Paul Sykes (rugby league)

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Paul Sykes
Paul Sykes.jpg
Personal information
Full name Paul Sykes
Nickname Sykesy, Syko
Born (1981-08-11) 11 August 1981 (age 35)
Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, England
Height 5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)
Weight 14 st 7 lb (92 kg)[1]
Playing information
Position Fullback, Centre, Stand-off/Five-eighth
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1999–02 Bradford Bulls 10 2 3 0 14
2002–07 Harlequins RL 134 46 272 4 732
2008–12 Bradford Bulls 100 36 72 2 290
2012(Loan) Wakefield Trinity Wildcats 22 3 73 3 161
2013–14 Wakefield Trinity Wildcats 40 9 55 3 149
2015 Featherstone Rovers 32 16 89 0 242
2016– Dewsbury Rams 35 10 83 1 207
Total 373 122 647 13 1795
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2005–10 England 5 2 6 0 20
2007–08 Great Britain 1 1 0 0 4
As of 26 March 2017
Source: RLP Love Rugby League

Paul Sykes (born 11 August 1981 in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire) is an English professional rugby league footballer for Featherstone Rovers (Captain) (Heritage № 1014). He has previously also played for Bradford, Harlequins RL and Wakefield Trinity.

Sykes' position of choice is at Right-Centre. He has for most of his career operated at Fullback. He has also played some games in the Stand-off role.


Paul Sykes is a product of Bradford academy, making his breakthrough in the 1999 Bradford season during 1999's Super League IV. However opportunities at Odsal Stadium were limited and so Sykes went on loan spells at London in both the 2001 and 2002 seasons.

In his first spell at Bradford, he was loaned out to Wakefield RFC for which he played one game of Rugby Union.

Move to London[edit]

With the promise of more regular first XIII rugby Sykes moved south to join the London Broncos in a permanent deal in August 2002.

Sykes soon settled back to life in the capital and representative honours were gained with an appearance for England "A" against New Zealand in October, followed by a place on the successful "A" team tour to Fiji and Tonga.

Sykes has further earned England caps against Russia and Wales in 2003 and France and New Zealand in 2005.

Sykes originally came to the club as full-back, but the arrival of club captain Mark McLinden has seen Sykes operate largely in the centres in Super League X and XI.

Paul successfully converted during 2005 to the centre position where his powerful running and strong tackling are seen to their best advantage.

Super League XI saw Paul Sykes ruled out for much of the season after damaging his kidneys in February. However he made a comeback towards the end of the season after initially being ruled out for the entire campaign

2005 was a record breaking year for Sykes. On 27 February against Wakefield Trinity, Sykes kicked 12 goals from 12 attempts to break a 17-year-old London club record.

Further records for most goals and most points followed at the season's end and in recognition of these achievements Paul was voted Supporters' Player-of-the-Year for 2005. Harlequins centre Paul Sykes has confirmed his expected move to Bradford for next season on a two-year contract.

Paul Sykes, who made his Great Britain début earlier this season, left Bradford on loan in 2002 to find first-team rugby.

Quins coach Brian McDermott also paid tribute to Sykes's contribution at the Stoop.

Bradford and Wakefield Trinity[edit]

Paul Sykes signed for Bradford in September 2007 as a replacement for the departing Ben Harris.

On rejoining Bradford he said: "A lot's changed at Bradford since the first time around and I think there's only Paul Deacon and Jamie Langley still there. "But I'm ready for a fresh challenge and I'm hoping to move back north to win some silverware. Bradford are always challenging and I'm glad I'm going to be a part of that. "Also, my girlfriend has just given birth to our first child as well and we want to be closer to our family." Boss Steve McNamara reckons he has picked up a rare talent, and added "I'm absolutely delighted to have secured an outstanding English centre and thank the board for making the deal possible".

In the 2012 season Sykes was loaned out to fellow West Yorkshire club Wakefield Trinity after only playing 2 games for Bradford. Here he managed to help lead Wakefield Trinity into the play-offs ironically at the expense of Bradford. Sykes soon signed a permanent 1 Year Deal with Trinity for the 2013 season.

Career statistics[edit]

Season Appearance Tries Goals F/G Points
2008 Bradford 29 16 3 0 70
2009 Bradford 26 10 17 0 74
2010 Bradford 27 4 48 2 114
2011 Bradford 16 6 2 0 28
2012 Bradford 2 0 2 0 4
2012 Wakefield Trinity 19 3 71 2 157
2013 Wakefield Trinity 16 5 36 2 94
2014 Wakefield Trinity 24 4 28 1 73
Total 159 48 207 8 614

Great Britain[edit]

In June 2007 Sykes was called up to the Great Britain squad[2][3] and will play in the centres in the Test match against France.[4]

Sykes is joined in the Great Britain Test side by Quins teammate Chris Melling.[5]

Paul Sykes made his Great Britain début in the 42–14 victory over the French on 22 June 2007, scoring one try.[6][7]


In September 2008 he was named in the England training squad for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup,[8] and in October 2008 he was named in the final 24-man England squad.[9]

He has been named in the England team to face Wales at the Keepmoat Stadium, Doncaster, prior to England's departure for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup.[10]

Sykes has also represented the England in their warm up match against Wales before the 2009 Four Nations.


  1. ^ "The official Engage Super League web site". web page. Super League. Retrieved 20 August 2011. 
  2. ^ "Eight new faces in Lions squad". BBC. 12 June 2007. Retrieved 12 June 2007. 
  3. ^ "Melling and Sykes named in GB squad". Quins RL. 13 June 2007. Retrieved 13 June 2007. 
  4. ^ "New-look GB select five new caps". BBC. 20 June 2007. Retrieved 20 June 2007. 
  5. ^ "Melling and Sykes to play at Headingley". Quins. 20 June 2007. Retrieved 20 June 2007. 
  6. ^ "Great Britain 42–14 France". BBC. 22 June 2007. Retrieved 24 June 2007. 
  7. ^ "Hungry Lions Please Smith". SportingLife. 22 June 2007. Retrieved 24 June 2007. 
  8. ^ "Myler gets England call". England Rugby League. 29 September 2008. Retrieved 3 October 2008. 
  9. ^ "Purdham earns World Cup call-up". BBC. 7 October 2008. Retrieved 7 October 2008. 
  10. ^ "Gleeson to lead new-look England". BBC. 9 October 2008. Retrieved 10 October 2008. 

External links[edit]