Kurt Gidley : biography
Kurt Gidley (born 7 June 1982 in Newcastle, New South Wales) is a professional Australian rugby league player and captain of the Newcastle Knights in the NRL. An Australian international and New South Wales State of Origin representative fullback he has played his entire NRL career to date with the Knights. He is the younger brother of Matthew Gidley. A versatile player, he is able to play a wide variety of positions including fullback which is his prime position, and in both halfback and five-eighth, he can also play hooker.
In 2011, Gidley competed in the third season of the Channel Seven television series Australia's Greatest Athlete.
Early and personal life
Gidley is the youngest of three brothers. He was an apprentice butcher when he left high school. Gidley's current partner is Brooke McNamara.http://www.dailytelegraph.com.au/sport/ideal-cure-for-kurts-blues/story-e6freye0-1225881774824 He was a Hunter Mariners junior. 1908.com
Gidley had a productive 2004 season (being 18th man for the NSW Blues), but missed most of season 2005 due to injury. He was then selected in the 2008 State of Origin series shortly after a fractured cheekbone.
In round 10 of the 2004 NRL season Gidley made history when he won the NRL's first ever golden point match by kicking the winning field goal after 3 minutes and 26 seconds of extra time. The Knights were without Andrew Johns for the season. That game was against the Broncos at Lang Park (Suncorp Stadium).
In 2006, Gidley travelled to Papua New Guinea to play for the Prime Minister's XIII against the Kumuls.
Gidley had a productive season in 2007. He scored multiple times for the Newcastle Knights as well as having done well at converting goals. He scored 15 points against the South Sydney Rabbitohs. He has also represented NSW in 2007 State of Origin.
In the final round of the 2007 season, with scores level at 24–24, he kicked a penalty goal 12 seconds before fulltime to give the Knights a 26–24 victory over the Wests Tigers (who needed to win to book a finals spot), which also ended a 7 match losing streak and allowed Newcastle to avoid the wooden spoon.
Gidley was the stand-out player at the club in the 2008 season as they finished ninth on the NRL ladder with 12 wins and 12 losses. Gidley led the scoring at the club with 150 points and also took the try-scoring award with nine tries. Regarded as one of the best utility players in the game, Gidley was also appointed captain of the Knights for the next season, replacing England-bound hooker and club legend Danny Buderus. At the end of the 2008 NRL season, Gidley was named the Newcastle club's player of the year.
In the 2009 season Kurt Gidley again lead the club's season in points as the Knights finished 7th after a good year. Kurt also achieved the second best percentage of kicking goals, with 82.1%, only being beaten by Michael Gordon with 93.4%.
In August 2008, Gidley was named in the preliminary 46-man Kangaroos squad for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup, and in October 2008 he was selected in the final 24-man Australia squad. He was selected for Australia in the one-off test match against New Zealand on 8 May 2009.
In May 2009, he was named as captain and fullback to represent New South Wales in the opening State of Origin match on 3 June 2009, in Melbourne.
In November 2009, he was named in the Australian national team to take part in the 2009 Four Nations. In Australia's opening game of the tournament against New Zealand he played as the 17th man utility, making an impact in the last quarter of the game. In game three against France, he was chosen to replace regular fullback Billy Slater who was rested along with others. He successfully converted two goals which played part in the final 42–4 Australian win. On 7 November, Gidley was chosen on the interchange bench for the Four Nations final played in Leeds in which the Kangaroos thrashed England 46–16. He was brought on into the centres to replace an injured Justin Hodges early in the game.
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