The NSW sporting community is today mourning the passing of rugby league legend, Tommy Raudonikis, who died this morning aged 70, after a long battle with cancer.
NSW Shadow Minister for Sport and Member for Auburn, Lynda Voltz ,said his passing is a great loss.
“Tommy is a local legend who brought Lidcombe Oval to life every time he led the Magpies onto the field,” Ms Voltz said.
“Not only was he one of the toughest players in rugby league, he also had a big heart.”
Born in Bathurst and raised in country NSW, Tommy is regarded as one of rugby league’s toughest players. He made his name at Lidcombe Oval with 202 appearances for the Western Suburbs Magpies between 1969 and 1979, including captaining the team from 1971.
According to Ms Voltz, Tommy was the hero of a generation of Magpies fans for his toughness, tenacity and leadership, qualities which embodied the western suburbs of Sydney.
He made 24 appearances for NSW, including captaining NSW in the inaugural State of Origin game in 1980, and played 29 Tests for Australia, captaining on two occasions. He would later coach NSW in the 1997 and 1998 State of Origin series, winning three of the six games.
Tommy Raudonikis is a member of the NRL Hall of Fame, NSWRL Hall of Fame and received an Order of Australia Medal in 1982.
“Tommy’s passing is a great loss to rugby league and our local sporting community. Our thoughts go to Tommy’s partner Trish, his family and close friends,” Ms Voltz said.
For more sporting news:
- Tapine returns for Raiders vs Panthers blockbuster
- Canberra Raiders vs Gold Coast Titans: 5 talking points
- Giants lose to Demons in horror night at Manuka