The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & the Knights Sudden Death Showdown.

We are proud to present our 50th show, a big milestone for the podcast & we wish to thank everyone who has listened & supported us since we began in July 2019. Also a big thanks to all the people who have given up their time to share their stories with us on the show, every one of you have added an extra dimension to the listening experience we present each week.

On the podcast this week we recap the record 60-8 hammering of the Roosters, we talk to Rabbitohs enforcer Jaydn Su’A & exciting winger Jaxson Paulo, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & we preview the sudden death semi final clash with the Knights.

Jaydn Su’A #1153 – South Sydney Player Report

South Sydney back-rower Jaydn Su’A has been outstanding this season in his first full year with the club.

Jaxson “Rockstar” Paulo #1159 – South Sydney Player Report

‘Freak’ Paulo’s NRL debut excites Souths

Standing 192cm and weighing 101kg, Paulo has impressed his teammates since arriving at Redfern from the Gold Coast midway through last year.

“Jaxson’s a freak, that’s all I can really say,” second-rower Jaydn Su’A said on Wednesday.

“He’s very tall, he’s good under the high ball and he’s got some pace, so I’m sure he will do his job really well this weekend.

“Hopefully we can get him into the game because the more he touches the ball the better for us.”

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As we celebrate our 50th episode with over 60k total downloads to date we can proudly say that we haven’t missed a week of the entire 2020 NRL season even when there was no games being played due to Covid-19, we kept going because as the saying goes the show must go on. In the video below we take a look back & present our 1st show from July 2019. It’s very raw but it was a start & we think we’ve come a long way since then.

Where it all began

Each year we plan to continue producing a podcast every game of the season & the finals regardless of whether the Bunnies go all the way or not. We’ll then have a break during the off season but on selected weeks still present a couple of special moments in sport episodes, a summer edition & a pre season show.

Below is our 1st ever interview from episode 2 in July 2019, a quick chat with Les Davidson.

Listen to all 50 episodes here

Leslie Gordon “Les” “Chicka” Cowie #350 – South Sydney Player Report

Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie

South Sydney Dream Team

The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown. RABBITOHS RADIO

We are proud to present our 50th show, a big milestone for the podcast & we wish to thank everyone who has listened & supported us since we began in July 2019. Also a big thanks to all the people who have given up their time to share their stories with us on the show, every one of you have added an extra dimension to the listening experience we present each week. On the podcast this week we recap the record 60-8 hammering of the Roosters, we talk to Rabbitohs enforcer Jaydn Su’A & exciting winger Jaxson Paulo, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & we preview the sudden death semi final clash with the Knights. https://rabbitohsradio.com.au/2020/09/24/the-rooster-demolition-jaydn-sua-jaxson-paulo-les-chicka-cowie-the-knights-sudden-death-showdown/
  1. The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown.
  2. Luke Curry, Ken Stewart & the Chooks
  3. Katie Brown, Lex, Women In League, Phil Blake & the Bulldogs
  4. Jack Johns, Lummy & the Tigers
  5. Mark Nicholls, Eric Lewis & The Storm

Jack Johns, Lummy & the Tigers

On the podcast this week we speak to Souths rookie Jack Johns, Remembering A Rabbitoh is Kevin ‘Lummy’ Longbottom & we preview the West Tigers clash.

Jack Johns

Jack Johns #1160 – South Sydney Player Report

Rabbitoh Gallery

Kevin James “Lummy” Longbottom #485 – South Sydney Player Report

Jai Arrow revealed Gold Coast teammate ‘butchered’ mullet

The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown. RABBITOHS RADIO

We are proud to present our 50th show, a big milestone for the podcast & we wish to thank everyone who has listened & supported us since we began in July 2019. Also a big thanks to all the people who have given up their time to share their stories with us on the show, every one of you have added an extra dimension to the listening experience we present each week. On the podcast this week we recap the record 60-8 hammering of the Roosters, we talk to Rabbitohs enforcer Jaydn Su’A & exciting winger Jaxson Paulo, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & we preview the sudden death semi final clash with the Knights. https://rabbitohsradio.com.au/2020/09/24/the-rooster-demolition-jaydn-sua-jaxson-paulo-les-chicka-cowie-the-knights-sudden-death-showdown/
  1. The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown.
  2. Luke Curry, Ken Stewart & the Chooks
  3. Katie Brown, Lex, Women In League, Phil Blake & the Bulldogs
  4. Jack Johns, Lummy & the Tigers
  5. Mark Nicholls, Eric Lewis & The Storm

Steven Marsters, Les Brennan & The Rabbits Roll On

On the podcast this week we speak to Rabbitohs rookie Steven Marsters, feature Bunnies legend Les Brennan & preview Thursdays huge Ees clash.

