Mike Hercus

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Mike Hercus
Date of birth (1979-06-06) 6 June 1979 (age 35)
Place of birth Falls Church, Virginia
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight 12 st 13 lbs (82 kg)
School Sydney Church of England Grammar School
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Fly-half
Amateur clubs
Years Club / team
1992-1994 Belmont Shore
correct as of 1 Sept 2006.
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2003-2005 Sale Sharks 22 (125)
correct as of 24 Sept 2006.
Provincial/State sides
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2005-2006
2006-2007

2007-2008
2008-2009
2009

2010
Llanelli Scarlets
Newport Gwent Dragons
Belmont Shore
IBM Big Blue
Sunshine Coast Stingrays
Gordon RFC
23
13

9
13
?
(174)
(11)

(11)
(?)
(91)
correct as of 6 July 2009.
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
2002-2009  United States 48 (465)
correct as of 23 Sept 2011.

Mike Hercus (born June 6, 1979 in Falls Church, Virginia) is a retired American rugby union footballer who played at fly-half for the USA Eagles and several top level professional clubs around the globe.

Hercus is the USA Eagles' all-time leading scorer with 465 points, and is the leading scorer for the U.S. in Rugby World Cups with 77 points.[1] He is currently 20th all-time on the international scoring list,[citation needed] an accomplishment considering the limited international schedule the USA plays when compared to major rugby playing nations. At the time of his final match, Hercus was the Eagles' all-time most capped back.

Early life and career[edit]

Hercus was born in Virginia but his parents returned to their native Australia where he was brought up and educated at Shore School North Sydney. He started in their first XV for two years and was captained by Phil Waugh when they were in year 12. He played for the Australian schoolboys rugby union team and later progressed to the Australian under 21 side.

2003 - 2007[edit]

The American national team, the USA Eagles, gave him a route into international rugby union. Hercus made his debut for the U.S. national team in 2002. Hercus played in the 2003 Rugby World Cup, scoring 51 points for the Eagles.

Hercus played at Sale Sharks for two seasons as Charlie Hodgson's understudy before moving to Llanelli Scarlets. There Hercus was able to secure a starting position at fly-half during the season, a position which he maintained in the 2006 Powergen Cup final (which saw the Scarlets lose to London Wasps 26-10). Hercus moved to the Newport Gwent Dragons in the summer of 2006 when it was announced that Welsh international fly-half Stephen Jones was to move to the Scarlets.

Also in 2006, Hercus received an invitation to play for the prestigious Barbarians FC, joining an elite list of only seven USA Eagles who have done so. His Barbarians cap came in the annual clash vs. Leicester Tigers in which he scored 17 points, including a try.

2007 - 2010[edit]

Hercus captained the Eagles in their qualifying matches against Uruguay in 2006 for the 2007 Rugby World Cup. He returned to the USA for the start of the 2007 U.S. Rugby Super League season, where he played for Belmont Shore and was in the US Falcons NA4 squad. Hercus started all four matches for the U.S. in the 2007 Rugby World Cup.

Hercus signed a contract at the start of 2008 to play for Japanese club IBM Big Blue. In 2009, after just one season, Hercus signed with the Australian club Sunshine Coast Stingrays where, in limited action he was the club's leading scorer. Hercus played with the USA Eagles during the 2009 summer internationals, including the Eagles against Canada and Uruguay in the 2011 Rugby World Cup qualifying matches. These qualifying matches in 2009 were Hercus's last matches for the U.S. national team.

In 2010, Hercus returned to Australia and his junior club the Gordon Highlanders to compete in the Shute Shield. Hercus was named Gordon's captain to start the season, but saw limited action due to injury. By mid season, rumors began to leak out that he had retired or intended to retire from both international and club rugby due to persistent reoccurring injuries. Although no official announcement has ever been made, he has been presumed retired since summer 2010.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Rugby Mag, Record Breakers - World Cup Records and Who Could Break Them, 5 September 2011, http://www.rugbymag.com/2011-rugby-world-cup/1856-record-breakers-world-cup-records-and-who-could-break-them.html

External links[edit]