There are perhaps two enduring moments of Darren Lockyer’s career.
The first being him swooping upon an errant NSW pass in game three of the 2006 State of Origin series. It won Queensland the match, the shield and started the most dominant Origin period in history.
The second is of Lockyer laying on the ground, clutching the left side of his face as his eye slowly bruises and his check swells, only for him to stand, wave away the trainer and in extra time, sink the St George Illawarra Dragons with a field goal.
It’s a moment that wouldn’t happen in today’s day and age. He’d be removed from the field for a head injury assessment. And while playing through what could be a concussion isn’t something to write home about, playing with a fractured cheekbone is.
That’s what Darren Lockyer was about. Determination and the will to win.
He did it at every level. For Brisbane. For Queensland. For Australia.