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Steven Marsters #1161

Steven Marsters Wikipedia

Steven Marsters – South Sydney Player Report

Steven Marsters Career Stats

Bennett sacking ultimatum brings Marsters back to the light

Les Brennan #421

Les Brennan – South Sydney Player Report

Les Brennan: Rabbitoh No. 421

RABBITOHS 56 – SEA EAGLES 16 – ROUND 15 – SATURDAY 22ND AUGUST 2020

The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown. RABBITOHS RADIO

We are proud to present our 50th show, a big milestone for the podcast & we wish to thank everyone who has listened & supported us since we began in July 2019. Also a big thanks to all the people who have given up their time to share their stories with us on the show, every one of you have added an extra dimension to the listening experience we present each week. On the podcast this week we recap the record 60-8 hammering of the Roosters, we talk to Rabbitohs enforcer Jaydn Su’A & exciting winger Jaxson Paulo, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & we preview the sudden death semi final clash with the Knights. https://rabbitohsradio.com.au/2020/09/24/the-rooster-demolition-jaydn-sua-jaxson-paulo-les-chicka-cowie-the-knights-sudden-death-showdown/
  1. The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown.
  2. Luke Curry, Ken Stewart & the Chooks
  3. Katie Brown, Lex, Women In League, Phil Blake & the Bulldogs
  4. Jack Johns, Lummy & the Tigers
  5. Mark Nicholls, Eric Lewis & The Storm
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Rabbitohs Radio Retro Stickers

Rabbitohs Membership

All three of us are Rabbitohs members. Chaps is a ticketed member #12433 with seats directly opposite the tunnel at ANZ Stadium. Mavo member #2217679 & Browny #1434904 are supporter members of the club. Membership starts at just $99 per year & it’s a fantastic & important way to support our club. We don’t have a rich leagues club providing us with revenue streams but we do have a huge fan base. If you’re not a member click the image below to join today.

Garlo, The Falcon & beating the Broncos

On the podcast this week we have former Souths captain Sean Garlick, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Mario Fenech & we preview Friday nights big Broncos clash.

Sean Garlick

Sean Garlick Wikipedia

Sean Terence Garlick #783 – South Sydney Player Report

Garlo’s Pies Meet The Team

Captain in Focus: Sean Garlick

Remembering a Rabbitoh Mario Fenech

Mario “Test Match” Fenech #689 – South Sydney Player Report

Season 1 Episode 10 Mario, Maroon & Manly 18/9/2019

Captain in Focus: Mario Fenech

Ryan McGhee

Ryan McGhee from Tennessee USA found rugby league when there was no sport on TV due to the Covid-19 shutdown. He discovered the Rabbitohs & has adopted us as his club.

Ryan says he’s fallen in love with the game because of the pace of play and the unique aspect the kicking game brings to it. He said he watches live NRL on Fox Sports 1 & it suits him because he has a 1 year old who gets up at 6am when the games are on. Ryan said that he’s loves the Rabbitohs Radio podcast teams passion for the sport and the Rabbitohs.

Ryan hosts a Curling podcast called Rocks Across the Pond & he’s a huge Virginia Tech Hokies fans & tailgater. His crew has about 10RVs that all park close to each other & have a big party at games.

So Ryan is a now a Bunnies man but he will fit right in with us & here’s why.

The tailgate fans are mad supporters much like the Burrow. They get together, bbq, drink & cheer their team.

Curling is like lawn bowls on ice & Ryan says “Curling is a Scottish game deeply rooted in sportsmanship that starts with a handshake and ends with the winning team buying the first round.” What’s not to like about that?

