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Vale Olsen Filipaina

Wests Tigers would like to extend its condolences to the family of Olsen Filipaina following his recent passing.

A much-loved member of the club, Filipaina played 81 games across five seasons for the Balmain Tigers in the early 1980s — scoring 19 tries and kicking 83 goals.

Following his time at Balmain, he continued his career at Eastern Suburbs and North Sydney Bears.

Known as 'The Big O', Filipaina later captained Ryde-Eastwood to victory in the inaugural Metropolitan Cup final of 1990.

The New Zealand international played 28 Tests for his country and was part of the Auckland side that defeated Great Britain, Australia and France in the space of 20 days in 1977.

Filipaina's family released a statement on Thursday afternoon confirming his passing, saying: "he was a fighter and fought for 16 days in ICU but our heavenly father needed a stand-off for his rugby league team, and now he has the best."

"A life so beautifully lived deserves to be beautifully remembered and we will announce more details on celebrating his life in the coming days."

The thoughts of all at Wests Tigers are with Olsen's family and friends at this time.

Acknowledgement of Country

Wests Tigers respect and honour the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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