Super League Tri-series

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The Super League Tri-series was a rugby league football tournament contested in 1997 between Queensland, New South Wales, and New Zealand representative rugby league teams. It was run by the breakaway Super League organisation as an alternative to the Australian Rugby League's traditional State of Origin series, with each of the two series involving exclusively players contracted to clubs of their respective League. New South Wales were overall winners of the Tri-series, defeating Queensland in the final.


  • New South Wales defeated Queensland 38–10 (Aussie Stadium, Sydney, 11 April 1997. Attendance: 26,731)
  • Queensland defeated New Zealand 26–12 (Ericsson Stadium, Auckland, 9 May 1997. Attendance: 18,000)
  • New South Wales defeated New Zealand 20–15 (Bruce Stadium, Canberra, 14 May 1997. Attendance: 13,836)

After New South Wales defeated Queensland on 11 April 1997 it was possible for New Zealand to make the final if they defeated New South Wales. This commercially disastrous final looked like becoming a reality when New Zealand winger Sean Hoppe scored a try in the dying minutes of the 14 May match against New South Wales, but the try was controversially disallowed.[1]


  • New South Wales defeated Queensland 23–22 (ANZ Stadium, Brisbane, 19 May 1997. Attendance: 35,570)

The Tri-series final was held on 19 May 1997, and won by New South Wales, who defeated Queensland 23-22 at ANZ Stadium in the longest-ever game of first class rugby league. After 80 minutes, the scores were locked at 18-18, and a further 20 minutes were played. At the end of this time, the scores were 22-22, and Queensland captain Allan Langer is said to have asked the referee, "Should we toss a coin to see who wins?" The game then moved into golden point extra time, and after 104 minutes, Noel Goldthorpe kicked a field goal for New South Wales, and won the match.

Final Teams[edit]

New South Wales[edit]

Position Name Club
Fullback David Peachey Cronulla colours.svg Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
Wing Ken Nagas Canberra colours.svg Canberra Raiders
Centre Andrew Ettingshausen Cronulla colours.svg Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
Centre Matthew Ryan Canterbury colours.svg Canterbury Bulldogs
Wing Brett Mullins Canberra colours.svg Canberra Raiders
Five-eighth Laurie Daley (c) Canberra colours.svg Canberra Raiders
Halfback Noel Goldthorpe Hunter colours.svg Hunter Mariners
Prop Glenn Lazarus Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Hooker Craig Gower Panthers colours.svg Penrith Panthers
Prop Ian Roberts North Queensland colours.svg North Queensland Cowboys
Second-row David Furner Canberra colours.svg Canberra Raiders
Second-row Simon Gillies Canterbury colours.svg Canterbury Bulldogs
Lock Bradley Clyde Canberra colours.svg Canberra Raiders
Interchange Solomon Haumono Canterbury colours.svg Canterbury Bulldogs
Interchange Robbie Kearns Western Reds colours.svg Western Reds
Interchange Robbie Ross Hunter colours.svg Hunter Mariners
Interchange Luke Priddis Canberra colours.svg Canberra Raiders
Coach Graham Murray Hunter colours.svg Hunter Mariners


Position Name Club
Fullback Darren Lockyer Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Wing Mat Rogers Cronulla colours.svg Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
Centre Tonie Carroll Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Centre Steve Renouf Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Wing Wendell Sailor Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Five-eighth Kevin Walters Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Halfback Allan Langer (c) Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Prop Brad Thorn Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Hooker Steve Walters North Queensland colours.svg North Queensland Cowboys
Prop Owen Cunningham North Queensland colours.svg North Queensland Cowboys
Second-row Peter Ryan Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Second-row Gordon Tallis Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Lock Darren Smith Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Interchange Shane Webcke Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Interchange Kevin Campion Adelaide colours.svg Adelaide Rams
Interchange Paul Green Cronulla colours.svg Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks
Interchange Michael Hancock Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos
Coach Wayne Bennett Brisbane colours.svg Brisbane Broncos



Team Played Wins Losses Points
1 New South Wales 2 2 0 4
2 Queensland 2 1 1 2
3 New Zealand 2 0 2 0

Try scorers[edit]

Tries Scored Player
4 Ken Nagas (NSW)
3 Andrew Ettingshausen (NSW), Brett Mullins (NSW), Tonie Carroll (Qld)
2 David Peachey (NSW), Simon Gillies (NSW), Ruben Wiki (NZ), Steve Renouf (Qld)
1 Shane Webcke (Qld), Greg Alexander (NSW), Kevin Walters (Qld), Allan Langer (Qld), Mat Rogers (Qld), Stacey Jones (NZ), Wendell Sailor (Qld), Gene Ngamu (NZ), Peter Ryan (Qld), Michael Hancock (Qld), Matthew Ryan (NSW), John Timu (NZ)

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Mascord, Steve (14 May 1997). "Try, try and try again, but Kiwis denied by ref". The Sydney Morning Herald (Australia: Fairfax). p. 50. Retrieved 3 May 2010.