This week’s Too Good Tuesday commemorates 30 years since the most fabled Wembley final in the Challenge Cup’s glittering history, when a clutch of Australian stars set the hallowed turf alight in the 1985 decider between Wigan and Hull.
Brett Kenny was Wigan’s superstar import, while Parramatta teammate Peter Sterling was the linchpin for Hull.
Adding to the antipodean influence, Kiwi Graeme West captained a Wigan side that also included cult hero winger John ‘Chicka’ Ferguson, who was then with Eastern Suburbs. Among the cherry-and-whites’ home-grown stars were Shaun Edwards, Henderson Gill and Mike Ford.
Hull featured former Kangaroos second-rower John Muggleton, and Kiwi quartet Fred Ah Kuoi, Gary Kemble, Dane O’Hara and James Leuluai. Lee Crooks was the captain and a young Garry Schofield came off the bench.
The English giants produced one of the greatest Rugby League matches ever witnessed, but the Australian guns were the unmistakable stars.
Kenny and Sterling duelled brilliantly, while Ferguson bagged a sensational double in Wigan’s 28-24 triumph in front of 97,801 supporters. But tries by Gill and Leuluai also contributed to its status as the finest final of all time.
Kenny became the first Australian to win the coveted Lance Todd trophy as man-of-the-match, scoring a dazzling solo try and laying on two more courtesy of his footwork and sleight of hand.