Craig Wing

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Craig Wing
Personal information
Born (1979-12-26) 26 December 1979 (age 34)
Sydney, 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
1998–99 South Sydney 43 12 0 0 48
2000–07 Sydney Roosters 185 66 1 0 264
2008–09 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
2001–09 City Origin 6 3 0 0 12
2003–09 New South Wales 12 2 0 0 8
2002–05 Australia 17 2 0 0 8
Rugby union
Position Centre/Fly-half
Club
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2010–12 NTT Shining Arcs 21 10 5 0 50
2012–13 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 4 July 2014
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 favour 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.

Sydney 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 travelled 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]

During Wing's rugby league career he played over 250 NRL first grade games combined for the Sydney Roosters and South Sydney Rabbitohs, winning an NRL premiership with the Roosters, represented NSW on 13 occasions, and played for Australia in 19 Test matches.

Japan 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 Communication Shining Arcs[13] and in 2010, he joined his former NSW School boys 1st XV coach Joe Barakat who was coaching with the team.[14]

In 2012, after two seasons with Shining Arcs, he moved to the Kobe Steel Kobelco Steelers, where he is listed as playing centre or stand-off.[15][16]

His switch to rugby union attracted interest from the Philippines national rugby union team who approached him to play for them, as he qualified through his mother who is Filipino.[17] Despite this interest, in 2013 he was instead selected for the Japan Cherry Blossoms, having qualified after 3 years residency. He made his debut for Japan in May 2013 in a match against the UAE. He scored his first try for Japan in June 2013, in a historic 23–8 win over Wales, playing at centre in a side coached by fellow Australian Eddie Jones.[18]

Early Rugby Union Career[edit]

Wing attended Sydney Boys high where he played Rugby Union. In 1997 Wing was selected to play in the NSW's School Boys 1st XV where the team remained undefeated until the final decider.[19]

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.nswschoolsrugby.rugbynet.com.au/verve/_resources/NSWSRU_I_XV_1971_-_2011.pdf
  15. ^ "選手プロフィール 神戸製鋼コベルコスティーラーズ" (in Japanese). Kobe Steel. August 18, 2014. Retrieved December 2, 2014. 
  16. ^ "クレイグ・ウィング" (in Japanese). JRFU. October 20, 2014. Retrieved December 2, 2014. 
  17. ^ http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/nrl/craig-wing-approached-to-play-rugby-union-for-the-philippines-at-the-commonwealth-games/story-e6frexnr-1225783572640
  18. ^ "BBC Sport - Japan record historic first win over Wales". BBC. 15 June 2013. Retrieved 2 December 2014. 
  19. ^ http://www.nswschoolsrugby.rugbynet.com.au/verve/_resources/NSWSRU_I_XV_1971_-_2011.pdf

External links[edit]

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