Kurtley Beale

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Kurtley Beale
Kurtley Beale cropped.jpg
Kurtley Beale playing for the New South Wales Waratahs
Full name Kurtley James Beale
Date of birth (1989-01-06) 6 January 1989 (age 25)
Place of birth Blacktown, New South Wales, Australia
Height 184 cm (6 ft 0 in)
Weight 90 kg (14 st 2 lb)
School St Joseph's College
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Inside Centre / Fly-Half / Fullback / Wing
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2007
2014-
Western Sydney Rams
Greater Sydney Rams
8
0
(28)
(0)
Super Rugby
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2007–11
2012–13
2014–
Waratahs
Rebels
Waratahs
68
14
18
(351)
(66)
(64)
Current local club Randwick[1]
correct as of 3 August 2014.
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2009 –
2009
2007
2004–06
Australia
Australia U-20
Australia A
Australia Schoolboys
47 (113)
correct as of 28 September 2014.

Kurtley Beale (born 6 January 1989) is an Australian representative rugby union player of Aboriginal descent.[2] He usually plays at fly-half or fullback.

Career[edit]

Youth[edit]

Beale signed with the Waratahs while still only a 16-year-old at St Joseph's College, Hunters Hill.[3][4][5] He represented NSW and Australian schoolboys between 2004 and 2006.[6] In 2006 Beale captained both the Joey's first fifteen and the Australian Schoolboys[6] and regularly attended training sessions with the NSW Waratahs from the age of 15. At 17, he attended his first Wallabies training camp, on the invitation of coach John Connolly.

Senior[edit]

Northern Suburbs Beale's original senior club was the Northern Suburbs club where he would play alongside then-Waratahs teammates Al Baxter and Sam Norton-Knight.

Western Sydney Rams

Beale initiated the inaugural season of the Australian Rugby Championship by starting five-eighth for the Rams in every game. Beale was one of the season's leading try scorers and try-assists in the competition. The Rams went on to become minor premiers in 2007 thanks to the contribution of Beale and others including Tatafu Polota-Nau, Chris Siale and Lachlan Turner. Beale was awarded player of the tournament (2007) in the ARC.[7]

Randwick

In June 2013, Beale was named to play for Randwick while on leave from the Melbourne Rebels following a spell in rehabiltation for alcohol related issues. He had previoulsy played for Randwick against Gordon in 2010.[8]

Super Rugby[edit]

New South Wales Waratahs

Beale made his Senior NSW debut against ACT in January 2007 in a trial game in Wollongong. He scored the first of his many memorable tries by chipping around the winger and outpacing the fullback to score after coming on from the bench. The game was won by NSW 12–0. Two weeks later, after again coming off the bench, Beale made a late break to assist in the winning try against the Crusaders. Coach Ewen McKenzie had stated that Beale would not be rushed into the starting line up and would instead play second fiddle in his debut year behind Daniel Halangahu. However, it was no more than two weeks later that he made his starting debut against the Sharks at ABSA stadium, South Africa, only to lose 22–9. The following week in only his second start as fly-half, Beale scored one of the most memorable tries of the season by chipping over the first line of defence and stealing the ball out of the fullback's hands to score his first five-pointer in Super 14.[citation needed]

Beale became the Waratahs first choice fly-half for the start of the 2008 Super 14 season. He also assumed the goal-kicking duties from Peter Hewat ahead of Lachlan Turner, but Beale's goal kicking was not seen as one of the team's strong points.[9] His defence also became the subject of criticism after the Round 2 loss to the Chiefs as NSW were forced to shift him to blindside wing in defence in order to shore up the midfield.[10]

Beale moved to fullback for the 2010 season.[citation needed] In 2011, he received the John Eales Medal, awarded by the Australian Rugby Union and the Rugby Union Players' Association to their Player of the Year.[citation needed]

Melbourne Rebels

In April 2011, Beale signed a two-year deal starting in 2012 to play for the Melbourne Rebels.[11][12] His Rebel team mates would include 2011 Wallabies James O'Connor[13] and Nick Phipps.