Ryan is a sports nut just like us, welcome aboard mate, up the Mighty Rabbitohs!

Rabbitoh Gallery

Support Darrin Voss

Gleek the Greek on 2SM Talking Sport

Your Guide to Parking at The Juniors

Treasures at The Juniors

Latrell Mitchell, Eric Simms, Munkimuk & Dan The Man

The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown. RABBITOHS RADIO

We are proud to present our 50th show, a big milestone for the podcast & we wish to thank everyone who has listened & supported us since we began in July 2019. Also a big thanks to all the people who have given up their time to share their stories with us on the show, every one of you have added an extra dimension to the listening experience we present each week. On the podcast this week we recap the record 60-8 hammering of the Roosters, we talk to Rabbitohs enforcer Jaydn Su’A & exciting winger Jaxson Paulo, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & we preview the sudden death semi final clash with the Knights. https://rabbitohsradio.com.au/2020/09/24/the-rooster-demolition-jaydn-sua-jaxson-paulo-les-chicka-cowie-the-knights-sudden-death-showdown/
  1. The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown.
  2. Luke Curry, Ken Stewart & the Chooks
  3. Katie Brown, Lex, Women In League, Phil Blake & the Bulldogs
  4. Jack Johns, Lummy & the Tigers
  5. Mark Nicholls, Eric Lewis & The Storm

Our Rabbitohs Radio Sponsors

Latrell Mitchell, Eric Simms, Munkimuk & Dan The Man

On our Indigenous Round podcast we interview Latrell Mitchell & also chat to the legendary Munkimuk. Our Remembering A Rabbitoh is Eric Simms & we hear from Danny Allende.

Latrell Mitchell #1154

Latrell Mitchell – South Sydney Player Report

Eric Simms #540

Eric Simms – South Sydney Player Report

Indigenous Rugby League Team of the Century

Munkimuk

Munkimuk Wikipedia

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Danny Allende

The forgotten story of … Claude Williams, the Rabbitohs’ sport-hopper

Rabbitoh Gallery

“Theres something special about this club”: Big Tom Burgess on Benny, Bunnies and calling Australia home

Get the Winning Edge with Reading the Play

Special thanks to Brad Ryder & Mark Sivis from SSR Almanac

Thomas Burgess, John Peek & The Red & Green Machine

On the show this week we speak to Rabbitohs legend Thomas Burgess, we feature John Peek & have a chat with the Green Machine podcast.

Thomas Burgess #1096

Thomas “Tom” Burgess – South Sydney Player Report

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On the podcast Tom talks about the historic game in 2013 he played with his three brothers at the 38.00 in this video

GRAND FINAL – SUNDAY 5TH OCTOBER 2014

Tom Burgess caught up with Russell Crowe, Anne Hathaway & Sacha Baron Cohen on the set of Les Miserables

Rabbitoh Gallery

John Peek #639

John Peek – South Sydney Player Report

The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown. RABBITOHS RADIO

We are proud to present our 50th show, a big milestone for the podcast & we wish to thank everyone who has listened & supported us since we began in July 2019. Also a big thanks to all the people who have given up their time to share their stories with us on the show, every one of you have added an extra dimension to the listening experience we present each week. On the podcast this week we recap the record 60-8 hammering of the Roosters, we talk to Rabbitohs enforcer Jaydn Su’A & exciting winger Jaxson Paulo, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & we preview the sudden death semi final clash with the Knights. https://rabbitohsradio.com.au/2020/09/24/the-rooster-demolition-jaydn-sua-jaxson-paulo-les-chicka-cowie-the-knights-sudden-death-showdown/
  1. The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown.
  2. Luke Curry, Ken Stewart & the Chooks
  3. Katie Brown, Lex, Women In League, Phil Blake & the Bulldogs
  4. Jack Johns, Lummy & the Tigers
  5. Mark Nicholls, Eric Lewis & The Storm

Mr There and Back: How Col Whelan got hitched to Souths, photography and life on the road

Colin Whelan was a rugby league photographer for 34 years. He’s also an author, traveller and brilliant story-teller. Steve Mavin, co-host of the Rabbitohs Radio Podcast, so enjoyed listening to Col’s yarns on the show that he wrote up a yarn so good it needs three parts. This is the first one. It begins with Whelan hitch-hiking across Australia, ends with a favour from “Break Even” Bill Mordey. Enjoy the ride. 

