Suncorp Stadium’s reputation as the intimidating fortress of the Queensland Maroons has been bolstered further today, with the unveiling of a statue of Queensland rugby league legend Allan Langer.
The statue was unveiled a day before Langer’s former team the Queensland Maroons battle the NSW Blues at the stadium, for the first State of Origin match of the year.
Minister for Sport Mick de Brenni said the statue would join fellow Maroon icons Wally Lewis, Arthur Beetson, Mal Meninga and Darren Lockyer, already immortalised in bronze at the venue’s Northern Plaza.
“This Stadium has been the site of many of Alfie’s feats, so it’s great to have his likeness inspire fans as they enter the stadium,” Mr de Brenni said.
“Alfie was one of the most devastating halfbacks of his era, playing 288 first grade games with the Brisbane Broncos, 34 for Queensland, including five as captain, and 24 for Australia,” he said.
“In retirement he’s continued to contribute to the rugby league community, working as an assistant coach for the Queensland Maroons, the Australian national team, and the Brisbane Broncos.
“Most importantly, he’s been the inspiration for many kids in picking up a ball, joining a team, and having a go.”
Mr Langer said he was humbled by the acknowledgement and hoped it would help spur his Maroon teammates to victory.
“It’s a wonderful feeling, for myself, my family and all my former teammates and colleagues that have supported me over the years,” Mr Langer said.
“This is Maroons territory, and I hope the statue will help create an intimidating atmosphere for Blues players and an exciting and encouraging space for Queensland fans to cheer on the best team in the country.”
Former Origin Greats Executive Chairman, Gene Miles said it was an inspiring and worthy achievement.
“Alfie conquered every challenge in the rugby league world, and it’s great his impressive career and contribution to Queensland is being recognised,” Mr Miles said.
“He proved time and time again that size doesn’t matter, that a small player can not only succeed but go on to reach the very highest level in the game,” he said.