The NRL has struck a special medal to honour Melbourne Captain Cameron Smith, who will on Saturday break the all-time record for NRL matches.
Smith will be presented with the medal by NRL CEO Todd Greenberg following the Melbourne-Parramatta Qualifying Final at AAMI Park, which will be his 356th NRL match.
Smith will break Darren Lockyer’s all-time premiership appearance record of 355 matches against the Eels.
Like Lockyer, Smith has played all matches for one Club.
“This is quite simply an extraordinary achievement,” NRL CEO Todd Greenberg said.
“He has been an incredible player over the course of his long career with Melbourne, but more than that, he has been a wonderful leader and an ambassador for rugby league.
“It will be a privilege to be in Melbourne to be a part of the celebrations for this momentous achievement.
“As a game, we felt it was necessary to honour the achievement with something unique.
“The game owes Cameron an enormous debt of gratitude and on behalf of the NRL, I congratulate him on this magnificent achievement.”
The concept was created by the NRL’s Awards and Recognition Committee, and will be replicated for further significant records in the game. It will be the first medal of its kind presented to a player.