Whilst the focus during and after the game will be on retiring Broncos prop Petero Civoniceva, the do-or-die clash against the Panthers in Brisbane will be special for another reason – with Broncos and QLD legends Wally Lewis and Gene Miles, to be inducted into the Broncos Hall of Fame pre-game.
With the threat of 6 consecutive losses looming, the club hopes that the announcement of the two legends as Hall of Famers, can inspire the players to a victory, and potentially, a finals berth.
Lewis and Miles were the first two players signed by the club in 1988, but their strong friendship almost took a hit, when their then coach in Wayne Bennett, controversially stripped the captaincy from Lewis, and gave it to Miles.
“This is a real highlight for me, I am very honoured,” said Miles, who played 72 games for the Broncos between 1988-91.
“I started at the Broncos late in my career but it was very special to be part of their foundation team.
“To captain the side after Wally wasn’t ideal, but it’s nice to know everyone has moved on.
“It was a shame the way it did happen, we had our differences for a few years, but time has healed everything and we’re good mates now.”
He may have only played two seasons with the club, but for Lewis, he treasured every minute and every game, during his time with the Broncos.
“This means a lot,” Lewis said of his Hall of Fame status.
“It was an honour to be part of the first Broncos team and it provided an immediate challenge.
“We always used to cop the criticism that those blokes from Queensland can play Origin but they wouldn’t make it in the Sydney competition.
“We proved them wrong. There weren’t too many more memorable moments than that first game, thrashing Manly (44-10) was a performance that lives long in the memory.”
Broncos CEO Paul White also had a say: “It’s fantastic. Wally and Gene were our first two captains and there’s no doubt we were able to build the club around them.
“They gave us instant credibility.”