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The fans

The fans

Supporters of rugby league can be the family and friends of players, or volunteers, mascots and club members. All of these people are passionate about their rugby league. The game wouldn't be the same without them.

Mark Wallington, wearing a magpie costume, on a football oval with cheer leaders and spectators in the background.
Mascot Mark the Magpie (Mark Wallington) rallies the crowd at a game in 1999. Photo: Newspix/News Limited.

Mascots

Tony Wood wearing a Canberra Raiders uniform and viking helmet.
Viktor the Viking (Tony Wood). Photo: Colin Whelan Action Photographics.

Mark Wallington became Mark the Magpie in 1979.

For the next 10 years he entertained supporters in his distinctive magpie costume. His on-field antics made him a favourite with fans.

On his retirement in 1988 he was made a life member of the Western Suburbs Leagues Club.


Viktor the Viking has been Tony Wood's alter ego for 26 years.

Wood has supported the Canberra Raiders since their debut in 1981.

He was inspired to become their mascot after seeing Mark the Magpie at Lidcombe Oval.

Fanatical footy fans

Long-term fans of the Balmain (now Wests) Tigers will no doubt remember Laurie Nichols. From the mid-1960s until his death in 2000, the number one Balmain fan was seen at every game, wearing a singlet and revving up the players with his shadow-boxing moves as they ran onto the field.

Tigers' fan Laurie Nichols with player James Webster.
Tigers fan Laurie Nichols in his trademark singlet, left, celebrates a win over the Canberra Raiders with player James Webster. Photo: Newpsix/News Limited.
Dawn Hill with a group of women dressed in red and white.
Dawn Hill, front second from left, with the Red and White Ladies in Townsville, 2007. Courtesy Dawn Hill.

Dawn Hill has been a fan of rugby league since childhood and even married a Manly footballer.

Since moving to Redcliffe, Queensland, over 40 years ago she has been one of the Redcliffe Dolphins' strongest supporters through her group of volunteers, who dress in the team's red and white colours.

Australian supermodel Elle Macpherson has been a fan of the Cronulla Sharks since she was three years old. Macpherson grew up in Sutherland Shire, Sydney, and went to games with her father, brother and sister. She was awarded the club's number one supporter jersey and medallion in 1994 in recognition of her ongoing support.

Left: Front view of medallion which has a shark symbol in the centre and is inscribed with 'Perpetual Member Cronulla Sutherland Football Club'. Right: Back view of medallion which is inscribed with 'Sharks Club Privileged Member'.
Elle MacPherson's number one Cronulla Sharks fan medallion. Courtesy Peter Gow. Photo: Lannon Harley.