In May 2012 Beale switched from fullback (15) to fly-half (10) for the clash against the Bulls.[14][15] The change followed the departure of Rebels fly-half Danny Cipriani to England.[16][17] With Beale's help, the Rebels put in one of their best performances to date.[18]

The next week the Rebels triumphed over the highly ranked Crusaders, with Beale converting two tries (from 3 attempts) and kicking three penalties.[19] Rod Macqueen, former Rebels coach, said that Beale at number 10 brought something special to the Rebels and that he, and similarly O'Connor at inside centre, impacted the shapes the team created on the field.[20]

With Beale again at 10, the Rebels narrowly beat the Force a week later in Perth.[17]

In 2013, whilst on a tour of South Africa, Beale was sent home along with Cooper Vuna for punching captain Gareth Delve on a team bus after a match.[21] A post to social media by Vuna was subsequently republished on at lease one other blog.[22]

Beale agreed to seek counselling for his alcohol related issues.[23] He rejoined the squad[24][25] and played off the bench against the Chiefs[26][27] but was again suspended before the Rebels were to play the Blues in Auckland, New Zealand.[8][28] In July 2013, the Rebels dropped Beale from the squad.[29]

Return to the New South Wales Waratahs

After two seasons with the Melbourne Rebels, in August 2013, Beale signed with the Waratahs and ARU until the end of 2014.[30]

Beale featured in every game for the Waratahs at Inside Centre and produce a number of great performances during the season. With the backline combination of Israel Folau at Fullback, Adam Ashley-Cooper at Outside Centre and Bernard Foley at Fly-Half; they had all help guided the Waratahs to a Super Rugby Title win.

Following the French Series, he continued-on with his great performance each week with the Waratahs.

In the Grand Final clash with the Crusaders at ANZ Stadium playing at Inside Centre, he set-up the 2 tries to Adam Ashley-Cooper and guided the Waratahs to a win 33-32 over the 7-time champions.

Australia[edit]

Beale made his Australia A debut in the 2007 Pacific Nations Cup. He scored his first try in a 27–15 defeat of Samoa. Soon after, Beale narrowly missed out on selection for the 2007 Rugby World Cup, the selectors opting for Queensland Reds fly-half Berrick Barnes. Wallabies coach John Connolly selected Barnes over Beale due to his ability to adapt to the national team's conservative game plan and their narrow attack patterns.[citation needed]

Beale's Australian Test debut was made at the end of the 2009 Tour of the Home Nations when he appeared on the wing as a substitute in the 34–12 Wallabies victory over Wales. He made a number of mid-week match appearances on the Tour at fly-half.[citation needed]

2010 was a groundbreaking year for Beale in terms of his international career. He started the test season scoring two tries against Fiji and finished the year with a respectable record of seven tries from 12 tests.[31]

2011 saw a further rise in form and recognition with Beale being nominated for the IRB International Player of the Year Award. He even received the John Eales Medal, awarded by the Australian Rugby Union and the Rugby Union Players' Association to their Player of the Year.[citation needed]

He was named as part of the Australia squad for the 2011 Rugby World Cup, and was favoured as the starting fullback whenever he was fit to play. However, he missed the Wallabies semi-final against the All Blacks due to a hamstring injury suffered in the previous game against South Africa.[citation needed]

In 2012, he played full-back for the third Test against Wales and three games of the 2012 Rugby Championship against the All Blacks (at ANZ Stadium, Sydney and Eden Park, Auckland) and Springboks (at Patersons Stadium, Perth). After his poor performances at Fullback, the following week he was benched for the game against Argentina at Skilled Park, Gold Coast.

Following a knee injury to Quade Cooper, coach Robbie Deans shifted him from fullback to fly-half. He played fly-half in the Wallabies loss to the Springboks in Pretoria. The following week, he was selected again at fly-half against Argentina at Estadio Gigante de Arroyito in Rosario, setting up a try for Digby Ioane. He played fly-half in the 18-all draw against the All Blacks in the third Bledisloe Cup Test at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium; kicking two penalty goals successfully.[citation needed]

He played fly-half for the Wallabies in all of the games on their 2012 Europe Spring Tour.[citation needed] In the final game of the Spring Tour against Wales held at Cardiff's Millennium Stadium and Nathan Sharpe's last Test game for the Wallabies, Beale kicked three penalty goals and scored the match-winning try.[32]

In 2013, following a time in rehabilitation with personal and alcohol related issues, Beale was selected to play for Australia against the British and Irish Lions.[8] Shortly before full-time in the first Test, Beale slipped (and missed) while attempting to kick a penalty that would have won the game for the Wallabies. The Lions won 23–21.[33] He went on featuring at Fullback in the final 2 Tests of the Lions Series and the Wallabies end up losing the series. Following the series, he was ruled out of the year after being told by new Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie (who had replaced Robbie Deans following the Lions Series loss), to have shoulder surgery to fix-up his shoulder injury he had suffered on the Wallabies 2012 Europe Spring-Tour.

In 2014, Beale also featured in all 3 Test games against France coming off the bench for the Wallabies. He scored a try in the 2nd half of the 1st game of the French Series in Brisbane and set-up a try to team-mate Michael Hooper in the 3rd Test. Beale's superb season with the Waratahs earned him the Wallabies starting No. 10 role (ahead of Bernard Foley) against New Zealand in the first 2 Bledisloe Cup and Rugby Championship Tests.

