FLASHBACK: July 1971

Brothers’ prop, Garnett Kerr was sent from the field just before halftime in a bruising Lang Park encounter against Wests in front of a crowd of more than 16,000.

Kerr, (whose son, Gerard would go on to represent Queensland Residents against Great Britain in 1992), was later suspended for a week for striking an opponent, in a match won 26-5 by Wests.

Brothers played most of the second half with 11 men after Greg Thomas and Brian Green were injured. Thomas was replaced by Trevor Lindenberg, but because Brothers had already replaced hooker, Bob Anderton at halftime, they could not replace their second injury.

This particular rule caused much public debate, but Brisbane Rugby League chairman, Arthur Sparkes said he did not believe fans wanted to see unlimited replacements!!

In Sydney club football in 1971, replacements for injuries in A grade and reserve grade must have played in a previous match that day.

The Courier-Mail’s chief league writer, Jack Reardon, a former international, leaned towards unlimited replacements, with the proviso that once a player has been replaced, he cannot take the field again in the same match.

The Brothers – Wests match was a close contest (5-all at halftime) until Brothers were reduced to 11 men.

In the first half, referee, Ron Harbottle had given captains, John White (Wests) and John Smith (Brothers) the option of moving respective hookers, Arty Connell and Anderton out of the hooking position, or having them sent off for the next breach of the scrum rules. Both captains moved their hookers.

At halftime Wests replaced prop, Kev Treschman with reserve grade hooker, Trevor Young while David Wright came on for Anderton.

Second rower, Ian Robson and fullback, Kev Denman were outstanding for Wests, while lock, Wayne Abdy was Brothers’ best.

In the Saturday Lang Park match Souths went two points clear at the top of the premiership ladder when they beat Easts 27-11 in a lively encounter, with Easts playing the last 27 minutes with 12 men following the dismissal of their forward leader, Ron Lewis for punching.

There was plenty of needle in the match, and Reardon said referee, Dale Coogan’s dismissal of Lewis helped him maintain control.

Souths’ halfback, Doug Stapleton was brilliant, and firmed for selection in the Brisbane representative side to play North Queensland in the Gold Top (that was a beer) state championship final.

Norths, with former centres, Peter Videroni and Glenn Harrison (uncle of Queensland Origin forward, Ash Harrison) starring as forwards, overran Wynnum-Manly 21-9 at Bishop Park.

In the other match of the round Redcliffe beat Valleys 18-10 at Neumann Oval with prop, Alan McLean outstanding for the victors, although he finished worse for wear after a crunching tackle from Valleys’ giant, Russell Hughes.

Gerard Kerr

Gerard Kerr – pic taken May 2017 @ Brothers Grange Community Sports Club

Russell Hughes

Russell Hughes

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