1981 Grand Final Re-imagined:
Newtown vs. Parramatta
Sunday 26th September, 3pm

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Two outstanding identities with many years of association with the Newtown RLFC, Colin Murphy (left) and Johnny Lewis, lead the teams out at Henson Park on Saturday while carrying a number seven jersey in honour of the late Tom Raudonikis.


Michael Magee Photography.
Two outstanding identities with many years of association with the Newtown RLFC, Colin Murphy (left) and Johnny Lewis, lead the teams out at Henson Park on Saturday while carrying a number seven jersey in honour of the late Tom Raudonikis. Photo: Michael Magee Photography.

A Fine Tribute day to Tommy, but an Ordinary Rugby League Result

The Newtown RLFC turned on a splendid tribute day for their former club captain and inspirational leader Tom Raudonikis at Henson Park on Saturday.

There was a big crowd in attendance and the Newtown club received complimentary remarks from several quarters for the dignity and integrity with which the tribute ceremonies for the late Tom Raudonikis had been conducted

The rugby league content of the afternoon was somewhat of a letdown. The Jets began with great energy and looked to have the measure of the Newcastle Knights for most of the first half. The Knights led 18-12 at halftime, although Newtown had scored three tries to two, with all three of these tries being scored by the impressive young winger Jonaiah Lualua.

The Knights put on three quick tries early in the second half, extending their lead to 34-12 and effectively taking  the game beyond Newtown’s reach. The Jets responded with two more tries, one a remarkably determined effort by halfback Braydon Trindall and a fourth to Jonaiah Lualua. The Knights scored another converted try to boost the final score to 42-22 in their favour.

In his post-match assessment, coach Greg Matterson identified Newtown’s key problem as being a succession of errors that were compounded by conceding penalties and “six-again” possession opportunities. The Knights also took full advantage of several defensive lapses when the Jets had been under pressure for extended periods at their own end of the field.

Newtown’s front-rowers Daniel Vasquez and Brock Gray had strong games, and the talented Jonaiah Lualua had the unusual rugby league experience of scoring four tries for a losing team.

As the Knock-On Effect NSW Cup competition moves into the seventh round, the Jets badly need to regain winning form when they take on the Canterbury-Bankstown partnership club, Mounties, at Henson Park next Saturday, 24th April, at 3.00pm.

NSWRL Knock-On Effect NSW Cup – Round Six

Saturday, 17th April 2021

Henson Park

Newtown v Newcastle Knights

Kick-Off: 3.00pm.

Playing surface: Excellent.

Weather: 18 degrees, overcast, 50% humidity, NNE wind 10 km/ph.

Referee: Keiren Irons.

Touch Judges: Clayton Wills, Rickey McFarlane.

Newcastle Knights 42 (Simi Sasagi, Luke Huth, Garrett Smith, Nicholas O’Meley, Ben Talty, McKenzie Baker, Gehamat Shibasaki tries; Zane Camroux 6 conversions, 1 penalty goal) def. Newtown 22 Jonaiah Lualua 4, Braydon Trindall tries; Braydon Trindall 1 penalty goal).

Half-Time: Newcastle Knights led 18-12.

Newtown’s team was:

Luke Metcalf, Edward Aiono, Dylan O’Connor, Jensen Taumoepaeu, Jonaiah Lualua, Jack A. Williams, Braydon Trindall, Billy Magoulias, D’Rhys Miller, Bronson Garlick, Brock Gray, Kyle Paterson, Daniel Vasquez.

Interchange: Gabe Hamlin, Zac Woolford, Franklin Pele, Kayleb Milne.

Reserve: Brock Ilett.

Coach: Greg Matterson.

Newcastle Knights:
Zane Camroux, Gehamat Shibasaki, Dylan Lucas, Nicholas O’Meley, Jacob Kiraz, Simi Sasagi, McKenzie Baker, Jack Johns, Zac Hosking, Ben Talty, Matt Croker, Luke Huth, Pasami Saulo.

Interchange: Liam Wilkinson, Garrett Smith, Jaron Purcell, John Toleafoa.

Reserve: Christopher Weaila,

Coach: Andrew Ryan.

Newtown’s next match:
NSWRL Knock-On Effect NSW Cup – Round Seven

Saturday, 24th April 2021

Henson Park

Newtown v Mounties (who are now a partnership club with Canterbury-Bankstown).

Kick-Off: 3.00pm.

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This week’s sponsor in focus is – SMI Sports Medicine Institute

Chris Lane’s panoramic shot of ANZ Stadium after fulltime on the 6th October captures the unbridled elation of the Newtown Jets after their astounding last-minute victory.

Recalling the extraordinary events at ANZ Stadium on Sunday, 6th October 2019

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This week the Newtown RLFC pays tribute to the tremendous support given to our club by The Henson, conveniently located close to our home ground, Henson Park

Tom Raudonikis celebrates after scoring a try in the 1981 NSWRL Grand Final (colourised by

Remembering forty years ago ….

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This week we gratefully acknowledge the staunch support of the Coverforce organisation, who have been sponsoring the Newtown RLFC since 2014

Newtown forever - The Class of 1981. Image: Newtown RLFC Archives

1981 Grand Final Re-imagined

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