Kurtley Beale–Di Patston controversy[edit]

On 29 September, it was announced that Kurtley Beale would be investigated by the ARU over an alleged heated argument between Beale and a Wallabies team official, Di Patston, on a 10-hour flight from Johannesburg to Sao Paulo. The incident, led to Patston leaving the tour all together on Tuesday 30 September, with McKenzie missing the teams first training session in Argentina to escort Patston to the airport on Tuesday afternoon.[34]

Initially, it was reported the argument was caused by an un-paid hotel bill that Patston informed Beale of while he was on the bench against South Africa on 27 September, claimed Kurtley Beale.[35] However, it was later announced that Patston requested Beale to change into his Wallabies polo-shirt while on the flight, which escalated into the heated argument.[36] It was understood that McKenzie was sitting next to Patston on the flight, and that it was a request from the head coach that Beale change his T-shirt for another piece of team gear which sparked the encounter. McKenzie had made the same request to second-rower Sam Carter, and it is understood that both players complied. But, Beale made a sarcastic comment as he returned to his seat, leading to Patston questioning Beale on the comment and McKenzie trying to intervene with the argument. Despite the incident, McKenzie kept Beale in the squad in Argentina, but did not name him in the match-day 23 for the match against Argentina.

On returning to Australia, evidence from the ARU integrity unit inquiry, revealed Beale was involved in an earlier incident before the first Test against France in Brisbane in June, in which he allegedly distributed photos and text messages referring to Patston. ARU chief executive Bill Pulver called a code of conduct tribunal into the incident, with the verdict of Beale being suspended. That meant that he was not in contention for selection for the 18 October All Blacks game.[37] It is understood the delay between Beale’s texts in June and the ARU’s discovery is due to the fact Patston attached a condition to her pledge to keep them secret and give him a second chance. According to the same report, it was reported that, "in the presence of three other Wallabies, Patston spoke to Beale in a Brisbane hotel before the first Test against France and told him she would reveal the contents of the texts if another incident arose".[38] According to Beale's manager, McKenzie knew about these text back in June, and failed to do anything about it, and continued to play Beale during the Test series - even starting Beale at Fly Half in the opening two rounds of the Rugby Championship. McKenzie denied this in a press conference, saying that he was only made aware of the incident when Patston told him in Argentina.[39]

On 10 October when McKenzie announced his 32-man squad for the Bledisloe Cup match, it took over 30 minutes for the press to ask McKenzie anything on the squad, while McKenzie came under fire. He was questioned about having an intimate relationship with team business manager Di Patston, adamant his position in charge of the Australian side has not been compromised.[40] According to reports, players in the team had become uneasy on how much influence Patston had on the team, and how much power McKenzie had given her, while some players believed she didn't have the qualifications for the roles she has in the team. Though McKenzie defended her, leading to the questioning on their relationship. That same day, Patston resigned from the team.[41] As the fall-out continued, speculation mounted that McKenzie had lost the faith and trust of his players following the discovery that Patston had input into the disciplinary measures that occurred during the 2013 Spring Tour.[42]

On 13 October, the texts between Beale and Patston were revealed, with Patston confirming that McKenzie did not know about the text in June.[43] Michael Hooper came out and backed Beale to remain with Australia and Rugby Union, while Christian Lealiifano and Quade Cooper joined McKenzie in backing Di Patston.[44][45]

In the week leading up to the All Blacks match, the press went quiet on the incident, while Beale's disciplinary verdict was still being decided.

