Son of Lam: same, same but different

Lachlan Lam was too young to remember seeing his father Adrian play rugby league.

But thanks to videos, he's been able to relive the big moments with his father - including Queensland's stunning 3-0 State of Origin upset over the NSW in 1995 and the 2000 NRL Grand Final when Lam Snr's Roosters faced the Broncos.

Lam was instrumental in in Queensland's '95 series upset over the Blues, scoring a try in the second Origin game and being voted Man of the Match in Game III at Lang Park in Brisbane.

"When I was younger he'd pull out the old videos and tell me how good he was," smiles young Lam.

"As I got older, I got interested in watching what worked for him on the field and what made him so successful.

"I'd get on YouTube at night and watched a lot of his Super League games with Wigan, and talk to him about them, which was awesome."

On Wednesday night, the proud father will be perched in the stand watching his son pull on the maroon and begin his own career as a member of Queensland's U20s side, chasing a historic victory against New South Wales at Suncorp Stadium.

Born in Rabaul in PNG, Lam Snr was a member of rookie coach Paul Vautin's '95 Origin side – a squad deprived of most of its star players because of the bitter Super League split.

They were officially dubbed the 'Nevilles' because many of their players didn't have high profiles.

But against all odds they totally embarrassed a representative-stacked NSW side tipped by every man and his dog to win the series easily.

Victory was achieved on the back of Origin's lowest score, with Queensland hooker Wayne Bartrim's 30th minute penalty goal the only points of the match played in Sydney.

The inspired Maroons followed up their first game win with a wild 20-12 victory in Melbourne before icing a 3-0 series win a 26-14 celebration at Lang Park.

Vautin recalled for QRL Media how Queensland was struggling to find a halfback for the series with champion No.7 Allan Langer banned along with his Broncos' teammates.

"There was in a selection meeting with Beetso (late Arthur Beetson) and Les Geeves (former selector) and someone tossed up the name Adrian Lam.

"I said: 'Where's he from?' and they said 'New Guinea'.

"I said: 'Wasn't that (PNG) joined on to North Queensland four billion years ago? We'll take him'. And that's how we got him in the team."


"I didn't know much about him but he was a good person and that was the first requirement and he mixed in really well.

"He was sharp, a good thinker, had a good short kicking game and he was pretty tough, he just kept getting up."

Lachlan, who was born in England and started playing rugby league with Wigan, was only two when his dad hung up the boots so he has no recollection of him playing.

He didn't have a lot of choice growing up over who he supported, given both his parents represented Queensland at sport.

In fact, it was their love of sport, and in particular their passion for football, that brought his parents together.

"My mum, Anita, who was from Bundaberg, and my dad both played a lot of different sports," he said.

"My mum played basketball, netball and touch for Queensland, that's how she met Dad.

"They both got picked in the Queensland touch team together and then got picked in the Australian teams together."

Lam, who has made his way into the Sydney Roosters development system, progressing through to the club's Under 20s, has just shifted into the halfback role which he believes has helped his game a lot.

"As a five-eighth, I used to wait for the game to come to me but as halfback, it's a more dominant role and you have to go and grab the game, which suits how I like to play," he said.

While his father was a lighter and nippier type with speed off the mark, Lachlan is more solidly built and a different style.

"I think we are very similar but very different at the same time.

Lam Snr was 76kgs and 175cm while his son is 85 kgs and 178cm.

"I think am probably physically stronger than he was. I am probably more powerful, but he was more nippy than me," Lachlan said.

"We are alike, but we are also different."

Lam said he scored a try in the World Cup for PNG last year and when he was in camp this year for the Pacific Test one of the coaching staff put up a split screen of his try alongside one of dad's World Cup tries and they were almost exactly the same.

"It was on the right-hand side of the field and he went through and beat the fullback the exact same way I did," said young Lam.

"It was pretty crazy, so maybe we are a bit alike."