Australian Rugby mourns the passing of Eric Tindall

by staff

Australian Rugby was saddened to learn of the passing of former Waratahs scrumhalf Eric “Nookie” Tindall, who passed away last Monday at the age of 69.

A Stalwart of NSW Rugby, Nookie received one Test cap playing for Australia on 30 June 1973 against Tonga in Brisbane, a match where he was fortunate enough to score a try under the posts despite Australia’s 16-11 loss.

From the Drummoyne club, Eric Tindall earned 6 NSW caps from 1969-1973. He debuted against Fiji on 26 July 1969 and his last match was as a replacement for Russell Fairfax late in the contest against Queensland at Ballymore on 13 May 1973.

Educated at Sydney Grammar School, Nookie developed into a first-class halfback, strong in attack and courageous in defence, with a long and accurate pass and the acceleration to make significant breaks. With his brother Edwin, he joined the Drummoyne Club, where they became long-time stalwarts, Nookie playing 200 first grade games and Edwin over 300.

His first opportunity at the top level came captaining Sydney against Fiji in 1969, where he scored two fine tries in the 16-31 defeat. He went on to represent NSW and captain an Australian XV, all against the same Fijian side.

In 1970 he toured New Zealand with NSW and would doubtless have earned far more caps had he not had the misfortune to compete against John Hipwell for the number nine jersey.

Outside rugby, he became Managing Director of one of Australia’s leading construction companies and his name is associated with many of the major Sydney City buildings erected in the 1980s.

He was the much loved husband of Janine, father of Nick, Jon and Sally and grandfather of William, Edward, Zachary and Willow.