'Terribly sad day': League world mourns death of 'Immortal' Norm Provan

·3-min read
Dragons legend Norm Provan (right) is seen here with fellow league great Arthur Summons in 2008.
Dragons legend Norm Provan (right) is being remembered as one of the finest second rowers in rugby league history. Pic: Getty

The Australian sporting community is in mourning after news that rugby league 'Immortal Norm Provan has died at the age of 89.

One of the finest second-rowers in the history of the game, Provan won 10 premierships as part of the St George Dragons' golden era between 1956 and 1966.

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His image still remains in the game today, as part of the NRL's trophy in the Gladiators image alongside Western Suburbs rival Arthur Summons.

After debuting for the Dragons in 1951, he played 256 games for the club as well as 19 matches for NSW and 14 Tests for Australia.

He was named in Australian rugby league's team of the century in 2008 and was elevated to 'Immortal' status in 2018.

His death comes after a tragic year for the sport, following the deaths of fellow immortal Bob Fulton and league legend Tommy Raudonikis.

News of Provan's passing has led to an outpouring of tributes on social media, as fans remember one of the giants of rugby league.

Norm Provan's accomplishments unparalleled

Provan was regarded as the key component of St George’s record-breaking 11 straight premierships between 1956-1966.

He played in an astonishing ten of those grand final triumphs, including four as player/coach.

The Dragons legend was controversially overlooked as one of the sport's first 'Immortals', before finally being given the honour in 2018.

He was not well enough to attend the awards night at the time, with daughter Sue McCloud accepting the honour on Provan's behalf.

“We’ve always looked up to dad. He’s always been immortal to us,” she said at the Immortals induction in 2018.

“To have him receive this, especially now, means an awful lot to all of us - and to him.

“He hasn’t been very well so he hasn’t been able to come down today for this.”

Pictured here, Sharks captain Paul Gallen shakes hands with Norm Provan (L) after winning the 2016 NRL grand final.
Sharks captain Paul Gallen shakes hands with Norm Provan (L) and Arthur Summons after winning the 2016 NRL grand final. Pic: Getty

Veteran coach Wayne Bennett declared earlier this year that Provan's accomplishments in the game were unrivalled.

“I don’t know anybody in the game who did more than Norm Provan,” Bennett said.

“He was part of 10 premierships … we all fight hard to win one and he won 10.

“Our NRL premiership (the Provan-Summons trophy) is named after him.

“He played for Australia and went on to coach and he is an outstanding man. He was a superstar of his era. He epitomises what the game is about.”

with AAP

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