Team of the


Gary Belcher was an outstanding fullback for Souths. He played in the 1982 grand final and in the winning 1985 grand final. Following his move to Canberra where he continued to shine as a great fullback he was selected for Queensland and played 16 times up until his retirement in 1993. He also made the Australian team and played 16 tests from 1986 to 1991. In 1988, after impressing for his club as well as in Queensland’s clean-sweep Origin series, Belcher was called up to the Australian squad again to play in the Centenary Test match against Great Britain. Belcher was called up for the 1990 Kangaroo tour, in which he played all five test matches despite the challenge from other players such as Greg Alexander. In 1991, injury ruled him out of the test series against New Zealand. He regained his number one spot in the Australian squad for the fullback position on the tour of Papua New Guinea, where he played in all five matches and top scored with 32 points.


Originally coming from Charleville, Mitch Brennan trialled with the Toronto Argonauts (Canadian Football League) in 1975 and was offered a contract before visa restrictions prevented his career there. He went straight from Colts to A grade without going through the grades. He returned to Australia to play for Souths Magpies. His NSWRL career began controversially when in the 1977 pre-season, he was coaxed by his former coach Harry Bath to play for St. George in a trial match at Grafton. Brennan played under the pseudonym ‘Mickey Lane’ because he was still in contract negotiations with Brisbane Souths. He was recognised and fined $500. He joined St George in 1978. He played 4 State of Origin games for Queensland between 1981 and 1983. He was with South Sydney when he was first picked before moving back to Queensland to play for Redcliffe before finishing his career in 1988 with Canberra.


Mal Meninga was born in Bundaberg, went to school on the Sunshine Coast and was enrolled by his mother in the Police Academy based at Oxley when he was 15. This was where he came to the attention of Wayne Bennett, who worked at the Police Academy and coached him and other future Souths players in the Police Academy‘s league side. A tall and very powerful centre, he made his debut with Souths at 18 in 1978 when Wayne Bennett first coached Souths. He was a fast blockbusting runner of the ball. He was picked to play for Queensland the next year in 1979, the year before State of Origin was born. He would play for Queensland 43 times between 1979 and 1994. He made the 1982 Kangaroo Tour and played a record 46 times for Australia before that was eclipsed recently by Darren Lockyer. He played one season for St Helens in 1984/85 and from 1986 to 1994 he played for Canberra. He has used his connections with Canberra to build a strong bond with Souths and has shown a deep loyalty to both his playing clubs. Further to all of that, Mal Meninga has coached Queensland to seven State of Origin series wins since 2006.


Bruce Astill played for Souths in the 1970’s and 1980’s and was a great centre. He captained Souths to victory in the 1981 Grand Final. He first represented Queensland against New South Wales in 1979. He was selected on the bench for the first ever State of Origin match in 1980 but did not take the field. He again played for Queensland in the third and deciding match of the 1983 State of Origin series.


John Grant was one of the best and fastest wingers and centres in the 1970‘s. He played for Queensland 6 times in 1972 to 1973. He had great attacking flair and also played in the 1972 World Cup for Australia. He was recently appointed as the inaugural chairman of the Australian Rugby League Commission.


Ted Verrenkamp played in both the winning C grade (as a centre) and Reserve Grade (as a five-eighth) premiership sides in 1945 during Souths famous clean sweep. He was a smart five-eighth with great ball handling skills. Verrenkamp represented Queensland as a player six times in 1946-47 from the Souths club before accepting an offer from English giants Leeds, where he played for the next seven years. He coached Qld to a 2-2 series draw in 1960 and Easts to a BRL premiership in 1972 and was known for his love of attacking football.


Norm McLean was a halfback in the 1953 Premiership side. He was a strong defender, good ball handler and organiser of his forwards.


Jack Veivers had a strong work ethic regularly commuting from Beauderset to train for Souths. This showed in his football as he was a tireless forward. He represented Brisbane in the Bulimba Cup before playing four games for Queensland in 1953. Three of those games were against NSW and the other was against the touring American All-Stars at the Exhibition Ground. He also played in Souths premiership sides of 1949, 1951 and 1953. His son, Greg, and nephew Mick Veivers also played for Souths, Queensland and Australia.


A former Wests Sydney hooker went on to have a long career in the Brisbane competition with Souths. Alan Hornery was a hooker and a great striker of the ball. He was a very fiery player would not take a backward step. He played for Souths in the 1953 premiership side. He played 17 games for Queensland between 1953 and 1957.


Greg Veivers was the son of Jack Veivers who played in the 1950’s. He was a front rower like his father He was an excellent ball handler, strong defender and also a great leader.. He was a regular in the Queensland team in the 1970’s as well as a Queensland captain (1974) when the state team was still resident based and NSW completely dominated, quite often with several players who originated from Queensland. He represented Australia in 6 World Cup matches from 1975 and 1977 and captained the Kangaroos in a World Cup match in 1977. He played his entire career with Souths.


