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"1995 will be remembered as the most radical year in Rugby since the formation of Rugby League 100 years ago." - QRU President Dick McGruther
The domination of professionalism and the defence of Webb Ellis and Super 10 trophies defined Queensland's 1995 season.
The Reds prepared for the historic season with matches in North Queensland and Rockhampton before taking to Ballymore for Round 1, against Canterbury. The 24-6 win over the powerhouse New Zealand side was followed with similarly decisive wins over Auckland (31-15), Tonga (32-20) and Orange Free State (29-7) before returning to South Africa to attempt another Super 10 Grand Final win away from home.
"The Reds Super 10 campaign commenced with fine wins against Canterbury, Tonga, and Orange Free State at Ballymore. In between time, the team posted their first ever victory over New Zealand Champions Auckland in New Zealand." - QRU Team Manager, Lou Sorensen
Queensland captain, Peter Slattery led his team out in Match No. 655 on April 8 at Ellis Park, Johannesburg which would host the Rugby World Cup Final two months later. The highly-anticipated match was also Reds Stalwart Rod McCall's 100th state cap; the ninth Queenslander to achieve the milestone.
"A fantastic exhibition saw the Reds post a remarkable victory, which left an indelible mark on all those who witnessed the match. Congratulations to Peter Slattery and the truly magnificent Reds." QRU President Dick McGruther
Just as the previous year, Queensland's disciplined forwards and dynamic backs dominated play. A stunning 80-metre intercept try from reserve Brett Johnstone broke the game open after Queensland was 8-9 down. Tries from Damian Smith, Jason Little and Mark Connors added to the fine kicking from both John Eales and Paul Kahl to secure a monumental 30-16 victory and back-to-back Super titles.
14 Queenslanders were rewarded with selection in the Wallabies World Cup squad, making it 16 who had played in Green and Gold over the 1995 season. Although the Wallabies bowed out after a semi-final loss to England, Queensland's influence on the national side continued through to the 1999 World Cup, which the wallabies brought home.
The revolutionary 1995 season can be seen as the first of the modern era.
"We did not have the luxury of a graduated development from amateurism to professionalism. It was a quantum leap." - QRU President Dick McGruther
QRU Executive Director Terry Doyle impressed on the Queensland Rugby's side at the time that although the professional era had dawned, "players must take on board their obligations to the grass roots of the game which put them where they are." This entrenched amateur-era ethos into the modern squad and served Ballymore well as the worldwide Rugby community experienced unprecedented change and growth.
Queensland captain Peter Slattery accepting the 1995 Super 10 trophy
Make sure you're there at Suncorp Stadium on April 21 for the St.George Queensland Reds' clash against the Chiefs in Queensland Rugby's 1000th capped match.
Purchasing a membership and joining our Rugby family is still the best value for money per game than buying individual tickets.
21 JANUARY 2019