Mark Graham predicts he’ll be the first of many New Zealanders to be inducted into the NRL Hall of Fame after becoming the first Kiwi to receive the honour last night in Sydney.
The former Kiwis captain, who played for Norths Brisbane and the North Sydney Bears in the 1980s, was unaware that New Zealanders were eligible for the honour but said it was an honour and a privilege to be in such company.
Now that New Zealanders are eligible, Graham said there were countless of his fellow Kiwi greats worthy of the Hall of Fame.
"There’s numerous, obviously Ruben (Wiki) and Stacey Jones, Stephen Kearney, there’s any number of them,” he said.
"I'm very fortunate to be the first but there's going to be many more for sure."
Graham paid credit to his “great mentor and a great friend” Graham Lowe during his speech.
“Graham coached me as a junior, went to senior football together and international football together, we travelled overseas and he coached and I played for Norths Brisbane for a year,” Graham told 1News.
The Hall of Fame was not the only honour on the horizon for Graham, who was set to become the subject of a documentary by his filmmaker son.
“I’m not unhappy about it,” Graham chuckled.
He hoped the importance of hard work and self-belief would come across.
“Hard work, you get something for it,” he said.