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Kurtley Beale". Waratahs. NSW Rugby. 2010. Retrieved 29 June 2010. 
  2. ^ "Indigenous Wallabies make their mark". ABC News. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 6 June 2010. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  3. ^ Hooper, James (13 January 2008). "Beale owes it to his Pop". Daily Telegraph. Sydney: News Limited. 
  4. ^ Harris, Bret (16 July 2011). "Kurtley Beale, the kid from Mt Druitt, ready to take on the world". Australian. News Limited. Retrieved 16 July 2011. 
  5. ^ ARU (13 July 2011). "Mt Druitt welcomes home Wallabies star, Kurtley Beale" (Press release). Australian Rugby Union. Retrieved 16 July 2011. 
  6. ^ a b ARU (15 November 2012). "Lions match-up: Kurtley Beale v Toby Flood" (Press release). Australian Rugby Union. Retrieved 15 November 2012. 
  7. ^ "Beale wins ARC Player of the Tournament". Wallabies. ARU. 11 October 2007. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  8. ^ a b c Pandaram, Jamie (27 May 2013). "Troubled Melbourne Rebels star Kurtley Beale to turn out for club side Randwick as he starts bid for Wallaby selection". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 30 May 2013. 
  9. ^ Smith, Wayne (25 February 2008). "Don't believe the Beale hype". Fox Sports. News. Retrieved 16 May 2012. 
  10. ^ "Tahs forced on defensive by Beale". Fox Sports. News. 1 March 2008. 
  11. ^ Rebels Media Unit (14 April 2011). "Beale to join Rebels" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 26 April 2011. 
  12. ^ Growden, Greg (13 February 2012). "NSW need an excitement machine to satisfy faithful". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 26 February 2013. 
  13. ^ Payten, Iain (14 July 2011). "Joining forces for Melbourne Rebels a buzz for young Wallabies Kurtley Beale and James O'Connor". Herald Sun. News. Retrieved 16 July 2011. 
  14. ^ Growden, Greg (23 April 2012). "Rebels weigh up shifting Beale to five-eighth and benching Cipriani". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 26 April 2012. 
  15. ^ "Beale relishing fly half role". Grandstand Sport. Australian Broadcasting Corporation. 8 May 2012. Retrieved 19 June 2013. 
  16. ^ Rebels Media Unit (30 April 2012). "Cipriani to return home to pursue England dream" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 11 May 2012. 
  17. ^ a b Reuters (20 May 2012). "Rebels win tight game against Force". SA Rugby. SARU. Retrieved 21 May 2012. 
  18. ^ Stevenson, Andrew (4 May 2012). "Brave Rebels fall short in thriller" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 11 May 2012. 
  19. ^ Reuters (12 May 2012). "Rebels upset Crusaders in Melbourne". SA Rugby. SARU. Retrieved 21 May 2012. 
  20. ^ Paxinos, Stathi (16 May 2012). "Post-Cipriani Rebels the Beale thing". Age. Fairfax. Retrieved 16 May 2012. 
  21. ^ Rebels Media Unit (24 March 2013). "Kurtley Beale and Cooper Vuna stood down" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  22. ^ "Vuna v. Beale". Green and Gold Rugby blog. 24 March 2013. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  23. ^ Rebels Media Unit (28 March 2013). "Beale to seek external counselling assistance effective immediately" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  24. ^ Rebels Media Unit (1 May 2013). "Beale set to return to Rebels fold" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  25. ^ Rebels Media Unit (29 April 2013). "Beale re-joins Rebels squad today" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  26. ^ "Chiefs too strong for Rebels" (Press release). New Zealand: Chiefs. 3 May 2013. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  27. ^ "Rebels vs Chiefs". SA Rugby. 3 May 2013. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  28. ^ Rebels Media Unit (9 May 2013). "Statement regarding Kurtley Beale" (Press release). Melbourne Rebels. Retrieved 17 May 2013. 
  29. ^ Windley, Matt (13 July 2013). "Melbourne Rebels confirm they are splitting with Kurtley Beale". Herald Sun. News. Retrieved 13 July 2013. 
  30. ^ Robinson, Georgina (22 August 2013). "Beale resigns with Australian Rugby". Sydney Morning Herald. Fairfax. Retrieved 26 September 2013. 
  31. ^ Player profiles Wallabies
  32. ^ "Wales 12-14 Australia". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 1 December 2012. Retrieved 29 June 2013. 
  33. ^ "Lions 2013: Australia 21-23 British and Irish Lions". BBC News. British Broadcasting Corporation. 22 June 2013. Retrieved 29 June 2013. 
  34. ^ Kurtley Beale involved in mid-air incident
  35. ^ Kurtley Beale claims Di Patston confronted him during a Test about an unpaid hotel bill
  36. ^ How a T-shirt sparked drama for Kurtley Beale and the Wallabies
  37. ^ Kurtley Beale suspended by ARU over "offensive" texts allegation
  38. ^ Kurtley Beale’s exchange with Di Patston — Wallabies star pleaded for forgiveness over crude text messages
  39. ^ McKenzie knew of Beale text four months ago
  40. ^ Wallabies coach Ewen McKenzie slams rumours of Di Patston affair as Kurtley Beale fallout continues
  41. ^ Di Patston, Wallabies staffer who clashed with Kurtley Beale, has quit
  42. ^ Australia ban six players for drinking before Ireland game
  43. ^ Kurtley Beale's texts to Di Patston revealed
  44. ^ Captain courageous Michael Hooper stands by Kurtley Beale
  45. ^ Wallabies Quade Cooper, Christian Leali’ifano join Ewen McKenzie in backing Di Patston

External links[edit]