World Cup hero David Wilson is to be inducted into the Queensland Rugby Union Hall of Fame for his decorated career as a Wallaby and Queensland Reds flanker.
It is a worthy gong for Wilson, such an integral figure at flanker in golden periods for the Wallabies (1998-2000) and the Reds.
A rugby career which began in suburban Brisbane playing barefooted in the Easts Under-6s on winter mornings reached the pinnacle in the 1999 World Cup triumph.
Wilson will be one of three Queenslanders named to join the QRU Hall of Fame at the Season Launch Long Lunch on February 16 at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.
“Bomber” Wilson twice won the coveted Rothmans Medal for club and Queensland excellence (1989 and 1991) before his Test debut against Scotland in 1992.
He was a humble, team-orientated figure. He had family ties to Easts where his father had played in the club’s earliest teams.
The club honoured their greatest Wallaby with the naming of the David Wilson Field at Bottomley Park.
As a Queensland Reds fixture, he played 105 games. He was the team’s first-up skipper in 1998-99 and on more than 25 occasions in all between 1994-2000.
Twice, he was part of Reds packs which defied the odds to set up victories in Durban (1994) and Johannesburg (1995) to claim Super Ten trophies in tense finals abroad.
He was fast to the ball, non-stop with his work rate and fearless in the face of rival packs. Notably, he wore the stitches and scars of unsavoury French tactics after he 1999 World Cup final he contributed so much to.
He savoured every high as a Wallaby with the Test captaincy, wins over every major nation, multiple Bledisloe Cup wins and the 2000 Tri-Nations success.
“How important he was to the best Wallabies sides of his time (1998-2000) is underrated but never by those who played with him,” Wallabies great John Eales said.
“His back looked like a Sudoku board after most games (in the days of rucking). He was all over the ball and just went about his business. He was a standout No.7.”
Wilson will be inducted into the Queensland Rugby Union Hall of Fame at the Season Launch Long Lunch on February 16.