He was one of five Sharks Immortals named to that honour in 2005, then chosen by an expert panel as the half back in the Club’s Team of the Half Century, with Tommy Bishop a special guest at Cronulla training on the Sunshine Coast today.
The former English International and the Sharks Captain Coach in the Grand Final season of 1973, the Sharks would be hoping some of the Bishop magic might rub off as they look to return to the winner’s circle against Souths on Saturday.
Coach Josh Hannay introduced Bishop, now 80 years of age and residing in Queensland, to the Sharks team at their final video session prior to the Captain’s run, with the mercurial former number seven recounting the amazing run of his ’73 team to qualify for the premiership decider.
Bishop reminded the players of the special talent that was Steve Rogers, 18 years old during that season, spoke of inspirational skipper Greg Pierce and of his fellow Brit and forwards enforcer Cliff Watson, all who were instrumental in the success of the Cronulla side in 1973.
“It is an honour to have Tommy in the room and to have him make the effort to come and visit us,” Hannay said in introducing Bishop to the playing group.
“He was Captain-Coach from 1970 to 1973, I’m not sure how he would have managed that,” Hannay added with a chuckle in imagining the responsibility an enormity of carrying out the dual duties.
With Bishop casting an eye over proceedings, the Sharks completed their preparations ahead of their Magic Round match.