|Full name||Brett John Finch|
20 August 1981|
Maitland, New South Wales, Australia
|Height||183 cm (6 ft 0 in)|
|Weight||89 kg (14 st 0 lb) |
Brett John Finch (born 20 August 1981 in Maitland, New South Wales) is an Australian former professional rugby league footballer of the 2000s and 2010s. A New South Wales State of Origin representative half back, he played in the National Rugby League for Australian clubs the Canberra Raiders, Sydney Roosters, Parramatta Eels and Melbourne Storm. Finch also played in the Super League for English club Wigan Warriors (with whom he won the 2010 World Club Challenge and 2011 Challenge Cup Final).
At the Canberra Raiders Finch won the club's Rookie of the Year award in 1999. He debuted earlier in that year against the Melbourne Storm in round 14 as a 17-year-old.
Finch joined the Sydney Roosters in 2003. As 2002 NRL premiers, the Roosters travelled to England for the 2003 World Club Challenge against Super League champions, St Helens R.F.C.. Finch played from the interchange bench in Sydney's victory. In 2004, whilst playing for the Sydney Roosters, Finch threw a bottle back into the crowd after he was pelted by a Canterbury Bulldogs fan. Finch played for the Roosters at scrum half back in their 2004 NRL grand final loss to cross-Sydney rivals, the Bulldogs.
Finch played three State of Origin games for New South Wales after crossing from Canberra. His most famous moment was when he was called into the New South Wales squad on the eve of Game 1 of the 2006 State of Origin series. He then turned out to be a hero by scoring a try, setting up two and by kicking the winning field goal to push New South Wales to a famous 17–16 victory at Telstra Stadium. However Finch had a disastrous Game II, and was dropped for the decider which New South Wales lost. They also lost the 2006 series for the first time since 2001.
The Roosters and Finch agreed on an early termination of his contract, allowing the Parramatta Eels to sign Finch on a two-year deal from the Roosters, commencing from the 2007 season. The Eels then extended his contract to the end of the 2011 season, reportedly to be worth $1 million for 3 years.
On 8 April 2009, Parramatta CEO, Denis Fitzgerald, confirmed that Finch would be released from his contract with the Eels. The contract was not due to expire until the end of the 2011 season. Finch is quoted in media sources as stating that coach Daniel Anderson told him he "may not be the right person to take the club forward in the halfback position".
On 14 April 2009, Finch signed a one-year contract with the Melbourne Storm, his fourth club in eleven NRL seasons. Storm coach Craig Bellamy commented: "He will add depth and experience to our squad and gives us further options in the halves."
He got his revenge beating his old team, Parramatta, in the 2009 grand final, setting up 2 tries. However, the NRL later discovered significant salary cap breaches and stripped the Storm of this win. This made it third time unlucky for Finch, having lost two Grand Finals with the Roosters (2003 and 2004.
In July 2010, Finch signed with then Super League champions, Wigan Warriors. The deal began with the 2011 season and runs through the 2012 season. Finch did not make his début for Wigan until 25 March 2011 in the home defeat by Warrington Wolves in round 7 of the super league, where Finch scored Wigan's only try. Finch missed the start of the season due to a thigh injury which saw him miss 6 games for the Warriors, including 5 Super League games and the 2011 World Club Challenge defeat by St George Illawarra Dragons.
Finch played for Wigan in the 2011 Challenge Cup Final at scrum half back, helping defeat Leeds 28-18.
After retiring at the end of 2013, Finch, between 2014 and 2016 worked as a Sideline Commentator on Channel Nine's NRL Coverage as well as semi-regular appearances as a panellist on The NRL Footy Show, However Finch departed Channel 9 at the end of 2016, citing mental health issues.
- "Wigan Warriiors Player Profile Brett Finch". web page. wiganwarriors.com. Archived from the original on 14 March 2011. Retrieved 16 August 2011.
- "SportingPulse Homepage for Australian Secondary Schools Rugby League". SportingPulse. Retrieved 2008-10-10.
- Hunter Mariners 1908.com
- "Don't do your bottle: NRL cautions Roosters star". The Sydney Morning Herald. 1 April 2004.
- "Finch walks out on Eels". Fox Sports News (Australia). 8 April 2009. Retrieved 8 April 2009.
- "Brett Finch signs short-term deal with Melbourne Storm". The Australian. 14 April 2009. Retrieved 14 April 2009.
- "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 3 October 2009. Retrieved 1 March 2010.
- "Finch hopes for world club challenge start". Nrl.com.au. Retrieved 4 December 2013.