PLAYER Wally Lewis Discussion

kooly87

NRL Player
2,815
4,872
Wally was a competitor and just had an aggressive will to win any contest (something our team lacks now). What i forgot was the amount of tackle busts he made because he would not surrender into a tackle.

What is not often commented on is that he was much like locky in that he had an innate capacity to read the play before it occured and put himself in the right position to capitalise (i.e supporting runners of the ball etc.)
Smith, Lockyer, JT, Cronk, Joey - they all had that same special ability to just seem to be a play or two in front of everyone else. Only Wally really had that physical ability to just beat a guy through being stronger or fighting harder in the tackle, which for me places him at the top of the list of them all though.

I also think Cam Smith with the benefit of a bit of retirement hindsight will give him a very close run given his tremendous defensive efforts to go with everything else he possesses.
 
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broncsgoat

State of Origin Rep
6,381
6,452
Yeah I saw a game on YouTube I think it was 92 when he was captain/coach of the seagulls against the bulldogs, his idea of attacking moves was a run around with his halfback Lol he must have done it 5 times in that game and got smashed every single time
Was that the last season he played? Using that as an example to say he wasn’t any good is ridiculous.
 

Sirlee oldman

NRL Player
1,615
2,367
I don’t remember the exact year but I guess it was around 79/80 and I went to Lang Park for the first time while on holiday in Brisbane. Watched Wally put on a master class to win a game for Valleys despite being repeatedly targeted and taken out in back play. He was very tough.
 

abashii

NRL Player
2,605
4,990
Deep Didgeridoo
imagine how good Wally could have been in the professional era of today ... instead of an era where a beer, a pie and a smoke was considered recovery

Recovery? That was your warm-up routine, with a winnie red and a warm tin at halftime.

With so much quality footage available on Youtube these days it really is pretty inexcusable for Broncos/Queensland fans who were too young to have seen him play live to claim ignorance about just how good he really was as a player. Do yourself a favour, sit down and WATCH this if you really love Rugby League.

Honestly, if you've only really come into Rugby League in the NRL era and have grown used to, particularly in the last decade, a more robotic and structured standard of footy, you'll honestly be pretty blown away by just how incredibly natural and seemingly off the cuff Wally looked at times and just how easy he often seemed to do it all.

The closest thing I can compare a lot of this footage to is the times on the old Footy Show when they used to show highlights of park/junior footballers on low quality footage with a couple of guys just absolutely carving up opposition that looks several levels below them. Wally's highlight videos, right down to the grainy footage, are so often almost exactly like that.

A perfect blend of Cam Smith's composure, coolness and on field authority, Darren Lockyer's freakish ability to nail a clutch play under pressure, coupled with JT's ability to play above his weight and seemingly almost 'will' himself and his side into a winning play, and an almost Gorden Tallis like level of physicality that no other elite Half I've ever seen could even come close to - which to me puts him up there as the best of the lot.
100% agree with this, Wally just oozed physical determination. He played in a tough tough era and didn't shy away from the physical side of things while still having that grace and vision. My son started playing footy and even though he doesn't really like watching it we sat down together and watched the 1991 Origin where Wally stood up to a man half his age and twice his size and just didn't give an inch. The young fella was in awe and hopefully that will stick with him for many a year.
 

gUt

NRL Player
2,422
224
bastard cocktail
My dad was a fan of Wally's in the BRL and used to say he had the ability to read 2-3 plays ahead. Like he would direct play left-left-left all to set up a gap for his centre on the right in 3 plays time. The other thing Wally had was a topographical map of Lang Park installed in his brain. Old Lang Park had a crown to assist drainage and Wally knew how to exploit this when kicking for touch or the corners better than anyone.
 

heartly87

NRL Player
1,020
1,946
Smith, Lockyer, JT, Cronk, Joey - they all had that same special ability to just seem to be a play or two in front of everyone else. Only Wally really had that physical ability to just beat a guy through being stronger or fighting harder in the tackle, which for me places him at the top of the list of them all though.

I also think Cam Smith with the benefit of a bit of retirement hindsight will give him a very close run given his tremendous defensive efforts to go with everything else he possesses.
His (Cam) last Origin game in 2017 is the most impressive thing I have ever witnessed. He came out in the media and said exactly what he planned to do, he did everything he said and more. Playing as a half and hooker always on the ball, beautiful kicking, just the most complete game you could watch. Cam is exceptional and is right next to Wally for me. Not many people could say I am going to carve you up and come out and carve you up haha Cam is a killer.
 