During my career playing for the Rabbitohs in the late 80s and early 90s, Col Whelan was always on the sideline taking pictures. 

Although I’d say hello we never really got to know each other, and it’s only since he joined our Facebook group Rabbitohs Radio Podcast Listeners that we began to regularly communicate. 

Col has also graciously shared many old Souths images from his lifetime behind the lens, and we’ve been lapping up the interesting commentary it generates.

The Rabbitohs Radio Podcast team – Grant ChappellDarren Brown and myself – interviewed Col in our studio in June. As soon as our chat began we knew it was going to be a great one.

And while it’s very hard to do justice to telling the stories of a master story-teller, I’m going to have a crack.

Colin Whelan was born in Sydney in 1951 but grew up without rugby league in Adelaide and then in Perth. In 1963 the Whelan family moved back to Sydney, lived in Kensington and Col enrolled at Sydney Boys High where in 1964 he discovered rugby and rugby league.

And hitch-hiking.

Col started hitching from an early age after being inspired by Jack Kerouac‘s On The Road. Aged 13, to honour a bet with a mate, Col stuck out his thumb to see if he could hitch rides from Sydney to Perth and back. He completed the feat in eleven days. He had his mother’s blessing.

The adventure instilled a love of travelling in Col and an appreciation for “the intimacy of the road”.

Les from La Perouse was Col’s first mate at school. Les had only one stipulation about their friendship: “You have to barrack for Souths”. So Col did and they remain good mates to this day. 

The night before the famous 1965 grand final between the Dragons and Rabbitohs – the one that saw a record crowd of 78,056 cram into the SCG – Col and Les left school, walked across Moore Park in their uniforms, and slept behind the Brewongle Stand. In the morning the boys emerged undetected and watched the game. So the crowd figure should be 78,058!

Experiences like this, Whelan said, meant he was “bitten by the red and green monster, and there was no antidote.”

In 1969 Col became the first (and still only) Prefect to be expelled from Sydney Boys High because of his refusal to stop protesting against the war in Vietnam.

Col had begun drinking in pubs after school and became a regular at Jim Buckley’s Newcastle Hotel on George St, The Rocks. At this establishment he met several brilliant authors who would shape his life.

At the Newcastle Col met Donald Horne who’d written The Lucky Country in 1964, Germaine Greer whose breakout book The Female Eunuch came out in 1972, and Frank Hardy (below) whose Power Without Glory is one of the most infamous books in Australian history.

Frank Hardy left his Marx on the sands of the northern beaches ...

Col was taken under Frank’s wing and learned the etiquette of pubs; about drinking and of shouting. He learned about telling yarns. He learned the difference between telling stories and sharing them. He learned to listen. 

Col went to work at the Commodore Tavern in North Sydney which he described as “a working-class pub that was very rough”.

One day George the publican asked Col to check what was blocking the toilet. Col discovered a Beretta pistol was hidden in the pull-chain cistern. George told Col to leave it there. A few days later it was gone, no-one the wiser about its owner.

The highlight of Col’s working week was when the beer truck arrived each Thursday with Paul Sait and Ron Coote delivering the amber fluid.

“I’d see two of my heroes and they were just normal blokes, real down-to-earth guys,” Whelan said. “I was working once a week with my idols, the guys I’d watch play on the weekend.”

Col went to Macquarie University from 1970-72 and played rugby union. When he left he hitchhiked (of course) from Burma (now Thailand) to Copenhagen in Sweden, a trip which took him across Afghanistan and other places now off limits.

He hitchhiked to North Africa and the Middle East. He followed the Grateful Dead’s tour of Europe and developed a love of opium and hashish. He spent five months working on an opium farm in Turkey and six months on a hashish plantation in Lebanon’s Beka’a Valley.

