The best Newcastle players who have never played representative football

For the previous articles in this series, I will try to create a quality team for every NRL club consisting of players only since 1980 who have never gone beyond club level.

The criteria for selection is that no representation can be made at the senior level – including international, state key, PM XIII, city vs. country or All Star – and current players are excluded.

Where a player has played for more than one club, they will only be counted for the team for which they have played the most first-grade games.

This aspect is similar to my recently selected North Queensland team. A fashionless club overlooked by selectors has many extremely good long-term footballers.

Full refund

Milton Thaide (29 matches, 2005-07); 15 wins, 14 defeats, 14 attempts)

A former Super 12 rugby player with the Waratah, Milton had three injury-plagued seasons with the Thai Knights but showed a glimpse of his talent, making 14 tries in just 29 games. He retired in 2007 at the age of 27 after a serious injury.


Brett Grogan (62 matches, 1994-98; 38 wins, 22 losses, 26 attempts; seven finals, three wins)

Grogan played five seasons for the Knights and appeared in their final series in 1994, 1997 and 1998, although he unfortunately missed the 1997 grand final.

Grogan moved to England in 1999 and played for the Gateshead Thunder before returning to Australia in a final with the Northern Eagles.

Tony Herman (48 matches, 1989-95; 25 wins, 22 losses, seven attempts; five finals, three wins)

Tony Herman was a strong player for the Knights to play in their first final series in 1992. His best season was his last, playing 23 games and reaching the Knights Preliminary Finals that year.

Night fans

(Photo by Ashley Federer / Getty Images)


Glenn Miller (84 matches, 1988-92; 34 wins, 48 ​​losses, 11 attempts; two finals, one win)

Glenn Miller joined the Knights for their entry into the NSWRL after playing four games with Penrith in two seasons. Miller played more than 80 games in five seasons with the Knights. He played in the final against Newcastle in his final season in 1992 before retiring.

Miller is a plumber in the business, and it came to work before their training place in the club’s early years – once he had to cut a pair of bolts from his truck into Wickham’s Pasmore Oval.

Jeff Doyle (71 matches, 1988-91; 30 wins, 36 losses, 20 attempts, 19 goals)

Former Radcliffe player Jeff Doyle was another member of the 1988 night class. He spent four years at the club before playing more than 130 first-grade games in North Sydney and the Western Reds. He also found time to spend a season with Hale in the English competition.

After retiring, Doyle coached the North Beach Sea Eagles in Western Australia for the Premiership before moving to Queensland and before owning a series of Roma and then McDonald’s restaurants in Townsville.


Shawn Ruder (131 matches, 1998-2003; 79 wins, 48 ​​defeats, 21 attempts; 11 finals, four wins)

With several players named Johns in Newcastle, you might think it would be hard to find half for this team, but here we have Shawn Ruder, a local junior who played six seasons at the club in the Johns era. And five of them have played more than 22 games.

Radar came in first grade in 1998, the year after the Knights ARL Premiership. He played a prominent role as the club played the next six final series, highlighted by their 2001 Grand Slam grand final upset, where Ruder made two tri-assists in fifth-eighth place.

Ruder left Newcastle for England in 2004, playing for Castleford before returning to the country and then for the Catalans. He also had time to play rugby union in Japan (great name for Ricoh Black Rams), France (Perpignan) and Australia (Southern District) before reaching the grand final, before ending his playing days with Newtown in the NSW Cup. In 2008 he received a one-game call-up for a final NRL game with the Sydney Roosters after a 1749-day break from the NRL.

Even then there were football bugs, and Ruder West turned out for Newcastle and Mareweather Carlton Rugby Union.


Steve Fulmer (64 matches, 1988-91; 27 wins, 34 defeats, 14 attempts, one field goal)

Steve Fulmer was the starting halfback of the first three seasons as the Knights entered the ARL competition. Fulmer was a strong playmaker for the team and won the club’s Best and Most Beautiful award in 1990. After retiring, Fulmer coached for a while and in 2004 recommended the next player of the team to the club.


Bill Peden (190 matches, 1994-2002; 115 wins, 69 defeats, 42 attempts, 35 goals from 54 attempts; 17 finals, nine wins)

Billy Peden is an absolute legend of Newcastle football club and the only non-representative player to have lined up for both the club’s premiership in 1997 and 2001. He is also the only player to have played in the club’s first Premiership, a reserve grade in 1995.

Peden joined the club as a mature 24-year-old, having already played more than 100 games for Cesnok, after which he was named one of the best team of their century.

In 1997, Peden, who was initially a lock or second-rower, was transferred to Hooker for the last two games of the season, making an attempt in the preliminary finals. Between his debut in 1994 and his final season for the club in 2002, they had only two appearances at Hooker.

Peden Knights Shock made two tries from Lock in the grand final victory against Paramatman in 2001, after which he came up with the famous quote, “Sometimes the sun shines on the dog’s boom”.

After finishing with the Knights, Peden played a season in England with the London Broncos.

