Craig Fitzgibbon is an Australian former professional rugby league footballer of the 1990s, 2000s and 2010s. A New South Wales State of Origin and Australia national representative goal-kicking forward, he played in the National Rugby League for the Illawarra Steelers and St. George Illawarra Dragons as well as for the Sydney Roosters, with whom he won the 2002 NRL Premiership. Fitzgibbon played in the Super League for Hull FC, he was the last coach of the Country New South Wales rugby league team. The son of former professional rugby league footballer and coach Allan Fitzgibbon, Craig Fitzgibbon played his first game of junior football with the Dapto under-9Bs, his heroes as a child were Bradley Clyde and Andrew Ettingshausen. Fitzgibbon began his playing career for the Illawarra Steelers in 1998. In his first season, he was the Steelers' top point-scorer and was named rookie of the year. Following the Steelers' merger with St. George Dragons, he played for the merged club St. George Illawarra Dragons.
Fitzgibbon played from the bench in the 1999 NRL Grand Final, scoring the first try in the Dragons' 20–18 loss. Fitzgibbon subsequently transferred to the Roosters in 2000, he played at second-row forward and scored a try in the Roosters' 2000 NRL Grand Final loss to the Brisbane Broncos. Fitzgibbon won a premiership with the Roosters, playing at second-row forward in their 2002 NRL grand final victory over the New Zealand Warriors and winning the Clive Churchill Medal for his best-on-ground performance. Having won the 2002 NRL Premiership, the Roosters travelled to England to play the 2003 World Club Challenge against Super League champions, St Helens R. F. C.. Fitzgibbon played at scoring a try and kicking nine goals in Sydney's victory. In the 2003 NRL grand final Fitzgibbon played in the second row and was the Roosters' goal-kicker in their loss to the Penrith Panthers. After that he was selected to go on the 2003 Kangaroo tour. Fitzgibbon played for the Roosters at second-row forward in their 2004 NRL grand final loss to cross-Sydney rivals, the Bulldogs.
Fitzgibbon was selected in the Australian team to go and compete in the end of season 2004 Rugby League Tri-Nations tournament. In the final against Great Britain he played from the interchange bench and kicked two goals in the Kangaroos' 44–4 victory. In 2006, Fitzgibbon succeeded Luke Ricketson as captain of the Roosters. On 12 August 2006, he became the highest scoring forward in premiership history, surpassing ex-Canberra Raiders back-rower David Furner. Fitzgibbon passed the previous record of 1218 points by converting winger Sam Perrett's third try in the 64th minute after beginning the match four points behind the Canberra forward. In August 2008, Fitzgibbon was named in the preliminary 46-man Kangaroos squad for the 2008 Rugby League World Cup, in October 2008 he was selected in the final 24-man Australia squad. On 16 May 2009 it was announced that Craig had signed a one-year deal, with the option of a second year, with English Super League side Hull for the 2010 season. Craig Fitzgibbon was selected for the Exiles squad for the Rugby League International Origin Match against England at Headingley on 10 June 2011.
On 3 September 2011 Fitzgibbon suffered a fracture and ligament damage to his ankle and announced his retirement at the age of 34. On the 26 September announced he would return to the Sydney Roosters in 2012 as a part of its Coaching Staff Played in the 1999, 2000, 2002, 2003 & 2004 Grand Finals Won the Clive Churchill Medal in the 2002 Grand Final Played 8 games for New South Wales 2003–2005 Played 15 games for Australia 2002–2005 Played 4 games for Country vs. City 2002, 2004, 2005 & 2006 Craig Fitzgibbon is the highest point scoring forward Has played 239 first grade games Has kicked over 600 goals for the Sydney Roosters One of the last remaining Illawarra Steelers players On 24 August 2015, Fitzgibbon was named as coach for the Country New South Wales rugby league team, replacing Trent Barrett for 2016. Sydney Roosters profile National Rugby League Profile National Rugby League Home Craig Fitzgibbon Rugby League Tables & Statistics State of Origin / New South Wales Players Rugby League Tables & Statistics Sydney Roosters profile Illawarra Steelers Profile Craig Fitzgibbon to Hull FC Hull FC website History → Coaches & Captains at hullfc.com
St Helens R.F.C.
