Billy Smith

Career Stats & Summary

Vital Statistics

Full Name
Billy John Smith
Born
Sunday, 12th July, 1942
Current Age
80 years and 78 days
Place Of Birth
Fremantle, Western Australia, Australia

Awards & Accolades

Harry Sunderland Medal
1966, 1967
National Rugby League Hall Of Fame
2008
NSWRL Hall Of Fame
2021

Biography

Despite playing in the centres in St George's 1963-65 grand final wins, Billy Smith became one of the most talented and tenacious halfbacks in post-war rugby league. A St George junior, Smith was graded as a centre (he made one appearance in 1961 against Manly) before cementing a place in first grade in 1963. Dragons’ captain-coach Norm Provan moved Smith to halfback the following year and the diminutive tackler with blistering pace made his debut for NSW and Australia (against France). Twice-winner of the Harry Sunderland Medal for best Australian player in an Ashes series, he tempered his brilliant skills with a dash of rashness on and off the field. Smith played Tests against France (1964), NZ (1965 and 1967) and Great Britain (1966) before touring with the 1967-68 Kangaroos. After captaining NSW in 1967, the formidable halfback played in five of the six Tests on tour and savoured victory with Australia's World Cup team the following year. A smashed jaw in 1969 saw him miss most of the season's rep matches, but in the following year he played in two Tests against Great Britain and was named vice-captain of Australia's World Cup team. Smith captained Australia in the opening match against Great Britain (an 11-4 loss) and his toughness was an integral part of Australia's subsequent win in the final. While he did not play for Australia again, his club form in the early 1970s never wavered. His partnership with Graeme Langlands after the club's last grand final success (1966) will be remembered as one of the finest the game has seen. The two champions had an intuitive knowledge of what the other was about to do, but despite their efforts St George was beaten in the 1971 and 1975 grand finals. (Smith had one late taste of success in 1972 when he returned from injury and played in the club's premiership-winning Third Grade team). Smith finished his career in reserve grade in 1977 but not before passing Norm Provan's club record for grade games (296 games). He later coached lower grades with Cronulla with some notoriety.

- ALAN WHITICKER

Career Statistics

All statistics shown in this section are based only on data available in the RLP database, and are not necessarily a complete and/or 100% accurate representation of a player's career. This information should be used as a guide only. If you see a question mark (?), it denotes that the figure is not available.

To view a list of corresponding matches, click on the List button.

Competitions

Competition   App T G   FG Pts W L D Win %  
NRL Finals 24 2 -   4 10 13 10 1 54.17% List
NRL 75 30 3   44 161 41 32 2 54.67% List
Interstate Matches 16 1 1   - 5 13 2 1 81.25% List
Tour Matches Australia 19 - -   - - 12 6 1 63.16% List
Test Series 18 - -   - - 11 6 1 61.11% List
City vs Country Firsts 5 1 -   - 3 5 0 0 100.00% List
The Ashes 7 - -   - - 4 3 0 57.14% List
World Cup 8 3 -   3 15 6 2 0 75.00% List
Tour Matches New South Wales Firsts 1 - -   1 2 0 0 1 0.00% List


International

Test Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Australia 1964-68, 1970 27 3 -   3 15 18 8 1 66.67% List
Overall 1964-1970 27 3 0   3 15 18 8 1 66.67% List

World Cup Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Australia 1964-1970 8 3 -   3 15 6 2 0 75.00% List
Overall 1968-1970 8 3 0   3 15 6 2 0 75.00% List


Representative

Australia - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
NSW Firsts 1964-71, 1973 17 1 1   1 7 13 2 2 76.47% List
NSW City Firsts 1965-68, 1970 5 1 -   - 3 5 0 0 100.00% List
Overall 1964-1973 22 2 1   1 10 18 2 2 81.82% List


Club Career

Australian League Matches - By Year

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
St George NSWRFL 1963 ? 4 -   - 12  
St George NSWRFL 1964 ? 5 -   - 15  
St George NSWRFL 1965 ? 5 -   - 15  
St George NSWRFL 1966 ? 4 -   - 12  
St George NSWRFL 1967 ? 3 -   3 15  
St George NSWRFL 1968 ? 1 -   10 23  
St George NSWRFL 1969 ? - -   2 4  
St George NSWRFL 1970 ? 1 -   6 15  
St George NSWRFL 1971 ? 3 3   7 22  
St George NSWRFL 1972 ? 1 -   2 5  
St George NSWRFL 1973 ? 2 -   8 14  
St George NSWRFL 1974 19 - -   3 3 9 10 0 47.37% List
St George NSWRFL 1975 21 - -   1 1 14 6 1 66.67% List
St George NSWRFL 1976 13 1 -   2 5 6 7 0 46.15% List
St George NSWRFL 1977 1 - -   - - 1 0 0 100.00% List
Overall 1963-1977 ? 30 3   44 161 ? ? ? ?  

Australian League Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
St George 1963-77 ? 1 -   6 9 ? ? ? ?  
St George 1974-77 54 1 -   6 9 30 23 1 55.56% List
Overall 1963-1977 ? 30 3   44 161 ? ? ? ?  

Australian Finals Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
St George 1974-1976 4 - -   - - 2 2 0 50.00% List
Overall 1975-1976 4 0 0   0 - 2 2 0 50.00% List

All Australian Club Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
St George 1963-71, 1973-77 ? 2 -   6 12 ? ? ? ?  
St George 1974-1977 70 2 -   6 12 39 29 2 55.71% List
Overall 1963-1977 ? 31 3   44 164 ? ? ? ?  

Your Say

Anonymous says: Pound for pound, no better player than Bill. (02/04/2016)

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