Manly’s first premiership-winning captain, Fred Jones, has died aged 79.

Jones had a long career with the Sea Eagles, playing 241 games with the club and captaining them to consecutive premierships in 1972 and 1973.

He also represented Australia at the 1968 World Cup, including the final win over France, and played in losing grand finals in 1968 and 1970

“Fred Jones was not only a wonderful hooker, but a true gentleman,” Manly chief executive Stephen Humphreys said.

“He made a wonderful contribution to the Sea Eagles.

“He will always be cherished as our first premiership-winning captain and he backed up that accomplishment to again lead the club to victory the following year.

“On behalf of everyone at the club, I offer our sincere condolences to Fred’s family. He has certainly left a wonderful legacy.”

A minute’s silence was held on Saturday before Manly’s clash with South Sydney clash at Brookvale Oval.

Jones sits sixth on the list of all-time games for the Sea Eagles.

Australian Rugby League Commission chairman Peter V’landys also paid tribute to the hooker on Saturday.

“I had the great pleasure of meeting Fred a couple of years ago at a function and realised why he was so popular as he possessed a charismatic personality which made you feel good about the world,” V’Landys said.

“He was the player and person that made rugby league special and unique.

“On behalf of the game, I offer my sincerest condolences to Fred’s family and friends, as well as the Sea Eagles.”

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