David Williams (rugby league, born 1986)

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David "Wolfman"[1] Williams
David Williams Manly.jpg
Williams in 2015
Personal information
Full nameDavid Williams
Born (1986-08-04) 4 August 1986 (age 36)
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
Height183 cm (6 ft 0 in)
Weight92 kg (14 st 7 lb)
Playing information
PositionWing, Fullback
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2008–15 Manly Sea Eagles 103 66 4 0 272
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2009 City NSW 1 1 0 0 4
2009 New South Wales 2 2 0 0 8
2008 Australia 2 4 0 0 16
Source: [2][3][4]

David Williams (born 4 August 1986) is an Australian former professional rugby league footballer who played on the wing in the 2000s and 2010s. A New South Wales State of Origin and Australia international representative,[5] he played his entire professional career with the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles in the NRL, winning the 2008 NRL Premiership with them.


He is the younger brother of former Parramatta Eels, Sydney Roosters, North Queensland Cowboys and Cronulla-Sutherland Sharks winger, John Williams.[6]

Professional playing career[edit]


Williams was a Parramatta junior, playing for the Hills District Bulls based at Baulkham Hills, North-West Sydney.

Williams playing for Manly

In 2008, Williams developed a cult following and became known as the "Wolfman" for his shaggy locks and full beard. Williams scored a try in the 2008 NRL Grand Final victory over Melbourne Storm.[7] Following the Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles Grand Final victory, he had his beard removed by Manly teammates as he slept.[8]

In October 2008, Williams was named in the Australia squad for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup.[9][10] He made his test debut against Papua New Guinea at Dairy Farmers Stadium, scoring 3 tries, becoming one of few players to score a hat-trick on debut in the green and gold, and making a long break which led to another. Due to a hip flexor injury to teammate Brent Tate, Williams was chosen to play in the World Cup Final against New Zealand on 22 November 2008.

He played on the wing in Manly's 28–20 win over the Leeds Rhinos at Elland Road in the 2009 World Club Challenge match on 1 March. Williams along with some Manly teammates dyed his beard pink for the Women of League Round to raise money for charity, in their match against the Penrith Panthers in round 13 2009.

He was selected for City in the City vs Country match on 8 May 2009.[11]

He made his New South Wales debut on the wing in State of Origin 2 played on 24 June 2009. Unfortunately for Williams and his NSW teammates, Queensland won the game 24–14, and the series. Williams scored a try in each of the two games he played.


In round 25 of the 2011 NRL season, Williams broke his neck against Melbourne and was ruled out for the rest of season, missing out on Manly's 24–10 win over the New Zealand Warriors in the 2011 NRL Grand Final. He was given 3 to 4 months to recover.

Williams made his return to top flight football on 17 February 2012 for Manly-Warringah when they again traveled to England to face the Leeds Rhino's in the 2012 World Club Challenge match, this time at the Rhino's home ground Headingley Carnegie Stadium. The Wolfman came through the match without further neck problems but his return was spoiled by his opposite number Ryan Hall who scored 2 tries in a Man of the Match performance (including a 95m intercept try in the 27th minute when Williams looked set to score in the corner) that helped Leeds reverse the 2009 result with a 26–12 win.

The Wolfman enjoyed a stellar year in 2013 for Manly-Warringah club and finished the minor round as the seasons equal leading try scorer having crossed for 19 tries. Williams won the award along with David Simmons from Penrith and James McManus of the Newcastle Knights.

Williams played in the 2013 NRL Grand Final loss against Sydney Roosters in which the player endured a horror night. Firstly Williams was out jumped for the ball in the first half by Daniel Tupou which led to a try. In the second half, Williams failed to kick the ball dead as roosters player Michael Jennings raced past him to score the winning try.[12][13]

On 10 July 2014, Williams was banned from playing in the NRL for the rest of the 2014 NRL season following revelations he had bet on matches.[14]

Williams returned to the Manly-Warringah squad in 2015, scoring the winning try in Manly's ANZAC Day match against Melbourne. He was named captain of Manly's NSW Cup team where he played at Fullback. He retired at the end of the season.

The filming process was very different to preparing for a rugby league game.
It's a lot easier than running at Sam Burgess.

Williams on his first acting role in 2013.[15]

Outside football[edit]

Williams made his acting debut in 2013 in Tropfest short film finalist Darkness Comes in which he plays a wolf man.[16] Apart from his work in the field Williams works as a part-time model. He has done modelling for Calvin Klein and the charity calendar, Gods of Football.[17]


  1. ^ Adrian Proszenko, Daniel Lane (28 August 2011). "Quick-thinking Slater praised for first aid on Wolfman". Brisbane Times. Retrieved 28 August 2011.
  2. ^ RLP
  3. ^ "NRL Stats". Archived from the original on 25 June 2009. Retrieved 25 June 2009.
  4. ^ Herald Sun
  5. ^ "Baptism of fire for new Sea Eagle". Fox Sports. 9 May 2008. Retrieved 9 May 2008.
  6. ^ Marshall, Matt (21 April 2009). "Brother wants to tame Wolfman". The Herald Sun. Retrieved 27 April 2009.
  7. ^ "Grand final: As it happened". Fox Sports. 5 October 2008. Retrieved 5 October 2008.
  8. ^ Gee, Steve (7 October 2008). "'Wolfman' David Williams has beard shaved off". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 11 December 2008. Retrieved 27 April 2009.
  9. ^ "Manly six win Australia call-up". BBC. 7 October 2008. Retrieved 7 October 2008.
  10. ^ Six manly players in australia squad Archived 7 October 2008 at the Wayback Machine – Sydney Morning Herald
  11. ^ Balym, Todd (3 May 2009). "Blues halfback duel in two as Mitchell Pearce misses selection". Fox Sports. Retrieved 3 May 2009.
  12. ^ "Grand final shocker behind me: Williams". www.abc.net.au. 31 January 2014.
  13. ^ "NRL grand final: five things we learned". www.theguardian.com. 6 October 2013.
  14. ^ "Williams banned for betting on NRL matches". www.abc.net.au. 10 July 2014.
  15. ^ Auerbach, Taylor (11 December 2013). "Short film Bamboozled wins the 2013 Tropfest Film Festival at Centennial Park". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  16. ^ "From running on rugby league fields to acting on the Hollywood big screen". Fox Sports. 11 December 2013. Retrieved 11 December 2013.
  17. ^ David Williams, a true god of football

External links[edit]