As a young child, Brydens Lawyers NSW coach Brad Fittler spent plenty of time in the park imitating the goalkicking style of the legendary Ross Conlon. On Saturday he finally got the chance to take him on.
Conlon was a special guest who turned up at the University of New England (UNE) in Armidale for a children's coaching clinic with the NSW Blues.
The True Blue was quickly spotted in the crowd by Fittler, who was keen to take him in a goalkicking challenge to see who could pull off the better Ross Conlon (WATCH THE VIDEO).
"I just remember him so vividly as a kid when I was starting to kick and we used to kick like him," Fittler told NSWRL.com.au.
"I can still picture him. He was amazing and he's such a good fella, a good humble fella. I'm glad he turned up."
Conlon, who landed 598 goals during his career playing for Western Suburbs, Canterbury-Bankstown and Balmain, was one of the pioneers of around-the-corner goalkicking.
Conlon, who developed his style from playing soccer up until the age of 15, also had a distinctive sideways shuffle before moving in to strike the ball.
"My goalkicking is getting back in the dim, dark past now but there's always someone that remembers that 80s period and me kicking goals," Conlon said.
"The fact was I was one of the first players (alongside England's John Gray) to kick that around-the-corner style. By the time I finished in '88 there were only a couple of toe-pokers left.
"I grew up in a league-mad town and my family is tied up in league but I played soccer and didn't play league until I was about 15.
"The coach said one day, 'We need someone to kick a goal' and I said, 'I can kick a ball, give me a crack' and I didn't even think about doing it the other way.
"I stood it up and went back and kicked it like I would a soccer ball so that's where it started.
"I can remember those first couple of years people were laughing up on the north coast where I played.
"I was going to grounds and standing the ball up and before you'd kick it, people would laugh and say stuff and then all of a sudden you'd hit it all right so they stopped."
So who had the last laugh between Conlon and Fittler?
"I think Freddy went pretty good," Conlon said.
"He told me he used to watch me growing up and he was pretty close. I don't think he missed the mark by too much at all."