Bill Tyquin was a lock and was a strong defender and brilliant in attack. He could kick a ball with a torpedo kick over 75 yards. He played in 6 Tests between 1948 and 1949 as captain on 3 occasions. He returned to Brisbane after World War II playing five seasons for Souths from 1945–50 including playing in the 1945 and being captain-coach of the 1949 premiership sides. He first represented for Queensland in 1945 and then regularly over the next 5 years making 8 appearances against New South Wales as well as captaining Queensland in 1948 against a touring New Zealand side. He made his Test debut against New Zealand in the first Test of the 1948 series in Sydney and played in both Tests. He was subsequently named as vice-captain to Col Maxwell for the 1949 Kangaroo Tour of England and France an appointment overshadowed by the controversial non-selection of Len Smith. On that 1949 tour Tyquin played in 4 Tests and 10 minor tour matches. He enjoyed the honour of captaining Australia in two Tests against France and then in the third dead-rubber Test against Great Britain in Bradford. He was also President Souths Brisbane Rugby Leagues Club during the 1970‘s.


Harry Bath was a product of the Souths district and started playing for Souths in 1940 at age 16. Five years later in 1945 at age 21 he starred in Souths‘ first premiership since the change from being called Carltons. He was a brilliant second rower and played for Queensland that year. In all his playing career Harry Bath was never chosen to represent Australia and was possibly the best player never to represent his country. Some suggested his time in England was held against him. He was lured to Sydney playing two years for Balmain (1946-47), then went to play in England to play for Barrow (1948) and Warrington (1948-56) before returning to play his last three seasons with the all-conquering St George Dragons (1957-59). All five years he played in Sydney his teams Balmain and St George won the premiership. He coached Balmain (1961-66) and Newtown (1969-72) before moving back to Brisbane to coach Souths in the mid 1970‘s and then finished his coaching career with St George (1977-81) which included their 1979 premiership.


He was one of the greatest lock forwards to play for Souths, Queensland, New South Wales, and Australia, his cover defence was BRILLIANT, and his backing up of half backs and five eights was in the same mould as John Raper. played in the C grade side that won the premiership in 1945. After playing C grade he then went straight into the first grade side. He played in Souths winning 1949 premiership side. He was chosen for Queensland in 1949. He then played for Queensland against Great Britain in 1950 before playing in the final two Tests of the Ashes series. Mick played in the historic Third Test victory in 1950 in the mud at the SCG where Australia won the Ashes for the first time in 30 years. He had to recover from another operation to rectify the loss of feeling in his hands and feet to play in subsequent Test series against France (1951), Great Britain and France (1952-53 Kangaroos) and NZ (1953). He played in Souths winning premiership sides in 1951 and 1953.


He was a great centre similar in both attack and defence and played inside his brother Reg ―Bubbles‖ Pegg. He captained Souths to their winning 1945 premiership and was vice-captain in the 1949 winning premiership side. He played for Queensland 13 times and played two tests for Australia in 1948.


He was convinced into playing for Souths by his uncle Jack Veivers. Nicknamed ―Farmer, he used to commute from Beechmont in the Gold Coast Hinterland to training for Souths. He became an excellent front rower for Souths and later went on to play for Brisbane in the Bulimba Cup and representative football for Queensland and Australia. He played for Queensland 14 times between 1961 and 1964 and played 6 tests for Australia against Great Britain and New Zealand. He later became a TV football commentator and state member of parliament.


Chris Phelan was a lock and a versatile forward for Queensland with a tremendous work ethic in defence. He was playing for Souths when he first was first selected for Queensland at lock in all three games of the 1981 interstate series. He was the Rothmans Medal winner that year and then signed with to Sydney’s defending premiers Parramatta in1982. He played at prop in the Eels’ two Grand Final wins over Manly in 1982 and 1983 but moved to the second-row for the 6-4 loss in the 1984 decider against Canterbury. In 1984 he was recalled to the Queensland side for game III of the State of Origin series where he appeared at second-row. Phelan returned to play for Souths in 1985 and was a part of the premiership winning side that year, being involved with four grand final wins in five years for Souths and Parramatta.


Graeme Atherton was a great five-eighth who made a great combination with halfback Doug Stapleton in the early 1970‘s. He was a great thinker and organiser with brilliant pair of hands. He also won the 1970 Rothmans Medal Winner. That year he also played 2 games for Queensland.


Wayne Bennett is one of the most outstanding coaches the game has ever seen. He brought a number of great players to Souths through his connections working at the Queensland Police Academy. After suffering terrible grand final defeats with Souths in 1979 and 1984 he learned from those failures and moulded a tough, disciplined Souths side that broke through and defeated a star-studded Wynnum-Manly team in 1985. After a stint at Canberra he was sought out to become the Broncos debut coach in 1988 and continued with the Brisbane Broncos for an amazing 21 years where they won all 6 of their grand final appearances. He coached St George to success in 2010 bringing his tally up to 8 premierships in the BRL and NRL. He has also had great success coaching Queensland 21 times and Australia 16 times.

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Respecting the Past, Embracing the Present and Excited for the Future.

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