First Encounters: Bulldogs v Broncos
Tuesday 3 September 2013 12:22 PM
We have dusted off the history records at Bulldogs HQ to bring you all the information from the first time the Bulldogs ever played against the Brisbane Broncos!
The Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs took on the Brisbane Broncos when the greater west club was established in 1988.
Due to Queensland's success in the 1980s, the early days of the State of Origin series between Queensland and New South Wales and also the success of a Brisbane team in the Mid-Week competition made it an easy choice to include a Queensland Based team in the competition.
1988 was a big year for Australia, Rugby League and the Canterbury Bulldogs. It was the Bicentennial celebration of European settlement in Australia and the first year that the Rugby league Grand Final would be played out at the Sydney Football Stadium.
For Canterbury, it meant new beginnings as the club looked towards a new direction with a youthful and talented coach, Phil Gould.
Author of the Bulldog Story Gary Lester summed up some of the rhetoric surrounding the appointment of a 29 year old Gould to Canterbury’s first grade side:
“As coach of Canterbury's reserve grade side in 1987, he had shown Canterbury's management that he was a coach above the ordinary, one who saw the game through his own eyes. His team made the semi-finals and lost only two matches in the second round of the premiership. The Canterbury management believed Gould had proved himself and was the right coach for the job.
Many questioned Canterbury's decision to appoint a 29-year-old to lead the club's charge back to the finals. After all, Gould was young enough to be playing and had played with a number of the players he was about to coach. The football arena was strewn with coaches who had failed to come to terms with coaching players who were former team mates.”
The Captaincy of the Bulldogs in 1988 was subject to much controversy with Phil Gould taking the honours off Steve Mortimer and handing it over to Peter Tunks. Peter was very successful in his first year as captain taking the Bulldogs all the way to the 1988 Grand Final when they defeated Balmain 24-12.
The first Bulldogs v Broncos game was played at the Broncos spiritual home Suncorp Stadium on the 26th June in the 15th round of the Premiership. Canterbury comfortably defeated the new comers 25-10 in front of 15371 fans.
Paul Langmack, Glen Nissen, Joe Thomas and Robin Thorne all managed to get across the try line with Terry Lamb converting all four tries and adding a field goal to his tally.
For the full match report and much more, check out the Bulldogs Online History Database: