Top 10 greatest British rugby league players

- Advertisement -

As with all sports, rugby league has been brought to a halt by the coronavirus crisis, offering the opportunity to reflect on some of the greats the nation has produced down the years.

Here the PA news agency picks 10 of the finest players to have represented Great Britain in Tests.

Billy Boston

Hull FC v Wigan – Rugby League Challenge Cup Final – Wembley
Wigan winger Billy Boston in full flight at Wembley (PA Images)

Harold Wagstaff

The Prince of centres, Wagstaff became the youngest-ever professional rugby league player when he signed for Huddersfield at the age  of 15 and played for Yorkshire at 17. He captained Huddersfield when 19, leading them to all four cups in 1914-15, and at 21 was named captain of Great Britain. Wagstaff retired at the age of 34 having won three league championships and three Challenge Cups, and died at 48.

Alex Murphy

Rugby League – Challenge Cup Final – Warrington v Featherstone Rovers – Wembley Stadium
Alex Murphy holds the Challenge Cup aloft after helping Leigh triumph at Wembley in 1971 (PA)

Martin Offiah

Rugby League – Wigan v Leeds – Silk Cut Challenge Cup Final – Wembley
Martin Offiah celebrates with the trophy after Wigan’s 26-16 Challenge Cup final victory over Leeds (PA Archive)

Neil Fox

The youngest of three brothers from the Wakefield pit village of Sharlston, Neil Fox plundered a world record 6,220 points in a career that spanned three decades and included two spells at both Wakefield and Bradford from 1955 to 1979. He went on to win 29 caps, scoring 14 tries and kicking 93 goals for a total of 228 points, and went on the 1962 Lions tour to Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.

Shaun Edwards

Wigan v Halifax – Silk Cut Challenge Cup – Wembley
Wigan captain Shaun Edwards holds the Challenge Cup aloft after his team beat Halifax at Wembley (PA Archive)

Malcolm Reilly

Rugby League – Great Britain – Heathrow, London
Malcolm Reilly (front, fourth from the left) and his Great Britain team-mates on their way down under (PA)

Ellery Hanley

Wigan v Halifax – Silk Cut Challenge Cup – Wembley
Ellery Hanley scores a try in Wigan’s Challenge Cup win at Wembley (PA Archive)

Mick Sullivan

A World Cup winner at the age of 20 in 1954, Sullivan went on to achieve a record haul of 46 Great Britain caps which was subsequently equalled by Garry Schofield.  The Dewsbury-born winger scored 41 tries for his country and totalled 342 throughout his career which took in spells with Huddersfield, Wigan and St Helens and was the league’s leading scorer in 1957-58 with 50.

Garry Schofield

Great Britain captain Garry Schofield and his Australian counterpart Mel Meninga ahead of the 1992 World Cup final at Wembley (PA Images)

Albert Goldthorpe

Goldthorpe was one of the most widely-respected talents in the game at the time of the Northern Union’s formation in 1895. He began a career spanning four decades with Hunslet at the age of 16 in 1888 and, when he retired in 1910, he had scored over 1,500 points in 659 games. In the 1907-08 season, Goldthorpe led Hunslet to all four domestic trophies.

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Latest Stories

- Advertisement -

UK News

- Advertisement -
- Advertisement -

Read the latest free supplements

Read the Town Crier, Le Rocher and a whole host of other subjects like mortgage advice, business, cycling, travel and property.