Nudgee College Rugby

1st XV Rugby Cap Project


Since the College’s inception, just under 24,000 boys have had the opportunity to find their niche at the school built on the mound at Boondall. Arguably, the mandate for the College rests with its commitment to providing an education for ‘boys from the bush’ and, within that mandate, the beating heart of the College is enlivened by the game of Rugby. Much has been written and spoken about where Nudgee College Rugby sits in the landscape of Australian Rugby. 

It is fitting in our 130th year to celebrate that story and to acknowledge the 1,685 fellows who have, to date, had the honour, privilege, responsibility and challenge of wearing the famous butcher stripe with the red number on the back and the miraculous medal sewn under the College crest on the front.

Significant research was undertaken by Br Darcy Murphy (NC Community 1969-73, 1975, 1983-89, 1991-95), History of St Joseph’s Nudgee College Sport 1891-1991, and then by Associate Professor Martin Kerby (NC staff 2000-16) in Of Great and Good Men in 2010.

This year, Nudgee College Archivist, Mr John Sayer, cross-referenced these two works and systematically identified the multiple year players. The very early years are scant with regards to names of players so those caps have been withheld in the hope that descendants may come forward and the register can then be corrected.

The decision was made to move from just initials to the names (or nicknames, where appropriate) of the players. This involved careful scrutiny of the enrolment registers, the accounts ledgers and the Annuals. Once an initial list was generated, the process of checking for omissions and/or errors was embarked upon. He spent time with many members of the Nudgee College community from each of the eras of last 60 years (Mr Jack Wagner, Mr Greg Hose, Mr James Delahunty, Mr Ron Ure, Mr Michael Senior, Mr Matt Miller, Mr Anthony Connellan, Mr Aaron Knott, Mr Gerard Alexander, Mr Sean Graham, Mr Andrew Scotney and Mr Tom Sayer). With help from them and their peers, names trickled back. Each of the conversations focused not so much on those who were on the list but also on the names of fellows who may have played only one or two games and therefore did not ‘make the photo’ at season’s end. 

This list endeavours to celebrate every boy who got the opportunity to start a game in the Nudgee College 1st XV strip. Sadly, many would have completed a whole pre-season and been injured in the first game and then not included in the team list at the end of the year. This list rectifies that. Thus, significant focus was given to the names of fellows in the 2nds and 16As who may well have stepped up.

This document is to celebrate the effort, skill, commitment, passion, loyalty and sacrifice that these 1,685 names represent. It is a living document because, inevitably, there will be errors which we need to address. 

If you are aware of a player who has been missed or misrepresented, please contact John at the College and he will amend the record. Boys who ran on to cover an injury are not being included in the list. Eventually, we will arrive at a list that we are comfortable is accurate. All efforts are being made to ensure the information is factually correct. 


Click here to view the 1st XV Rugby Cap Project.

To contact Mr John Sayer about corrections: 


Phone: (07) 3865 0421