After trials with Paramatman and Canberra, Peden could have been so easily lost to the Knights, where then-grade coach Craig Bellamy sent him a letter saying he was not good enough for first grade.

And let’s not forget that Peden made his film debut in addition to those critically acclaimed masterpieces. Young Einstein 1988 (at least according to Wikipedia).

(Adam Pretty / ALLSPORT)

The second row

Paul Marquette (137 matches, 1990-2001; 76 wins, 56 defeats, nine attempts; six finals, five wins)

Paul Marquette is one of the most experienced players in all of these articles, playing 231 first-class games in Australia. Marquette made his debut for the Knights in 1990, leaving after 110 appearances, and was named Player of the Year in 1995 for playing in the isolated Super League for the Hunter Mariners. After the Mariners’ death, Marquette spent three seasons at Melbourne Storm, where he was a member of their 1999 winning team.

To show that he can heal all wounds, Marquette was welcomed back to the Knights in 2001. After winning the 2001 Premiership, the veteran appeared in 27 matches for the season. He then spent a year in England for Warrington.

The All Up Marquette has reached the finals throughout its career, winning the 2000 World Club Challenge in Melbourne and losing the 1997 World Club Challenge in the Mariners to Brisbane.

David Boyd (114 matches, 1988-93; 54 wins, 54 losses, eight attempts, one goal; two finals, one win)

David Boyd was another member of the Knights opening team after playing eight games for the Bulldogs in 1988, including their grand final loss to the 1986 Paramatman.

Boyd played six seasons for Newcastle and appeared in the club’s 1992 final campaign before moving to England with Halifax. He was sent back to Australia to play in the first season of a club for the second time with the Western Reds. Boyd returned to England with Hull in 1997.

In 1993, Boyd became one of the first players to appear in Newcastle’s 100 first-grade games with Michael Hagan and Mark Glanville.


Peter Johnston (45 matches, 1989-91; 21 wins, 20 defeats, five attempts, 16 goals)

Peter Johnston was a travelman who played a combined 37 matches for Canterbury and the Eastern Suburbs and spent a season in England before joining the Knights in 1989. Johnston appeared about 50 times in the next three seasons. Oddly enough, he tried five times and scored 16 goals in his first season at the club and never got a point again.

Johnston enjoyed a busy year while in England. He was present in a Challenge Cup final, losing by one point to Castleford; A League Cup trophy, lost to Wigan; And won a Yorkshire Cup over Castleford.

Daniel Toler (101 matches, 2004-11; 44 wins, 57 losses, 5 attempts)

Daniel Toler has played more than 100 games for the Knights throughout his NRL career, primarily as a bench middle forward. He played at least 20 matches in 2005, 2008 and 2010.


Matt Hilder (101 matches, 2008-13; 50 wins, 51 losses, 13 attempts, one goal; four finals, two wins)

I could throw Matt Hilder anywhere on the field and he did a great job. Blessed with the beauty of a nickname, Waltzing also has a very strong record of 201 first-grade games, first with the Cronula and the Gold Coast before their more than 100 matches against the Knights, including their appearances in the 2009 and 2013 finals. Hilder won the Knights Player of the Year award in 2010.


David Mullen (61 matches, 1990-93; 30 wins, 24 losses, two attempts; two finals, one win)

Hooker David Mullen played for the Knights between 1990 and 1993, including the club’s first final series in 1992, during which time he moved to the second row to accommodate Robbie McCormack. Mulan made two attempts in his debut season and never got a point again. His last game was Round 4 in 1993.

Reagan Tanner (83 matches, 2003-07; 35 wins, 48 ​​losses, three attempts, three goals)

Lock forward Reagan has played five seasons with the Tanner Knights. He appeared in the finals in 2003 and 2006 and was the only Knight to play in each of the 2005 seasons. Tanner was released in 2007 – the year Brian Smith had problems with some of his players – and returned to Newcastle to play for the Currie Bulldogs and work in the mines. He played for several years and retired in 2013 after playing in a grand final and winning the Player of the Year award.

Peter Shields (61 matches, 1998-2000; 35 wins, 23 losses, 12 attempts; five finals, one win)

Peter Shields has already played three seasons with the Knights since 1998 for the Penrith, Wests and Western Reds, where he played in final football each season.

After leaving the Knights, Shields spent two seasons in England with powerhouse St. Helens and was part of the team that won the 2001 Challenge Cup, the 2002 Super League Grand Final and the 2001 World Club Challenge defeat to the Brisbane Broncos.

If you search the shields on the internet, he is best known for his fairly enthusiastic punch-up with Robert Ralph of Canterbury during the 1998 Final Series.

Troy Fletcher (89 matches, 1996-2001; 53 wins, 32 losses, two attempts; six finals, three wins)

Troy Fletcher appeared on the bench for the Knights’ 1997 grand final victory in all but one of the club’s games that season. Overall he has played six seasons for Newcastle, mainly as a bench player. Like many Newcastle players, after finishing with the Knights, Fletcher played in the Newcastle competition, becoming captain-coach for West Roselles and winning the Premiership in 2002 and 2004.

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