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September 4: Grothe thrills; Thurston prevails

On this day in rugby league history, Eric Grothe scores one of the great tries, Shane Webcke bids farewell and Johnathan Thurston pips Robbie Farah.

1909

A crowd of 18,000 watch the first of the Kangaroos-Wallabies matches at the Agricultural Ground.

1983

Parramatta winger Eric Grothe beats five defenders to score spectacular semi-final try against Canterbury, with the Eels going on to win 30-22.

Eric Grothe Snr destroys the Bulldogs

1989

Raiders forward and England international Elliott Whitehead was born. Whitehead's career began at Bradford in 2009, quickly becoming a regular at that club before switching to Catalans Dragons in 2013. He was an instant hit in the NRL after joining Canberra for the 2016 season, now part of a growing England contingent at the club along with Josh Hodgson, John Bateman and Ryan Sutton.

1995

Warriors lock and 2018 Dally M Interchange Player of the Year Jazz Tevaga was born. A four-time international with Samoa, Tevaga excelled as a bench middle forward or hooker before making the No.13 jersey his own this season.

2006

A near-capacity Suncorp Stadium crowd of 47,193 turns out for Shane Webcke's final regular season match on home soil as the Broncos warm up for the finals with a 36-12 defeat of the Warriors.

Also on this day, Bulldogs winger Hazem El Masri produced one of the great goalkicking performances of his career in his team's 30-22 win over Penrith. El Masri kicked five goals from five attempts in gale-force winds and driving rain.

Finally South Sydney winger Nathan Merritt finished as the NRL's leading tryscorer after 26 rounds. Merritt's 22 tries was the highest tally by a Rabbitohs player in more than 50 years.

Rabbitohs winger Nathan Merritt in 2006.
Rabbitohs winger Nathan Merritt in 2006. ©NRL Photos

2007

North Queensland halfback Johnathan Thurston pips Wests Tigers' Robbie Farah to claim his second Dally M Medal in three years. Thurston polled 13 points out of a possible 15 over the last five rounds of the competition to claim the award.

This article contains information from the official records of NRL historian David Middleton.