|Full name||David Furner|
6 February 1971 |
Queanbeyan, New South Wales
|Height||180 cm (5 ft 11 in)|
|Weight||97 kg (214 lb)|
|1996–00||New South Wales||8||1||0||0||4|
|Source: NRL Stats, RLP|
David Furner (born 6 February 1971 in Queanbeyan, New South Wales) is an Australian former professional rugby league football coach and player. He is the former head coach of the Canberra Raiders of the NRL and he spent his whole Australian playing career with the Raiders as well, leaving the club as the greatest point-scoring forward in NRL history before enjoying a successful career in England.
Furner attended St. Edmund's College, Canberra. Before embarking on a successful career in rugby league, Furner was a Queanbeyan Whites rugby union junior and a member of the Australian under-17 and under-21 rugby union team.
Furner was part of the 1994 Canberra Raiders premiership team, winning the Clive Churchill Medal for Man of the Match. Furner's strong performance led to his selection for the 1994 Kangaroo tour squad. Furner's father, Don, chairman of selectors, abstained from voting.
When Furner left Canberra at the end of the 2000 season, he had surpassed Bernie Purcell's record as the highest point-scoring forward in the game with 1218 points. Also in 2000 he was awarded the Australian Sports Medal for his contribution to Australia's international standing in rugby league.
After leaving Canberra, Furner moved to England's Super League where he played for the Wigan Warriors with them he won the Challenge Cup. Furner played for the Wigan Warriors at second-row forward and kicked a goal in their 2001 Super League Grand Final loss to the Bradford Bulls.
On his return to Australia from England, Furner took on a role as assistant-coach at the Canberra Raiders in 2006. In 2008, following Neil Henry's appointment as coach for the North Queensland Cowboys, Furner was named as Canberra's coach for 2009. A year earlier his brother, Don Furner, Jr., was appointed CEO of the Raiders.
Furners first season with Canberra did not start well with the team only winning 4 games during the first half of the season. He was criticised by fans for changing the dynamic attacking style that was present under his predecessor in 2008. The team performed slightly better during the second half of the season, but still only managed to win a further 5 games, finishing well outside the 8 in 13th spot.
2010 started off equally as badly with the raiders winning only 4 matches during the first 12 rounds. This continued to deteriorate with the team only winning 6 matches from the first 17 rounds. However a gutsy performance against Manly in Sydney proved to be the catalyst for a run of form that resulted in the Raiders playing the best football they have played since 2003, including the first finals win in approximately 10 years. Unfortunately the fairytale was not to be with the team succumbing to the Wests Tigers in a hard fought match in front of a sold out Bruce stadium.
The 2011 NRL season began with many experts predicting the Raiders to finish in the top 4 and be real premiership contenders. Unfortunately though the team got off to almost the worst possible start, winning only 1 of its first 9 games with Furner claiming the dubious honour of coaching the team to the most consecutive losses in its history, with 8 straight defeats between round 2 and round 9 of that year. He found his position at the club under intense criticism from fans however his security was guaranteed by the club publicly. The season ended only marginally better than it started with the club ultimately only winning 6 games and finishing in second last place which was the worst result for the club since winning only 4 matches in its debut season in 1982.
Furner was fired from his position three rounds before the conclusion of the 2013 season. A string of poor performances coupled with his losing the trust of several senior players saw his position become untenable.
- Alan Whiticker & Glen Hudson (2007). The Encyclopedia of Rugby League Players. Wetherill Park, New South Wales: Gary Allen Pty Ltd. pp. page 176. ISBN 978-1-877082-93-1.
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (August 2011)|
- David Furner stats at rugbyleagueproject.com
- David Furner at yesterdayshero.com.au
- Profile at leedsrugby
Andrew Dunemann (interim) 2013