Before each home game, we salute a former South Sydney great in hope that the football club catches on and starts doing it at home games. Similar to how Canterbury-Bankstown honour past players by having them present the 18th jersey on the field to a member, Parramatta have a past player raise the blue and gold flag and let’s not forget the viking horn down at Canberra.
We salute, David Peachey—Indigenous leader and former South Sydney, New South Wales and Australian (Super League) player.
Peachey played 257 First Grade games (Cronulla-Sutherland 232 [1994–2005] and South Sydney 25 [2006–7] scored 117 tries (Cronulla-Sutherland 110 and South Sydney 17). Represented Australia (Super League) once and New South Wales (Super League) three times scoring one try in 1997 and NSW State of Origin once in 2000 scoring one try and Country Origin in 2003 scoring one try. He played fullback throughout his career.
David Peachey was a cult hero at Cronulla-Sutherland and made his first grade debut in 1994 after being a product of their successful lower grade sides. He was originally from Dubbo but made a move to Sydney in his teens to make a career out of rugby league. Peachey was known for his speed and precision in attack and used to make an effort of placing the ball down just before the dead ball line when scoring tries. He was a fan favourite. Peachey was moved on at the end of the 2005 season and went to England to play for division one side Widnes.
Peachey struggled to adapt to living in England and made several trips home due to his sick father. This lead to Widnes sacking Peachey when they appointed a new President.
Souths signed Peachey midway through the 2006 season and he was part of their revival. Peachey made his debut for South Sydney in Round 13 2006 in a narrow loss to Canberra. The arrival of Peachey was met with a lot of fan fare with public praise given by former players Eric Simms and John Sattler. South Sydney were starting to attract quality players to the club.
Peachey had a turbulent 2007 season and was often overlooked by new coach Jason Taylor who kept Peachey out of first grade towards the back end of the season and even shifted Dean Widders to the centres in the quarter final game against Manly-Warringah. Players like Nathan Merritt and Fetuli Talanoa were used instead of Peachey towards the back end of the season. Rumours were floating around that Peachey wasn’t being picked due to salary cap reasons as a clause in his contract would be activated for more money if he played a certain amount of games. Peachey’s last game before retirement was in the NSW Premier League grand final for North Sydney who suffered a heartbreaking loss to Parramatta.