Craig Wing

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Craig Wing
Personal information
Born (1979-12-26) 26 December 1979 (age 34)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Height 180 cm (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 89 kg (14 st 0 lb)
Playing information
Rugby league
Position five-eighth, Halfback, hooker
Club
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1998–1999 South Sydney 43 12 0 0 48
2000–2007 Sydney Roosters 185 66 1 0 264
2008–2009 South Sydney 28 8 1 0 34
Total 256 86 2 0 346
Representative
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2008 Prime Minister's XIII 1 0 0 0 0
2001–2009 City Origin 6 3 0 0 12
2003–2009 New South Wales 12 2 0 0 8
2002–2005 Australia 17 2 0 0 8
Rugby union
Position Centre/Fly half
Club
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2010–2012 NTT Shining Arcs 21 10 5 0 50
2012–2013 Kobelco Steelers 10 5 0 0 25
Total 31 15 5 0 75
Representative
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2013 Japan 6 1 0 0 5
As of 3 October 2009
Source: Rugby League Project

Craig Wing (born 26 December 1979) is an Australia-born Japanese rugby union player. He currently plays rugby union in Japan. A former rugby league player for New South Wales State of Origin and Australian international utility player, Wing played for South Sydney Rabbitohs and Sydney Roosters.

South Sydney Rabbitohs[edit]

Craig Wing was a South Sydney junior who played for Coogee Randwick Wombats playing through Harold Mathews, SG Ball and all the way to First grade where he made his debut against the Auckland Warriors at Mt Smart Stadium in round 1 of the 1998 NRL season. Craig Wing was a passionate Rabbitohs fan all throughout his childhood and making it in first grade with the Rabbitohs was a highlight in his life. In 1999 Craig played his final season at the Rabbitohs due to the Rabbitohs being kicked out of the NRL competition. This was a low point in Craigs life as he only wanted to play for the Rabbitohs. He stuck with the Rabbitohs even when the club was kicked out waiting for the court decision. When the decision was not in Souths favor Wing had no choice but to move on if he wished to play in the NRL. He was then signed by the Sydney City Roosters for the 2000 season.

Roosters[edit]

Wing has played most of his professional rugby league at the Sydney Roosters. He moved to the club in 2000 and originally started as a halfback partnering Brad Fittler. Wing played from the interchange bench in the Sydney Roosters' 2000 NRL Grand Final loss to the Brisbane Broncos. He played at halfback in the Roosters team which won the 2002 NRL Grand Final against the New Zealand Warriors, scoring a try.

Having won the 2002 NRL Premiership, the Roosters traveled to England to play the 2003 World Club Challenge against Super League champions, St Helens RLFC. Wing played at half back in Sydney's victory. Wing was later moved to hooker in 2003 when halfback Brett Finch joined the club.[1] After his side's loss in the 2003 NRL grand final, Wing was selected to go on the 2003 Kangaroo tour of Great Britain and France, helping Australia to victory over Great Britain in what would be the last time the two nations contested an Ashes series.

Wing played for the Roosters at hooker in their 2004 NRL grand final loss to cross-Sydney rivals, the Bulldogs. Wing was selected in the Australian team to go and compete in the end of season 2004 Rugby League Tri-Nations tournament. In the final against Great Britain he played from the interchange bench in the Kangaroos' 44-4 victory.

Wing played in four NRL Grand Finals, a feat achieved by very few players in the NRL, and all with the Roosters: 2000, 2002, 2003 and 2004.

