Mark Geyer

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Mark Geyer OAM
Personal information
Nickname MG
Born (1967-12-07) 7 December 1967 (age 46)
Playing information
Height 195 cm (6 ft 5 in)
Weight 114 kg (17 st 13 lb)
Position Second-row
Club
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1987–1992 Penrith Panthers 92 7 0 0 28
1993 Balmain Tigers 13 2 0 0 8
1995–1997 Western Reds 32 2 0 0 8
1998–2000 Penrith Panthers 43 2 0 0 8
Total 180 13 0 0 52
Representative
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1989–1991 New South Wales 3 0 0 0 0
1990–1991 Australia 3 1 0 0 4
Source: NRL Stats, RLP

Mark Geyer (born 7 December 1967), is an Australian former professional rugby league footballer of the 1980s and '90s. An Australian international and New South Wales State of Origin representative second-rower, he is currently a rugby league media identity. In the 1990s, he was one of the code's more controversial players in Australia due to his ability to generate headlines regarding both his on- and off-field activities and publicised comments, which gained him at least as much attention as much as for his undubitable playing talent. Geyer's club career was played primarily with Penrith, with whom he won a premiership in 1991, as well as the Balmain Tigers and the Western Reds. He is also the brother of fellow footballer Matt Geyer.

Since August 2009, Geyer has been part of the Triple M on-air team for the Sydney breakfast show called The Grill Team. Since 2012, Geyer has been a panelist on NRL on FOX for Fox Sports.

Playing career[edit]

In 1987, Geyer established a regular first-grade place with the Penrith Panthers and was selected for the City Seconds team after only a handful of top grade appearances. He also played in Penrith's 1987 Reserve Grade Grand Final winning team that defeated the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles at the Sydney Cricket Ground.

In 1988, Mark Geyer was selected in the President's XIII against the touring Great Britain Lions at the Seiffert Oval near Canberra.

Geyer's reputation for controversy began that winter when he served a six-match suspension for the first five matches of 1989 with English club Sheffield Eagles, thus giving Penrith his services for four more games than they would otherwise not have had. Geyer gained a place in the New South Wales team for that year's State of Origin series . His 1990 season was largely lost to a succession of injuries, but he came back to play in Penrith's grand final loss to Canberra and be selected for the 1990 Kangaroo tour, during which Geyer played his first Test.

During the 1991 season, Geyer received a five-match suspension for an incident in the second State of Origin game, which preceded an infamous confrontation with Queensland captain Wally Lewis, and had to battle continuing injuries. In August, he was thought to be out for the rest of the season after injuring his ankle ligaments in a training session, only to return for the major semifinal.[1] However, despite his problems during the season, Geyer helped his team win the grand final in a re-match against Canberra that year. He set up all three Penrith tries scored during the match and was only denied the Clive Churchill Medal by having been sin-binned earlier in the second half.

Following his breakthrough season, Geyer continued to attract controversy during his playing career. After missing the Australian tour of Papua New Guinea due to injury, he failed to play in Penrith's World Club Challenge match against Wigan due to passport problems. In 1992, a sensation occurred when he tested positive to marijuana in a random drug test and he was suspended for ten matches. Penrith then cancelled his contract and in 1993 he signed with Balmain, but was released from the team when he failed to attend training in January the following year. Geyer was rumoured to possibly play for South Sydney but, against the wishes of his manager, he spent a season with amateur club Umina on the Central Coast of NSW.

After moving to Perth in 1995 to link up with the newly formed Western Reds, Geyer showed good form despite a four-match suspension. The following two years, however, were decimated by suspensions totalling sixteen games and several injuries. Despite achieving the club's captaincy and some positive form late in 1996, News Corporation closed the door on the Reds a year later. Geyer spent the last four years of his career back at Penrith but concerns over his fitness limited his role (and playing time) to starting from the interchange bench.

In 2000, Mark Geyer was awarded the Australian Sports Medal for his contribution to Australia's international standing in rugby league.

Post-playing career[edit]

Since his retirement, Geyer has written extensively about rugby league for various newspapers and sporting magazines.

In May 2010 he spoke out about his mid career drug and alcohol battle that lasted from 1992 - 1995 [2] and how it almost ended his career. He said a large part of the drug usage was to simply trying to numb the pain of losing his best mate, Former Penrith player Ben Alexander, who was killed in a car accident in 1992.

Geyer was a regular panellist on rugby league talk show The Sunday Roast where he referred himself as 'the man of the people'. He also is on Triple M in Sydney, as a breakfast presenter on The Grill Team Monday-to-Friday 6-9am with Matthew Johns and Gus Worland since August 2009. He also appears on Triple M on Saturday mornings, presenting the 'Dead Set Legends' segment alongside Ray Warren.

In 2012, it was announced that Geyer joined Fox Sports (Australia) as part of their Rugby League coverage. He is a Panelist on NRL on FOX

Geyer is actively involved in a number of charities, such as the Fight For Life charity boxing event,[3] he is the ambassador for the Save Our Sons charity.

In response to the 2010–2011 Queensland floods, Geyer organised the 2011 Legends of Origin charity match which raised $455,345 for the recovery effort.

On Australia Day 2013, Mark was announced in the Honours List. He received an Order Of Australia medal for "service to the sport of Rugby League football, and to the community through a range of charitable organisations."

Personal life[edit]

Geyer's younger brother Matt Geyer also played rugby league, initially with Mark at the Western Reds in 1997, before playing with the Melbourne Storm from 1998–2008.

Geyer is married to the sister of former fellow Penrith players Greg Alexander and the late Ben Alexander. Mark and his wife have five children: Logan, Montanna, Kennedi, Mavrik and Rafferti.

References[edit]

Sources[edit]

  • Whiticker, Alan and Hudson, Glen; The Encyclopaedia of Rugby League Players (3rd edition); published 1998 by Gary Allen Pty. Ltd.; 9 Cooper Street, Smithfield, New South Wales, 2164.

External links[edit]