1911 NSWRFL season
|1911 NSWRFL season|
|League||New South Wales Rugby Football League|
|Duration||April 29 to September 16|
|Premiers||Eastern Suburbs (1st title)|
|Minor Premiers||Glebe (1st title)|
|Top point-scorer(s)||Dally Messenger (148)|
|Top try-scorer(s)||Dave Garlick (13)|
|Number of teams||16|
|Number of teams||22|
|Runners-up||South Sydney Kinkora|
The 1911 New South Wales Rugby Football League premiership was the fourth season of Sydney’s top-level rugby league club competition, Australia’s first. Eight teams from across the city contested during the season for the premiership and the Royal Agricultural Society Challenge Shield.
The League’s turnover for the 1911 season was £15,889, up £2,477 on the previous year.
For the first time in its short history, the premiership consisted of the same teams for two consecutive seasons in a row. The same eight teams from the 1910 season played in 1911.
- Balmain, formed on January 23, 1908, at Balmain Town Hall
- Eastern Suburbs, formed on January 24, 1908, at Paddington Town Hall
- Glebe, formed on January 9, 1908
- Newtown, formed on January 14, 1908
- North Sydney, formed on February 7, 1908
- South Sydney, formed on January 17, 1908, at Redfern Town Hall
- Western Suburbs, formed on February 4, 1908
Ground: Wentworth Park
Captain-Coach: Charlie Hedley
Ground: Birchgrove Oval
Coach: Robert Graves
Captain: Arthur Halloway
Ground: Sydney Sports Ground
Captain-Coach: Dally Messenger
Ground: Wentworth Park
Coach: Chris McKivat
Captain: Albert Burge
Ground: Erskineville Oval
Captain: Bill Noble
Ground: North Sydney Oval
Captain: Con Sullivan
Ground:Sydney Sports Ground
Coach: Arthur Hennessy
Captain: Billy Cann
Ground: St Luke's Park
Captain: Tedda Courtney
The finals system used for the 1910 season was similar in the 1911 season. The top two teams at the end of the year were to play each other in a final to decide the premiership, but in the event of the minor premiers losing, they were deemed to have the "right of challenge" to play a Grand Final. However, because both Eastern Suburbs and South Sydney finished on equal premiership points in second place, a playoff was used to decide who would play minor premiers Glebe in the final.
Eastern Suburbs ended up beating local rivals South Sydney 23-10 at the Sports Ground in front of 14,000 people on September 2, 1911, to win the play-off in order to play minor premiers Glebe. The following week, Eastern Suburbs beat Glebe in front of 16,000 at the Agricultural Ground 22-9. Glebe immediately exercised their right for a rematch the following week for a match to be held at the Agricultural Ground on September 16, 1911.
|Fred Kinghorn||FB||Roy Algie|
|Barney Dalton||WG||Mick Muggivan|
|John Campbell||CE||Dave Garlick|
|Dally Messenger (Ca./Co.)||CE||Tom Gleeson|
|Eddie White||WG||Charlie Cubitt|
|Herb Collins||FE||Les Cubitt|
|Leslie Cody||HB||Fritz Thiering|
|Larry O'Malley||PR||Sid Pert|
|Sandy Pearce||HK||Jack Redmond|
|Mick Frawley||PR||Sam Griffiths|
|Eddie Griffiths||SR||Albert Burge (c)|
|Charlie Lees||SR||Frank Burge|
|W Dalton||LK||Harry Brighton|
After Glebe won the toss, Dally Messenger kicked off at 3:31pm on what was a very windy Saturday afternoon. Glebe winger Cubitt scored early and Easts were only able to post a penalty goal in the first half and trailed 5–2 at the break. The referee was Tom McMahon (the elder of the two Sydney top-grade referees of that name) who in the first half sent off Glebe’s Sid Pert and Rooster Larry O'Malley, the former Australian Kangaroo captain. Early in the second half, Cubitt scored again for Glebe to take an 8–4 lead. However, in the final ten minutes, Eastern Suburbs were able to score a try after a high kick was misjudged by the Glebe fullback, and Charlie Lees took the loose ball to score a try. Dally Messenger converted to take the lead 9–8 with only minutes to play, and consolidated the win with another penalty kick to win the game 11–8 for the Roosters and allowing them to take their first premiership in front of 20,000 people.
|“||Played in blustery conditions, Glebe’s form improved greatly but they could not compete with the immaculate kicking of Dally Messenger.
In an incident-packed opening stanza McMahon reduced each side to twelve men by sending off O'Malley and Sid Pert after a touch judge's report. Ensuing scrums were played with only four forwards. Glebe three-quarter Tom Gleeson left the field with an ankle injury and was replaced at half time by Farrelly.
With first use of the stiff southerly, Glebe winger C.R. Cubitt scored out wide in the second minute from a scrum close to the Easts line. Messenger replied with a goal shortly after for Glebe to lead 5–2 at halftime. When play resumed, Messenger goaled again to narrow the gap to one point. Twelve minutes in, Glebe edged to an 8–4 lead when Cubitt crossed for his second try: a brilliant length of the field effort featuring Farrelly, Redmond, Alby Burge and finally Cubitt who beat Messenger's ankle tap.
With thirteen minutes left in the grand final, Lees scored Easts’ only try, from a high kick. The ball bounced off dazed Glebe fullback “Bunny” Algie (who had been injured in a headclash in the opening minutes with winger White). Messenger converted and Easts snatched a 9–8 lead. Messenger's field goal six minutes from the bell gave his team the three point buffer at 11–8 and the confidence to hang on and win their first premiership. After exchanging jerseys, the elated surfsiders carried Messenger from the field".
|— Haddon, Steve, "History of the NSWRL Finals"|
Eastern Suburbs 11 (Tries: Lees. Goals: Messenger 3. Fld Goal: Messenger )
Glebe 8 (Tries; C Cubitt 2 Goals: 1.)