Eric Norton "Nookie" Tindall
- 564Wallaby Number
‘Nookie’ Tindall was a first class halfback, strong in attack and courageous in defence, with a long, accurate pass and the acceleration to make significant breaks. Educated at Sydney Grammar School, Tindall became a long-time stalwart of the Drummoyne Club however he then found it nigh impossible to win selection for New South Wales, let alone Australia, due to the presence of Ken Catchpole and John Hipwell. Nonetheless he earned a debut for Sydney against Queensland in 1968 and then for New South Wales against Fiji the following year.
Following that state match Tindall was given the honour of captaining an Australian XV against the Fijians at Ballymore. Unfortunately that match did not qualify for Test status due to the fact that the senior Wallaby squad was on tour in South Africa at the time. Tindall continued to serve an extended apprenticeship until 1973 when Hipwell suffered a foot injury which ruled him out of the second Test against Tonga at Ballymore.
In the shadow of his 29th birthday Tindall was called up to make his Test debut. Although he scored one of the Wallabies’ two tries the match became memorable for all the wrong reasons as Australia were sensationally beaten 11-16 in one of the great all-time Test upsets.
Tindall won his first Test cap at halfback in combination with Geoff Richardson in the 2nd Test, 11-16 loss to Tonga in Brisbane. He scored his one and only Test try to become the 48th Wallaby to score a try on debut.