MOST rugby league fans would be well aware of the famous “cattle dog” call that the NSW State of Origin teams used to fire themselves up against Queensland in the late 1990s.
And next month, rugby league supporters throughout the Eurobodalla will get a chance to meet the great man who first coined that phrase – Western Suburbs legend Tommy Raudonikis.
Raudonikis, who played for Australia on 29 occasions, will make a special guest appearance at the Moruya Sharks RLFC’s Sportsmen’s Night, to be held at Moruya Golf Club on February 2.
The former Western Suburbs Magpies and Newtown Jets halfback will share his notoriously funny stories and give some insight into what it was like playing rugby league at the elite level.
In a career that spanned 13 years and some 240 senior games, Raudonikis achieved virtually every accolade, including the Rothmans Medal in 1972.
The renowned tough man played 24 games for NSW – and in doing so became the first State of Origin captain for the Blues – and also played 29 times (including 14 Tests) for Australia, twice as captain.
He also coached the 1997 and 1998 Blues in State of Origin, introducing the infamous “cattle dog” call in the process.
Recognised as one of the toughest no-nonsense footballers ever to pull on a boot, Raudonikis was always one to wear his heart on his sleeve and his love and passion for the game has made him one of the most popular rugby league characters.
These days, he is an in- demand sportsmens’ night celebrity, and as a passionate and colourful speaker, he is sure to kick off the 2013 season for the Sharks with a bang.
Event organiser Ack Weyman said he was hoping for a big turnout for what “should be a great night of entertainment and fun”.
There will also be fundraising events on the night with lucky door prizes, a raffle and an auction of memorabilia items.
“Tommy is a true legend of the game and I look forward to his unique insight and famous one-liners. It should be a really good night,” Weyman said.
The event will include a two-course dinner and tickets are $50 per head, available from the Golf Club or by calling Ack Weyman on 0428 743 106.
All proceeds from the evening will go to the Moruya Sharks RLFC.