Thelmus

NRL Player
1,446
1,523
Oh that brings back the memories. Yep can still remember sitting in the old stands at Lang Park on a freezing Wednesday SoO night in June watching those 30 metre long spiral passes of Wally's. I know many say CS9 and Johns are the greatest ever, but to my mind, Wally is the best there ever was. He just ruled the field, especially in origin.
He did one thing I've never seen another player do: he had 25 players and the ref trying to figure out what he was up to (the 26th knew every time).
Id only saw him toward the end but that try that had 3 defenders backing away from and another 2 falling for a dummy with literally no one outside him lives long in my memory of origin.
Of the modern players, only lockyer, meninga (in the 90's) and maybe Johns could make their teammates lift with just their mere presence.
I remember a in 1990 (when he had been sacked from 5/8th and replaced by Walters and was playing off the bench. He was coming back from injury. The broncos were down by something like 16 points and they were looking lost.
Lewis came on and for about 10 minutes the whole momentum changed. We looked like we would grab the win. The opposition was backpedaling and for that 10 minutes he was the wally of old. But he re-injured himself and that was that.
 

TheGreatCornholio7

NYC Player
152
99
Was that the last season he played? Using that as an example to say he wasn’t any good is ridiculous.
I"m not saying he was not good in his time but it's quite easy looking good with gene miles, big mal and co outside you. I was making the point that he was doing under 7 moves when he was coach of a side and I would expect more than that from the immortal King of rugby league. Queensland needed a hero in the early days of origin and the media obliged by talking old Wal up.
 

TheGreatCornholio7

NYC Player
152
99
**** me, and I thought you couldn’t be any more irrelevant on this forum. Congratulations, you’ve just outdone yourself.

Oh and BTW, Langer was my favourite player, too. Doesn’t mean he was better than the King.
well this forum is about opinions don't get butt hurt because everyone doesn't have the same wrong one you do Lol.
 

TheGreatCornholio7

NYC Player
152
99
**** me, and I thought you couldn’t be any more irrelevant on this forum. Congratulations, you’ve just outdone yourself.

Oh and BTW, Langer was my favourite player, too. Doesn’t mean he was better than the King.
Wow I'd hate for someone to think my opinion has no merit or is irrelevant unlike most of the rugby league gurus on a biased rugby league club fan site. Really it's just an opinion pal loosen up a bit and don't take life so seriously Lol
 
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TheGreatCornholio7

NYC Player
152
99
My dad was a fan of Wally's in the BRL and used to say he had the ability to read 2-3 plays ahead. Like he would direct play left-left-left all to set up a gap for his centre on the right in 3 plays time. The other thing Wally had was a topographical map of Lang Park installed in his brain. Old Lang Park had a crown to assist drainage and Wally knew how to exploit this when kicking for touch or the corners better than anyone.
yes apparently he was on a first name basis with every blade of grass on the Lang park field too.
 

Unbreakable

International Rep
Staff
18,178
17,614
🌏
The best way to find out how good Wally Lewis is to find a 50yo NSW fan and ask them what they think of Wally Lewis. Their eyes will glaze over and they'll double over into a kind of catatonic state of PTSD, such was the damage he did to them in the 80s.

Sounds like my step-dad, he's in his late 50's, was born and raised in Liverpool, NSW. Literally refused to watch 9 News when I was growing up because Wally was on it. 😂

State of Origin nights were very eventful in my household when I was younger, a diehard Blue surrounded by a bunch of diehard Maroons. I still remember the look on his face when Matty Bowen grabbed that intercept. It was in that moment that I saw the face of true horror.
 

GCBRONCO

International Rep
14,715
9,461
Gold Coast
If you ever manage to track down copies of King Wally and Wally and the Broncos(it's base d before his sacking as captain, more about the birth of the Broncos) I recommend you pick them up, great reads. The only thing is they are old books so you may have to look on ebay or markets/garage sales.
 

soup

State of Origin Captain
10,144
8,230
T’ba
Wow I'd hate for someone to think my opinion has no merit or is irrelevant unlike most of the rugby league gurus on a biased rugby league club fan site. Really it's just an opinion pal loosen up a bit and don't take life so seriously Lol
Mate, your chosen BHQ name is another way of saying anus, so I shouldn’t be surprised when you speak shit should I? My bad.
 

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