He was briefly held by the Syrian secret police for photographing where he shouldn’t have been. He headed to Jordan and Israel. He worked with Bedouins. He lived on a kibbutz in the Negev desert.

In 1976 Col returned home to Sydney with an Israeli woman, Naomi, who became his wife and the mother of their twins, a boy Jesse and daughter Natalie who were born in 1988 through IVF. 

And he wondered what to do.

“I came home and thought what do I want to do?” Whelan said. “I had an interest in football and photography so I started teaching myself how to take photos.

“I started snapping pics at rugby games but at first I was terrible. So I would just give my photos away to players. There was no money in it.”

One day a phone call came from Gary Pearse that would change Col’s life. Pearse, a former Wallabies backrower, worked in marketing for Winfield, needed a photographer for the company’s new Winfield Cup sponsorship. After seeing Col’s action shots, a job offer came from John Quayle at the NSWRL followed by an opportunity at Big League Magazine thanks to “Break Even” Bill Mordey.

And a super sports snapper was born.

Stay tuned for Part 2 in which we talk to Col about his adventures as an NRL photographer, and Part 3 in which we talk about his cracking book about bush pubs. You can follow Col Whelan on Facebook at Nothing But The Pub or email him to say hello at idrink@nothingbutthepub.com.

Or have a listen to the chat with the man here:

Special thanks to Matt Cleary from League Whistle

Peter Tunks, Greg Hawick & the defeat of the Dogs

On our huge show this week we feature 2 of the greatest rugby league players of all time Peter Tunks & Greg Hawick.

Peter Tunks

Peter Tunks Wikipedia

“Blocker Always Started It”: Peter Tunks Recalls His Fierce Rivalry With Steve ‘Blocker’ Roach

2SM Talkin Sport

Greg Hawick First Grade Player #397

Greg Hawick Wikipedia

Vale Greg Hawick

The Ultimate Utility: Greg Hawick

Greg Hawick Museaum Of The Riverina

GREG HAWICK MEN OF LEAGUE

Alexandria Rovers “Best Of” Team

Greg Hawick Rugby League Project

Thanks to Brad Ryder who knew Greg & his wife Maureen well & Marco Sivis for their contributions on Greg Hawick. Click the link below to visit Marcos SSR Almanac Greg Hawick player profile-

Gregory Rawson “Greg” “Megsie” Hawick – South Sydney Player Report

Rabbitoh Gallery

Pinocchio’s

Rabbitoh Of The Week Andréa Mandadakis

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The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown. RABBITOHS RADIO

We are proud to present our 50th show, a big milestone for the podcast & we wish to thank everyone who has listened & supported us since we began in July 2019. Also a big thanks to all the people who have given up their time to share their stories with us on the show, every one of you have added an extra dimension to the listening experience we present each week. On the podcast this week we recap the record 60-8 hammering of the Roosters, we talk to Rabbitohs enforcer Jaydn Su’A & exciting winger Jaxson Paulo, our remembering a Rabbitoh is Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & we preview the sudden death semi final clash with the Knights. https://rabbitohsradio.com.au/2020/09/24/the-rooster-demolition-jaydn-sua-jaxson-paulo-les-chicka-cowie-the-knights-sudden-death-showdown/
  1. The Rooster Demolition, Jaydn Su’A, Jaxson Paulo, Les ‘Chicka’ Cowie & The Knights Sudden Death Showdown.
  2. Luke Curry, Ken Stewart & the Chooks
  3. Katie Brown, Lex, Women In League, Phil Blake & the Bulldogs
  4. Jack Johns, Lummy & the Tigers
  5. Mark Nicholls, Eric Lewis & The Storm

Arthur Stephen ‘ASH’ Hennessy – Rabbitoh #1 & the 1908 Bunnies

Preface

I’ve always been fascinated by the year the South Sydney Rabbitohs began in 1908. The focal point of the this tale is Arthur Stephen Hennessy nickname A.S.H & I was immediately drawn to the fact that we share the name Stephen spelt with the PH. ASH is Rabbitoh first grade player #1 & I’m #757, he made his debut in 1908 & mine was 1987 but we are both Stephens & Rabbitohs players so for me we share an affinity. I realise it’s only his middle name, the S in the acronym ASH but the man known as the ‘Father Of The Rabbitohs’ and I both suited up for the mighty Rabbits & didn’t spell our name Steven with the V. (Yes I do answer to the shortened version Steve but that’s beside the point!)

