Looking after game's heritage
The Men of League NRL Heritage Round, which had a feature match of the Dragons and Tigers back at the Sydney Cricket Ground half a century after they played in the 1965 grand final, will be completed tonight with the Manly-North Queensland match.
Men of League, which has over 26,000 members and more than 40 local committees nationwide, do a marvellous job helping many, many people with welfare visits, financial assistance and general help to the rugby league community.
The Aquis Titans have been involved in several initiatives this week to assist Men of League, including wearing the Heritage socks in the clash with the Knights and selling the socks to raise funds.
And before the Aquis Titans headed off to Newcastle for their clash at Hunter Stadium, local committee members Greg Sylvester, Greg Russell and dual international Bob Honan dropped into training and watched the team training and caught up with the players.
Greg Bird swapped stories with the three-some, including Honan who was part of the premiership-winning Rabbitohs of the 1967-71 during which they played in five successive grand finals, winning four.
Originally from Brisbane, he moved to the Gold Coast in the mid- 1970s where he had a successful and varied business background. After retiring he has supported his former Souths teammate, Men of League national chairman Ron Coote, in helping the league community around the Gold Coast.
“To me Men of League is an extension of what the game has always been about, getting together and helping each other,” Honan said.
“I get great pleasure out of visiting blokes who may be doing it tough and talking about footy, and the old days as well as current, and seeing them get a lift.
“We held financially when we can too and we get good support from some of the Titans boys like Greg Bird.
“Rugby league has changed a lot since my day but it’s still more about camaraderie than money.”
Bird, who often attends the Men of League’s big functions of the year, was glad to catch up with the local committeemen in Heritage Round week which saw the Titans as one of several teams wear the Men of League socks in their matches.
“It’s great what they do for the rugby league community and it was good talking to them about the game in Bob’s time and now.”
The Gold Coast Men of League committee has Burleigh Bears club manager Ian Amos as its respected chairman and a hard-working band of workers. To become involved email: GoldCoast@menofleague.com
PICTURED: Men of League's Greg Russell, Bob Honan and Greg Sylvester with Titan Greg Bird.