NSW Waratahs name their inaugural Hall of Fame Inductees

Tue, Jun 18, 2024, 9:00 PM
Waratahs Media
by Waratahs Media
Nick Farr-Jones gets a pass away under pressure.
Nick Farr-Jones gets a pass away under pressure.

The NSW Waratahs 2024 Season Awards Night had a unique and prestigious twist last night with the club unveiling their inaugural list of Hall of Fame inductees and the Alumni Capping Presentation.

CLICK HERE to see the full list of 2024 NSW Waratahs Season Awards winners.

Throughout the storied 150-year history of Rugby Union in NSW, there is an abundance of legendary names which have donned the famous cambridge blue Waratahs jersey.

So, as you can imagine, coming up with the inaugural Hall of Fame was no easy task.

At a Board Meeting in February this year, a Sub-Committee comprising of Matt Burke (President), John Morrison (Deputy Chair), Steve Johnson (NSWRU Honorary Archivist/statistician), Ian Kennedy (Former Waratah Coach), Ron Graham (Life Member), Larry Thomson (Country Women’s Rugby), Erin Morton (Sydney Women’s Rugby) and Mark Green (Admin) was formed to name the inaugural Waratahs Hall of Fame.

In total, there were 47 male inductees and 15 female inductees.

For the male inductees, it was agreed that the ‘Greatest Team Ever’ that was announced in 1999 for the NSW Rugby Union’s 125th anniversary be included as inductees.

It was also decided that all 13 Waratahs who are in the Wallabies Hall of Fame be included as inductees.

The Sub-Committee then reviewed a long list of Waratahs players by decade. In an effort to refine the search, it was agreed that one player per decade be selected for inclusion.

In regards to the women inductees, between 2002 and 2017 there was no NSW Waratahs Women’s team selected.  Instead during these years Sydney and Country participated at National Championships in their own right.

This was due to the strength of these respective teams and in turn the lack of strength of other State teams.  As such there are several players, who through no fault of their own, are listed as inductees but never had the opportunity to represent the Waratahs (only Sydney/Country and then the Wallaroos).

The Hall of Fame, including legendary figures such as David Campese, Bronnie Mackintosh, Simon Poidevin, and Phil Waugh, was presented to the crowd at the conclusion of the night to a rousing standing ovation.

NSW Waratahs Hall of Fame Inductees

Name

Ted Raper

Stan Wickham

Fred Wood

Dally Messenger

Paddy Moran

Larry Wogan

Johnnie Wallace

Jock Blackwood

Bob Loudon

Wally Meagher

Wylie Breckenridge

Alec Ross

Jack Ford

Cyril Towers

Bill Cerutti

Aub Hodgson

Russell Kelly

Trevor Allan

Cyril Burke

Sir Nick Shehadie

Col Windon

John Solomon

David Brockhoff

Tony Miller

Rod Phelps

John Thornett

Rob Heming

Jim Lenehan

Ken Catchpole

Peter Johnson

Dick Thornett

Greg Davis

Roy Prosser

John Hipwell

Charlie Eastes

Jon White

Reg Smith

Mark Ella

Simon Poidevin

Steve Tuynman

Nick Farr-Jones

Tim Gavin

David Campese

Phil Kearns

Matt Burke

Karen Lambert

Nicole Wickert

Charmain Steventon

Rebecca Cleary

Kelly Sager

Bronnie Mackintosh

Danielle Meskell

Louise Ferris

Pearl Kaleopa-Palaiali'i

Phil Waugh

Lisa Fiaola

Cheryl McAfee

Tui Ormsby

Kelly (Chris) Ross

Benn Robinson

Tobie McGann

Margaret Watson

Debut / Span

1182 - 1883

1895 - 1906

1905 - 1906

1906 - 1907

1906 - 1908

1912 - 1924

1921 - 1928

1922 - 1928

1923 - 1934

1923 - 1929

1925 - 1930

1925 - 1934

1925 - 1930

1926 - 1938

1927 - 1939

1930 - 1939

1933 - 1939

1946 - 1950

1946 - 1958

1946 - 1957

1946 - 1953

1948 - 1955

1949 - 1954

1952 - 1969

1955 - 1963

1955 - 1966

1958 - 1966

1958 - 1967

1959 - 1968

1959 - 1971

1961

1963 - 1972

1963 - 1972

1968 - 1981

1946 - 1951

1959 - 1966

1970 - 1978

1979 - 1984

1979 - 1992

1982 - 1990

1984 - 1993

1987 - 1997

1987 - 1998

1989 - 1999

1992 - 2004

1994

1995

1996

1996

1996

1997

1999

1999

1999

1999 - 2011

2000

2002

2002

2003

2004 - 2016

2005

2005

Caps

11

37

45

12

6

37

33

55

39

29

38

66

50

85

58

28

28

17

37

37

26

19

14

36

13

21

16

21

26

34

4

27

24

27

15

12

26

25

58

33

46

83

56

73

115

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

-

136

-

-

-

-

155

-

-

Terms of Reference for Future Inductees

  • The NSW Waratahs Hall of Fame provides the foremost recognition of NSW Rugby players who have achieved outstanding success on the field.  However, a players off-field activities would be a consideration but not the main consideration. 
  • On-field performance includes – number of caps, points, leadership, awards and accolades, records, years of playing/longevity, consistency and sportsmanship. 
  • Players need to be retired from playing the game for 5 years.
  • Consideration of the number of games played for NSW compared to other teams is a factor.
  • It was agreed that up to 5 players could be inducted annually from 2025.  After the initial intake in 2024.
  • A list of Inductees would be publicly displayed at the NSWRU Centre of Excellence.

Process for Induction

  • Via nomination by the NSW Rugby / Waratah Board.
  • Via nomination by the “Hall of Fame” Sub-Committee.
  • Via nomination by third party (i.e. player, club, supporter, family). 
  • Annually, the NSWRU will publicly call for nominations for the Hall of Fame.

Alumni Capping Presentation

The night also featured a special NSW Waratahs Alumni Capping Presentation. In 2024, all 25 male and female debutants received a cap for their Waratahs debuts.

But between 1950 and 2012, the NSW Waratahs didn’t award debutants with a cap in honour of their first match for the club.

Instead, the debutants were presented with blazers.

Similarly, women’s caps weren’t handed out between 1993 to 2017, until the Super Rugby W commenced in 2018.

In a proud moment for the club, the Waratahs presented caps to all present alumni that missed out on caps for their debuts.

The oldest living Waratah Donald Strachan and the President of NSW Rugby Union and a Waratahs legend in his own right, Matt Burke, had the honour of presenting the caps to the present alumni.

“Rugby Union in NSW has a proud history across 150 years, and an exciting future ahead,” CEO Paul Doorn said.

“This was a special initiative to honour some of our greatest ever players as well as pay tribute to past alumni that missed out on their debutant caps during their playing careers.”

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