The New South Wales Rugby League is deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Dennis Ward, aged 74.
Ward was a crafty halfback who played first grade in the NSWRFL Premiership for Canterbury-Bankstown and Manly-Warringah from 1965-1972. He was named Man of the Match after steering the Sea Eagles to their first premiership in 1972.
In 1969 Ward was selected for Australia and he also played for the Kangaroos in the 1972 Rugby League World Cup in France.
He played five games for NSW, scoring a try and kicking a field goal on debut in the 26-0 win over Queensland in Game I in 1969. He played three of the four games in that series which was won 4-0 by NSW, and played two of three games in the team that won the 1973 series 3-0.
Ward is perhaps best known for his role in ‘the greatest try never scored’ in the World Cup Final against Great Britain.
After putting up a bomb, Rugby League Immortal Graeme Langlands raced through, diving through the air to catch the ball and plant it down in the in-goal area. However, the referee disallowed the try believing that Langlands could not have got to the ball that quickly and ruled him offside.
The game appeared in the era before TV replays (the try was later found to have been legitimate) with the match ending in a 10-all draw.
The NSWRL offers its sincere condolences to his wife Cheryl, daughter Justine, sons Matthew and Benjamin and his many family and friends.