The NRL has announced that up to two new Immortals will be chosen in 2018, while another six retired stars of the game will be inducted into a new Hall of Fame.
It is all part of a new Immortals and Hall of Fame program, unveiled by NRL Chief Executive, Todd Greenberg on Monday.
Mr Greenberg was joined by modern greats of the game, Wally Lewis, Mal Meninga and Darren Lockyer to unveil the NRL’s new recognition programs.
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“This is a significant occasion for our game as we celebrate the history of Rugby League and recognise those who have shaped it,” he said.
“Without question, one of the biggest topics in rugby league revolves around comparisons between heroes of our game…whether it’s players from decades ago or those from the modern era.
“This year, we will induct an additional six players into a new NRL Hall of Fame.
“They will join the 100 Greats – named in our Centenary year ten years ago – who gain automatic induction into the NRL Hall of Fame as the Charter Class.
“We will also relaunch the Immortals, with up to two players being given the ultimate honour in our game, every four years.
“And the first of those new Immortals will be chosen this year.”
NRL Awards Manager, Frank Puletua said the re-shaped recognition programs are part of an overall campaign to acknowledge players, coaches, referees and others who put so much into the game.
“With the inclusion of the Immortals, the NRL now has more than 30 official award categories in our game – ranging from those who reach 100 NRL games, through to our top tier awards such as the Dally M Medal, Hall of Fame and Immortals,” Mr Puletua said.
“A significant amount of work has been undertaken to ensure that our history and tradition continues to appropriately acknowledge milestones and pay tribute to the best of the best.”
A list of 25 former players will be announced next month, who will be eligible for possible induction into the Hall of Fame – joining the automatically submitted 100 players named as part of the games’ Centenary Year in 2008.
A Hall of Fame and Immortals ceremony will be held in August.