Craig Smith (rugby league, born 1971)

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Craig Smith
Craig Smith New Zealand Maori.jpg
Personal information
Born (1971-10-31) 31 October 1971 (age 46)
Kaitaia, New Zealand
Playing information
Height 187 cm (6 ft 1 12 in)
Weight 109 kg (17 st 2 lb)
Position Prop
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1995 South Sydney 7 1 0 0 4
1996–98 Illawarra Steelers 49 1 0 0 4
1999–01 St George Illawarra 52 1 0 0 4
2002–04 Wigan Warriors 94 11 0 0 44
2005–06 Newcastle Knights 45 2 0 0 8
Total 247 16 0 0 64
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1997 Queensland 3 0 0 0 0
1997 Rest of the World 1 0 0 0 0
1998–01 New Zealand 12 1 0 0 4
2008 New Zealand Māori 1 0 0 0 0
Source: [1]

Craig Smith (born 31 October 1971[2]) is a New Zealand former professional rugby league footballer who played in the 1990s, and 2000s. He formerly played for the South Sydney Rabbitohs, Illawarra Steelers, St. George Illawarra Dragons and the Newcastle Knights as well as representing New Zealand, New Zealand Māori and Queensland. Smith primarily played at prop.


Smith was born in Kaitaia, New Zealand[3] and originally was a rugby union player in Northland. Smith moved to Queensland for college and took up rugby league.[4]

Playing career[edit]

Club career[edit]

South Sydney Rabbitohs[edit]

Smith commenced his top level career with the South Sydney Rabbitohs in the 1995 ARL season.

Illawarra Steelers[edit]

He then moved to the Illawarra Steelers.

St. George Illawarra Dragons[edit]

Smith played at prop forward for the St. George Illawarra Dragons in their 1999 NRL Grand Final loss to the Melbourne Storm.

Wigan Warriors[edit]

Following a series of suspensions in 2001 for contrary conduct and striking, Smith left the NRL and Australia in 2002 to play for European Super League club, the Wigan Warriors.[5][6] With Wigan, he won the 2002 Challenge Cup Final. In 2003 he was named at prop forward in the season's Super League Dream Team. Smith played for the Wigan Warriors at prop forward in the 2003 Super League Grand Final, which was lost to the Bradford Bulls.

Newcastle Knights[edit]

In 2005, Smith agreed to a one-year deal and a return to the NRL with the Newcastle Knights.[7]

Although originally intending to retire at the end of the 2005 season, Smith was re-signed by Newcastle for the 2006 season.[8] A broken jaw in August 2006 sidelined him for several rounds but he was fit to return for Newcastle's finals appearances.[9] Smith played his last NRL game in Newcastle's semi-finals defeat by the Brisbane Broncos.[10]

Representative career[edit]


Smith was selected to represent Queensland as a prop for games I and II of the 1997 State of Origin series and on the bench for game III.

New Zealand[edit]

Smith was selected to go on the 1998 New Zealand tour of Great Britain and played for the Kiwis twelve times between 1998 and 2001.

Smith was selected for the New Zealand team to compete in the end of season 1999 Rugby League Tri-Nations tournament. In the final against Australia he played at prop forward in the Kiwis' 20-22 loss.

New Zealand Maori[edit]

Smith was again coaxed out of retirement to take part in the New Zealand Māori team that met the Indigenous Dreamtime team in a commemorative match at the 2008 Rugby League World Cup.[11]

Coaching career[edit]

Smith has been on the coaching staff for the under-20s side at Newcastle.[12]



  1. ^ RLP
  2. ^ Ritchie, Dean (6 April 2011). "Not being from Queensland no bar to Cane Toad State of Origin selection". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 6 April 2011. 
  3. ^ Ritchie, Dean (6 April 2011). "Not being from Queensland no bar to Cane Toad State of Origin selection". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 6 April 2011. 
  4. ^ Coffey and Wood The Kiwis: 100 Years of International Rugby League ISBN 1-86971-090-8
  5. ^ "Dragons to deal directly with judiciary commissioner" (fee required). AAP Sports News (Australia). 26 April 2001. Retrieved 27 January 2008. 
  6. ^ "Wigan confirm Smith signing" (fee required). AAP Sports News (Australia). 17 August 2001. Retrieved 2008-01-27. 
  7. ^ "Smith agrees to one-year deal with Newcastle" (fee required). AAP Sports News (Australia). 15 March 2005. Retrieved 8 August 2009. 
  8. ^ "Knights re-sign Smith and Salkeld" (fee required). AAP Sports News (Australia). 4 August 2005. Retrieved 8 August 2009. 
  9. ^ "Smith spray as Paea escapes charge". The Sydney Morning Herald. 8 August 2006. Retrieved 8 August 2009. 
  10. ^ "Brisbane Broncos 50 def. Newcastle Knights 6". The Rugby League Project. Retrieved 8 August 2009. 
  11. ^ "Smith coaxed out of retirement" (fee required). AAP Sports News (Australia). 24 October 2008. Retrieved 8 August 2009. 
  12. ^ "Former Knight Craig Smith ready to pull on boots at 43". Herald. 30 June 2015. Retrieved 19 April 2017. 

External links[edit]