I first came across a young Brad Harrison as a brash, abrasive inside centre, fresh out of colts and into Grade, in a club that was on the rise and on the crest of a great era. Brad was incredibly confident of his own ability, and with good reason, he was very good! What made him better was a switch to the back row!!
That switch, which saw him become a real rugby player, the one with single digits on their back, saw him become one of the most feared and respected players in the competition, any inside back in the Shute Shield during that period needed to have their wits about them, even long after they had passed the ball!! Fair to say he wouldn’t have been on many opposing players’ Christmas card lists, I’m sure our very own current 1st Grade coach would attest to this fact……hopefully, they exchanged warm welcomes in the past few weeks!!
Brad was a tough, combative, extraordinarily competitive player who was a standout player in a golden period for the club, a period which brought great success to Gordon and one in which I personally believe that Sydney club rugby was at it’s zenith, its finest, highest and most competitive and Brad stood amongst the very best.
Brad graduated from Sydney Grammar School and played two years in colts before really finding his feet in grade, a few lower-grade games, and the aforementioned positional switch which led to an amazing career.
111 1st XV grade appearances for Gordon, no mean feat, and representative selections soon followed most notably the Waratahs and then the Australian Barbarians and Universities sides.
Then being awarded, which I consider his highest accolade, the Sydney Morning Herald player of the year award in 1994, the most prestigious player award in the land at that time.
A constant member of Gordon First Grade sides during one of the most competitive periods in the club’s history, a period which saw the club win numerous Premierships throughout the grades, most notably the 1993 and 1995 1st Grade Shute Shield premierships teams, which he was an integral member of, arguably the amongst finest the club has produced ( I look forward to a debate with the FOG’s on that one!! ).
I congratulate Brad on his new role as Club President, I’m sure he will bring the same tenacity, will and leadership that he brought as a player, someone who we were very glad we played with and not against. I hope his Presidency see’s the Club build upon the Tartan Pride and success that we as a club have all worked so hard for recently and hopefully we continue to see Gordon Rugby assume its rightful place at the top of the tree.
A Gordon For Me