1986 Paramatta Stadium opening © Action Photographics

ON THIS DAY IN 1986: The Parramatta Eels played their first match at the brand new Parramatta Stadium, defeating the St George Dragons 36-6 in front of 27,000 Blue and Gold fans.

“Rugby League returned to Parramatta Stadium with a brilliant 40 minute pre-match extravaganza last Sunday. But the welcome home provided by the organisers was eclipsed with the Parramatta football machine cut loose against St George, a grand finalist last year. In an awesome display of power and speed the Eels ran riot to score a 36-6 victory …” - Big League

Peter Sterling’s performance earned him a rare 9-point rating in the Dally M contest for 1986, while Paul Mares made his comeback to first-grade after missing much of the previous season through injury. 

Captained by Ray Price and coached by John Monie, the Parramatta Eels went onto win the 1986 grand final and the club’s fourth Premiership.

Parramatta Eels:

1. Paul Taylor

2. Neil Hunt

3. Brian Jackson

4. Mark Laurie

5. Eric Grothe

6. Brett Kenny

7. Peter Sterling

8. Ray Price (c)

9. Steve Sharp

10. Peter Wynn

11. Stan Jurd

12. Michael Moseley

13. Terry Leabeater

 

St George Dragons:

1. Glen Burgess

2. Denis Kinchela

3. Michael O’Connor

4. Chris Johns

5. Steve Morris

6. Steve Linnane

7. Perry Haddock

8. Graeme Wynn

9. Marc Glanville

10. Geoff Selby

11. Craig Young (c)

12. Chris Guider

13. Chris Walsh