The most satisfying discovery I made was to uncover the fact that the first rugby league game ever played in Australia was held on the 21st of March 1908 at Sir Joseph Banks Park Botany. On this historic day a South Sydney Possibles & Probables trial match was played. I was born & bred in Botany, played for the Botany Rams & still live here today but I never knew about this game that ASH took part in was played at a park that I roamed as a kid.

In The Beginning…

The story of the Rabbitohs inaugural season in 1908 & their eventual victory in the first ever Australian rugby league grand final is a tale that Rabbitohs fans will cherish forever.

Stories will endlessly be told about the clubs Redfern origins, it’s 11-7 victory over North Sydney the first time the team took the field & the march to glory over the Roosters in the grand final at the end of that season.

This article takes you through some key points of this time & highlights the involvement of the ‘Father Of The Rabbitohs’ Arthur Hennessy.

Rugby League broke away from Rugby Union in the late 1800s for the simple reason that players weren’t being paid. The greatest game of all was born in England in 1895.

The beginning of South Sydney traces back to early meetings in the Australian test cricketer Victor Trumper’s shop. Trumper is one of the most important figures in the club’s formation.

Five other men also played huge roles in creating the Rabbitohs – Arthur Hennessy, S. George Ball, Johnny McGrath, Billy Cann & Ed “Son” Fry. Early meetings were held in 1907, plans were hatched then finally a meeting took place on 17th January 1908 at Redfern Town Hall Sydney to form the South Sydney District Rugby League Club.

Pictured – Billy Cann, Arthur Hennessy, SG Ball, Johnny McGrath
Redfern Town Hall in 1871

Arthur Stephen Hennessy (nickname ASH) was born in Sydney on the 24th September 1876. Hennessy played hooker & although only a small man at 5ft 8ins (173cm) & 12st. 6lbs. (79kg) he would become a star rugby union player winning a competition with Souths Rugby Union in 1905 & gaining NSW representative honours.

By the time he finally helped create the NSWRL & the Rabbitohs, Hennessy was 31 years old so his career as a rugby league player was relatively short but he would go on to become the first captain of NSW & the Australian Kangaroos.

A trial match was organised between the South Sydney Possibles & Probables on the 21st March 1908 at Sir Joseph Banks Park Botany as a tune up for the upcoming season but also so the players could learn the rules to this newly created game. Englishman Tom McCabe lectured players and officials on the finer points of the new code. This historic match would be the first ever rugby league game played on Australian soil. Hennessy captained the Probables but they were defeated 9-8 by the Possibles led by Bill Cann.

A view of the Sir Joseph Banks Hotel at Botany Bay

On the 20th April 1908 the big one happened, the Rabbitohs first ever competition game in the NSWRL. Hennessy took the field for the Bunnies at Birchgrove Oval as an undersized captain/coach. Arthur Hennessy would earn the honour of being named Souths first grade player number #1. This numbering system was introduced by the club in 2003 & Hennessy was allocated his number then. The modern players like myself have embraced this numbering system with pride. Chris McQueen has his number 1070 boldly tattooed on his neck below is left ear.

Rabbitoh 1070 Chris McQueen

The first ever try scorer for Souths was winger Tommy Anderson (first grade player #2) in the 11-7 win over North Sydney.

Souths would win their next 2 games before suffering defeat for the first time at the hands of arch rivals Eastern Suburbs 13-12 at the Royal Agricultural Society Showground. The Souths v Easts rivalry has been around for as long as the game has existed.

Birchgrove Oval, Sydney the birthplace of the Bunnies

This would be Souths only loss of the season, they would remain undefeated all the way through to the grand final where they turned the tables on Easts to win the game 14-12. This result secured the competition, the first of the clubs 21 premierships, a record that has allowed the Rabbitohs to be continually described as the ‘Pride Of The League’

Hennessy would only play 5 games for Souths in 1908 before leaving for England on board the RMS Macedonia with the 1908-09 Kangaroos with 2 rounds to go before the finals. When their ship stopped over in Ceylon (Sri Lanka) the Rabbitohs players received a telegram from the team saying a simple message “Premiers”.

