Sam Thaiday : biography
Samuel Thaiday ( born 12 June 1985 in Sydney, New South Wales), is an Australian professional rugby league footballer who captains the Brisbane Broncos of the National Rugby League. An Australian international and Queensland State of Origin representative forward, he has spent all of his career at the Broncos, with whom he won the 2006 premiership. In 2008, Australia's centenary of rugby league and Thaiday's sixth year at the top level, he was one of only three current players to be named in the Indigenous Australian rugby league team of the century. ABC News 9 August 2008
Thaiday, who is of Torres Strait Islander descent, was born in Sydney. He played rugby league football for the Brothers club in Townsville, attending Kirwan State High School. His cousin Milton Thaiday also became an NRL footballer.
On 11 July 2003, aged 18, he made his National Rugby League debut for the Brisbane Broncos against the Bulldogs in round 18 of the 2003 NRL season.
Solid form in the first 10 weeks of the Broncos season earned Thaiday a spot on the Queensland bench for game one of the 2006 State of Origin series. He was also selected on the bench for the following two games for the Maroons, who went on to win the series. After that, when the Broncos were in the "slump that wasn't a slump", coach Wayne Bennett moved Thaiday from the bench to the starting side. This, among other changes, saw the Broncos' season turn around, and they ended up winning the 2006 NRL Grand Final. Thaiday was selected for his international debut for the Australian national team in Game 2 of the 2006 Tri-Nations against New Zealand after concussion ruled Willie Mason out.
Sam Thaiday in action against the KnightsIn the 2007 NRL season Thaiday suffered an injury to the bone around his eye socket and missed all three games of the 2007 State of Origin series for the Queensland Maroons while waiting to recover. He made his 50th first grade appearance in the NRL in 2007 and re-signed with the Broncos until the end of 2009.
In the 2008 NRL season Thaiday was back in form and started the year with a bang, winning back to back man of the match awards in rounds eight and nine to earn himself a starting spot in the 2008 State of Origin series. He was named in the Australia training squad for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup.
In April 2009, Thaiday was named in the 25-man training squad to represent Queensland in the opening State of Origin match of that year. He was named man of the match in the second game of the series. At the end of that season Thaiday played for Australia in their successful 2009 Four Nations campaign in Europe.
In 2011 it was announced that Thaiday would be the Broncos' captain for the following season, taking over from the retiring Darren Lockyer despite the return to the club of former Broncos favourite Petero Civoniceva. After the 2011 NRL season, Thaiday travelled with the Australian national team to Britain for the 2011 Four Nations tournament. On 3 November 2011 The annual RLIF Awards dinner was held at the Tower of London and Thaiday was named second-row forward of the year.
Thaiday played for Australia in their victory in the 2012 ANZAC Test against New Zealand. He also played in Game I of the 2012 State of Origin series but had to pull out of Game II with a shoulder injury.
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