Quinlan: Gasnier An Influential Figure
By Jack Brady (NRL.com)
Saturday's fixture between the St George Illawarra Dragons and the North Queensland Cowboys at Jubilee Oval will mean more than just two competition points.
With the passing of rugby league immortal Reg Gasnier in May, just one day short of his 75th birthday, the Dragons will be celebrating the St George legend this Saturday afternoon upon their return to the Kogarah-based ground.
Winning six premierships and scoring 127 tries in 125 career games for the Dragons as well as being a mainstay in the New South Wales and Australian Test team throughout his illustrious career, Gasnier will be duly commemorated with a special pre-game ceremony involving his fellow rugby league Immortals and family.
Dynamic Dragons fullback Adam Quinlan has encouraged fans from all clubs to attend WIN Jubilee Oval on Saturday afternoon as the Dragons look to honour one of the greatest ever players to step foot onto a rugby league field.
"He is one of the biggest figures in the club's history and the game's history as well and to play in the match that's honouring Reg at his home ground in Kogarah will be a massive privilege," Quinlan told NRL.com.
"I'm sure everyone [here at the Dragons] will be up for the game especially for that reason.
"It'll be extra motivation for us because he was such a legend of the game and because it's our first home game [at Jubilee Oval] since his sad passing we will be doing everything we can to put in our best performance – which he deserves."
With the Dragons currently looking to make it three wins in a row there is no greater opportunity to honour Gasnier than by getting a win over a depleted North Queensland outfit despite missing NSW Origin duo Trent Merrin and Josh Dugan.
"[We will miss] having 'Duges' attacking flair out-wide and 'Mez' in the middle but I'm sure the players that come in for them will do an outstanding job like always and we'll be right," Quinlan said.
"North Queensland are going to be missing a couple of key players but they will have guys coming in like we do trying to make the most of their opportunities and do anything they can to hold their spot there so they'll be up for it no doubt."
With Quinlan making special note of how proud he is to be playing in the famous Red V jumper, rugby league fans are urged to attend the pre-game ceremony that will include the unveiling of memorial plaque in his honour and the retirement of his famous No. 3 Red V jumper for the evening at 4:25pm, one hour prior to kick-off.