The tour robbed both Souths & Easts of their best players for the grand final & condemned the game to a contest without the best talent competing. Notable absentees that went on tour for Souths were Arthur Hennessy, Tommy Anderson & Arthur Butler (first grade player #3) while Easts lost the one & only Dally Messenger, Dan Frawley & Sandy Pearce.

Arthur Hennessy suffered a broken jaw on the Kangaroo tour & didn’t play in a test match. Hennessy played a total of 26 games for the Rabbitohs & would go into coach the Rabbitohs & Kangaroos.

Hennessy would create a institution of “running rugby” at South Sydney. He strongly advocated the no kick principle, emphasizing the importance of ball possession to score tries. This came to be the mark of South Sydney’s football with straight running and backing up. The no kick policy produced fast, open football and for Souths a remarkable winning record.

Hennessy was also caught up in the boundary wars with Easts that forced him to play for the tri colours for a short period.

Hennessy moved to Maroubra where he invested in the Maroubra Speedway and in mini-golf, and partly owned the Amusu cinema, Maroubra, living in a cottage opposite the theatre. Survived by his wife, Hennessy died on 19 September 1959 and was buried with Anglican rites in Botany cemetery.

Maroubra Speedway

Glory Glory

After a 43 year drought the Rabbitohs won their 21st premiership in 2014. This victory meant that their legions of fans could celebrate the ‘Pride Of The League’ once again & sing the song ‘Glory Glory to South Sydney….South Sydney marches on’.

Steve Mavin

Albert Clift, George Treweek & Eddie Root

Albert Clift, George Treweek & Eddie Root (image courtesy of Col Whelan)

On Friday 26th June 2020 an image was posted in our newly created Facebook group ‘Rabbitohs Radio Podcast Listeners’ by legendary photographer Col Whelan.

Beneath the photo Col asked the question “Any idea who these blokes are”?

The next day we had our answer thanks to Chris Isouard. In the picture stood three Rabbitohs legends Albert Clift, George Treweek & Eddie Root.

“Albert mentioned this day in a couple of his interviews over the years” said Chris. “Treweek and Root visited him in the early 80s and presented him with some of their playing memorabilia. Like many, Albert was a hero of mine and inspired me as a kid to collect everything Souths”.

Albert Clift

Albert Clift was a former player for South Sydney, former official and director, was the Club’s first mascot back in 1968, held an amazing collection of Rabbitohs memorabilia including the famed timekeeper’s bell from the first game in 1908 & is a Life Member of the Football Club.

Albert Clift
Albert Clift & Russell Crowe ring the famous timekeepers bell in 2002
Russell Crowe purchased the bell for $42000 to ensure it stayed in red & green hands

Eddie Root

Eddie Root (first grade player #139) 109 games & 34 tries was a starting forward in the Rabbitohs golden era of 7 premiership wins between 1925-32. Root had a brilliant career & is rightly regarded as one of the greatest ever Rabbitohs.

Eddie Root

The 1931 Rabbitohs

The 1931 South Sydney Rabbitohs defeated the Eastern Suburbs Roosters 12-7 in the NSWRL grand final. Eddie Root was the hooker & George Treweek played second row.

Second row: Eddie Root, Jack Morrison, Frank O’Connor, George Treweeke (vc), Frank Curran, Harry Eyers, Benny Wearing.
Front row: Jack Why, Jim Tait, Carl Eggen, Paddy Maher (capt), Albert Spillane, Jim Deeley, Perce Williams.
(Picture courtesy of SSR Almanac)

George Treweek

George Treweek (first grade player #153) 119 games & 40 tries was a starting forward in the Rabbitohs golden era of 7 premiership wins between 1925-32. He is a legendary attacking player who was rated as the finest second row forward the game has produced.

George Treweek was once described as “all arms & legs”
George Treweek played 7 tests for the Kangaroos
George & Eddie visit Albert