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LES BOYD

Second Row 1980-1984

Les Boyd, a talented, aggressive second row forward, was born in Nyngan and raised in Cootamundra. He toured England with the undefeated Australian Schoolboys in 1972 but it was another four years before he linked with the coach of that tour, Roy Masters, at Wests. Boyd grabbed headlines immediately with his talent as an explosive runner matched only by his aggression, on the field.

The quietly spoken country boy was in constant trouble with referees and the League. In 1978, he had a suspension overturned in equity court on the basis of being denied 'natural justice', only to be retried and found guilty of the same charge. After a poor year in 1977 due to injuries and suspensions, Boyd was finally able to channel his talents at international level. He toured with the 1978 Kangaroos, proving unstoppable in the final two Tests against Great Britain. After playing against France, he then starred in the three-Test win over Great Britain in 1979.

Boyd came to Manly in 1980 on a huge contract and initially his career blossomed. He played 73 matches for Manly scoring 14 tries. Boyd toured NZ in 1980, played Tests against France (1981) and NZ (1982) before making his second Kangaroo tour. Boyd had no peer as a Test forward in the early 1980s but following Manly's grand final loss to Parramatta in 1982. he fell foul of the League's clean-up campaign under Judiciary Chairman Jim Comans.

In 1983 he was cited for his tackle on Qld's Darryl Brohman in a State of Origin clash that left his opponent with a smashed jaw, Boyd was suspended for 12 months (and sued by Brohman which was later settled out of court) but when he returned in 1984, he was again suspended for gouging Canterbury hooker Billy Johnstone. His 18 month suspension effectively ended his Sydney career.

He later played for Warrington in England, Cootamundra, in darwin and Harden-Murrumbah.

Sources: Whiticker & Hudson 2002, p. 50-51; Smith 1991, pp 137, 146.