Eastes had a very unique and highly effective running style that saw him raise his knees high, his thighs virtually parallel to the ground.

Along with his exceptional speed Eastes was known for his strong fend, which some historians have suggested was more like a rabbit punch than a palm, as well as a wonderful outside swerve.

He was a marvel at beating his opposition wing and the fullback in a quest for the line and is considered one of the great finishers at both State and International level.

Charlie learned his Rugby in the Sydney seaside suburb of Manly. First at Manly Intermediate High School and then with the St. Mathew’s Church juniors before gravitating to the Manly Club.

He joined the RAAF during the war, with overseas posts from April 1944 - October 1945, but still managed to get leave on Saturdays to play for his club.

It was his achievements at Club Rugby level during the war years that saw Charlie earn a call up to the NSW side and then the Wallabies, his debut coming in the Wallabies first post-war Test, against New Zealand in Dunedin in 1946.

Between 1946 and 1949 he pulled on the Gold jersey 22 times, six of which were in Test matches.

Sadly injury brought an end to what could have been an electrifying career, however Charlie was not lost to the game.

After leaving the playing field he took up a number of administrative roles, which included being appointed Manager of the Wallaby tour of South Africa in 1969.

Charlie also served as President of the Manly Club for three years, President of the Sydney Rugby Union Club for 10 years, President of the NSWRU for four years and he became a Vice- President of the ARFU.

In 1977 Charlie was awarded an MBE for his services to the game of Rugby.

Charlie ‘Chucker’ Eastes passed away in August 1995 aged 70.