Return to Souths[edit]

Wing announced in June 2007 that he would be leaving the Roosters at the end of the 2007 NRL season to take up a four-year contract with the South Sydney Rabbitohs, the club where he started his career.[2]

While the Roosters' offer was higher, Wing said he felt more comfortable accepting the Souths offer as it was a guaranteed four-year deal compared to the Roosters' 2-year deal with an option for a further 2 years[3]

Wing came under tremendous criticism for allowing himself to be paraded at a high profile Souths press conference while still contracted at the Sydney Roosters. It could be argued that the Roosters started the whole problem in the first place however, as they broke the news of Craig Wing's signing on their website before Souths had officially signed him, in an apparent attempt to steal Souths thunder.[4][5][6] In any case, Wing still apologised to the Sydney Roosters fans.[7] He was jeered on 23 June 2007, by the Roosters fans at a game against the Parramatta Eels, his first game after signing for Souths.[8]

In round 1 of the season, Wing was injured in a tackle in only the 8th minute of the game against his old club the Roosters. Wing was in the process of being tackled by Anthony Tupou and Braith Anasta, when Riley Brown shoulder charged Wing's back. Wing was sidelined for 12 weeks.[9] In a much awaited return, Wing helped Souths to only their fourth win of the season in his return from injury, beating bottom placed North Queensland Cowboys 29–28 in the greatest comeback in South's history, having been down 28–4 at one stage of the game.

Representative career[edit]

Wing has represented the New South Wales State of Origin team, City Origin and the Australian Kangaroos. Many of his appearances have been as a reserve due to the fact that he can cover a number of positions.

He was named in the Australia training squad for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup.[10] He was selected for City in the City vs Country match on 8 May 2009.[11]

In May 2009, he was named in the 17-man squad to represent New South Wales in the opening game of the 2009 State of Origin series on 3 June 2009, in Melbourne.[12]

Switch to Rugby union[edit]

Wing announced on 21 July 2009 that he would be leaving South Sydney to play rugby union in Japan for the NTT Shining Arcs.[13] Wing finsished his NRL career having played over 250 first grade games for both the Sydney Roosters and the South Sydney Rabbitohs. During his career he has won an NRL premiership, played for Australia in 19 Test matches and represented NSW on 13 occasions.

His switch to rugby union attracted interest from the Philippines national rugby union team and they approached him to play for them through his mother who is Filipino.[14] But in 2013 he was selected for the Japan instead after qualifying after 3 years residency and made his debut in May 2013 against the UAE. He scored his first try for Japan during their historic 23-8 win over Wales in June 2013.

References[edit]

  1. ^ ABC Sport – Rugby League – Hodges on the wing for Broncos
  2. ^ "Rabbitohs Sign Craig Wing for Four Years". Souths.com. 20 June 2007. Archived from the original on 27 September 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2007. 
  3. ^ "Craig Wing To Leave Roosters". SydneyRoosters.com. 20 June 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2007. 
  4. ^ "Craig Mason blasts Wing's publicity stunt". NRL.com. 21 June 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2007. 
  5. ^ "NRL Deluxe – It Was Poor Taste!". NRL.com. 22 June 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2007. 
  6. ^ "Roosters give Souths a signing lesson". NRL.com. 21 June 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2007. 
  7. ^ "Wing sorry over 'show pony' signing". NRL.com. 21 June 2007. Retrieved 22 June 2007. 
  8. ^ Wing jeered as Roosters thrashed – League – Fox Sports
  9. ^ Phelps, James; Ritchie, Dean (17 March 2008). "Wing sidelined for months". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 7 September 2009. 
  10. ^ "Veteran Lockyer named in Australian squad". International Herald Tribune. 1 August 2008. Retrieved 2 August 2008. 
  11. ^ Balym, Todd (3 May 2009). "Blues halfback duel in two as Mitchell Pearce misses selection". Fox Sports. Retrieved 3 May 2009. 
  12. ^ Fitzgibbon, Liam (25 May 2009). "NSW selectors go with form and not reputation for Origin opener". Fox Sports News (Australia). Retrieved 30 May 2009. 
  13. ^ "Craig Wing to play rugby in Japan". The Roar. 21 July 2009. Retrieved 21 July 2009. 
  14. ^ http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/nrl/craig-wing-approached-to-play-rugby-union-for-the-philippines-at-the-commonwealth-games/story-e6frexnr-1225783572640

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Anthony Field
Cleo Bachelor of the Year
2000
Succeeded by
David Whitehill