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Monday, 11 May 1987
Page: 2957

Mr McVEIGH(10.15) —Yesterday, together with many other thousands of people, I had the opportunity of being present at a beautiful football ground called Ballymore in Brisbane, Queensland. It was a very significant occasion. The southern Press, not known for their accuracy in predicting what might happen when Queensland challenges New South Wales, indicated that the Queensland rugby XV would be defeated. As I know that you come from the delightful State of Victoria, Madam Speaker, I would just like to advise you that rugby is a game which a few of us on earth play but which is played fulltime in heaven, and so it may be that we will have the opportunity of playing it on the great fields up above! But it is interesting to note that Queensland absolutely annihilated New South Wales and I say that, unless in the future New South Wales can contribute to a more meaningful and significant contest, it might well be that the Australian team will have to be chosen after contest between the Queensland A and the Queensland B teams. I suppose it is unfortunate that we will have to give a few places in the team to New South Wales players when we play in the forthcoming World Cup rugby contest. Fourteen Queenslanders made that team but we had to have 12 from New South Wales. Of course, it was balanced up a little insofar as the coach, Alan Jones, who is regarded very highly worldwide for his many excellent--

Dr Watson —A great footballer.

Mr McVEIGH —Well, he worked for the National Party of Australia here in Canberra; we moulded and chiselled him into shape. However, more importantly, he was born on a farm in the Darling Downs and he was educated in that great cradle of rugby union, the Toowoomba Grammar School, a well known school in my electorate. However, getting back to the rugby game at the Ballymore ground in Brisbane; it was beautiful to be there and to witness both the science and the art of rugby. It was magnificent to see a demonstration of the skills involved, and how refreshingly rewarding it was to see that art put forward in such a scientific way. We saw the Queensland team's eight forwards absolutely annihilate the eight forwards from New South Wales. Our forwards took complete control and ground the opposition down through their power, strength and technique, so much so that the smallest man on the ground, Brian Smith, was able to take the ball, have a look around, stroll across and score a very easy four-pointer against, presumably, the best halfback, Farr-Jones from New South Wales, it is claimed that the world has at present. It needs to be said that Queensland had four of its champions out-Lynagh, Campbell, Moon and Miller. Four of our top men were out and yet we got three tries, which in rugby is the supreme effort, while the New South Welshmen were able only to get points on the board through the ability of someone to kick goals.

It is interesting to note that, when we had them beaten, ground into the dust, they resorted to cheating. How humiliating it was-and I felt sorry and wept a furtive tear-to see a New South Welshman come back and try to steal a foot of extra space while trying to get closer to the goal line, with the referee saying: `Hey, Joe, come back here; we play it fair'. And I saw one of the New South Welshmen, in sheer frustration, use his fist against the head of a Queenslander-his fist, mind you-when this is supposed to be a gentle and courteous game, a game that is played in heaven. At this, quite fittingly, the referee said: `Look, we play this game according to the rules of rugby, not according to the rules followed in New South Wales'. I want to pay a tribute to Bob Templeton, the Queensland coach, for his last effort in coaching the Queensland team. I salute Bob and say that Queenslanders are proud of him and proud for him.

I want to conclude on this note: There is a lesson to be learned. No one should ever take anyone from Queensland for granted. Remember that we are tough, we are loyal. Unfortunately loyalty does not seem to permeate this place. We are not dishonest, we do not tell lies and we play the game according to the rules. If anyone forgets about Queensland, just as New South Wales did yesterday, he is in for a shock. In politics, just take note of what happens in Queensland and take note that we mean what we say. We are going to come down here after the next Federal election and we are going to have the right policies and we are going to implement those policies.

Madam SPEAKER —Order! The honourable member's time has expired.