Johns, Thurston, Halligan and Spencer to face off in Nines kicking comp

Carlos Spencer will make a return to Eden Park in February when he takes part in a kicking competition during the Downer NRL Auckland Nines against rugby league identities Andrew Johns, Johnathan Thurston and Daryl Halligan.

The Beko Legends Kick-off charity goalkicking challenge will raise money for the Nines' official charity The Rising Foundation.

Johns, a league Immortal, three-time Golden Boot winner Thurston, who plays for the Cowboys, and former Kiwi Halligan and former All Black and Blues player Spencer, will be joined in the competition by a New Zealand-based kicker who will qualify via a social media challenge.

Thurston, who pulled out of the NRL All-Stars clash to concentrate on his team's World Club Challenge against Leeds next month, has said he is unlikely to play in the Nines tournament.

Up to $20,000 is up for grabs for charity in the kicking competition which will be held just prior to the final on February 7, with the winner picking up a $2000 home appliance package.

The challenge has been tagged as three of league's greatest points scorers "against a man who ruled Eden Park for a decade".

Johns said: "I am really looking forward to it. With goalkicking you can have a laugh about it, but I don't think it has ever been done before where you have some of the greatest points scorers and goalkickers in history shooting it out. It's really exciting. I think the crowd will get right into it and it will be pretty special.
Greats t
"I'm honoured to be a part of it really. And I think it's sensational that the money goes to charity. It's a great cause. Let's hope we can kick some goals and raise some money for them."

Contestants:

Andrew Johns: Rugby league Immortal and second highest points scorer in NRL history.
Johnathan Thurston: Second among active players with 1794 points. Holds record for most State of Origin Points in history.
Daryl Halligan: Ace goal kicker and goalkicking coach. Fourth highest points scorer in NRL history.
Carlos Spencer: Over 500 points for Auckland in the NPC and over 600 for the Blues in Super Rugby, to go with 291 points for the All Blacks in 35 tests.
Plus one domestic kicker.

Rules:

Six kicks each. $700 per successful kick donate by Beko to the Rising Foundation to a maximum of $20,000.

Shot-clock counts down 90 seconds
KICK 1: 30 METRES OUT IN FRONT - 1 POINT
KICK 2: 20 METRES OUT, 10 METRES IN FROM LEFT SIDELINE - 2 POINTS
KICK 3: 20 METRE LINE, RIGHT ON LEFT SIDELINE - 3 POINTS
KICK 4: 20 METRES OUT, 10 METRES IN FROM RIGHT SIDELINE - 2 POINTS
KICK 5: 20 METRE LINE, RIGHT ON RIGHT SIDELINE - 3 POINTS
KICK 6: 40 METRES OUT, ON SIDELINE, OR HALF WAY, RIGHT IN FRONT - 5 POINTS
JOKER - Each player has the opportunity to play the joker to double their points on that kick.

- NZ Herald

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