St Helens R. F. C. is a professional rugby league club in St Helens, Merseyside who compete in the Super League, the top tier of competition for rugby league in Europe. Formed in 1873, St Helens are one of the 22 original members of the Northern Rugby Football Union and have been league champions on 13 occasions. St Helens are the third most successful side in the Challenge Cup with 12 wins in 21 Final appearances. St Helens are founding members of the Super League and are one of only four teams to have appeared in every season since its creation in 1996. Since 1961 the club's home colours have been white, with a red "V" on the jersey. St Helens play their home games at the Totally Wicked Stadium in St Helens, having moved from their previous home, Knowsley Road, in 2012. St Helens are one of the oldest members of the Rugby Football League. Founded as St Helens Football Club on 19 November 1873 at the Fleece Hotel by William Douglas Herman, they played their first match on 31 January 1874 against Liverpool Royal Infirmary.
They became known as St Helens Rangers up until the 1880s. The club moved from the City Ground in 1890 where they had shared with St Helens Recs when neither were members of the Northern Rugby Football Union, they defeated Manchester Rangers in the first match played at Knowsley Road. In 1895 the club were one of 22 clubs that resigned from the Rugby Football Union and established the Northern Union; the first match of the new code was an 8—3 win at home to Rochdale Hornets before 3,000 spectators, Bob Doherty scoring St Helens' first try. They played in a vertically striped blue and white jersey—a stark contrast to the well known broad red band which would become the kit for the club later; the club reverted to this kit for one season during the rugby league centenary season in 1995. The Challenge Cup was launched in 1897 and it was St Helens who contested its first final with Batley, at Headingley, Leeds; the "Gallant Youths" of Batley emerged victorious 10—3, with Dave "Red" Traynor scoring the lone St Helens' try.
Between 1897 and 1901, St Helens were not successful generally considered a mid—table side. They finished second to bottom in the 1900—01 Lancashire League season, meaning they did not qualify to compete in the national league the year later. In the 1901—02 season, they did finish third in the Lancashire league. In 1902 -- 03, the combined Lancashire and Yorkshire leagues saw. St Helens finished next to bottom and suffered relegation. Promotion was gained at the 1st attempt, only for another poor year to see them finish once again in a relegation position; however the two Divisions became one League to save the club from a 2nd relegation. The Champion fortunes that St Helens fans' greet today were not apparent in this period, with the club finishing fourth to bottom in 1907, third to bottom in 1908, mid—table between 1909 and 1913. On 14 June 1913, St Helens Recs joined the Northern Union after defecting from rugby union and association football; the Recs were based individually at the City Road ground, after sharing with St Helens, before their move to Knowsley Road, when neither played rugby league.
The Recs played their first game on 6 September 1913. St Helens now had two professional rugby league teams. In both sides first year in co—existence, St Helens finished yet again in a disappointing low mid—table finish. During the First World War, St Helens struggled to compete and failed to complete the full fixture list of the Emergency War League on two occasions, with the club finishing mid—table in the first year of the war, as well as being beaten by 37 points to 3 by Huddersfield in that year's Challenge Cup Final; the aftermath of the war was still taking its toll on national sport, not the club's ability to compete and complete fixtures, on 31 Jan 1918'close down' due to a lack of finances following a 22-0 defeat by Widnes. Saints re-open on 25 December 1918 and are beaten 20 points to nil by St Helens Recs in a friendly fixture at City Road. In the shortened 1918—1919 season, St Helens played only nine times; the clubs lack of success and disappointing league finishes continued for another seven seasons.
The club defeated town rivals the Recs in the Lancashire County Cup Final by 10 points to 2 in the 1926–27 season. The season after, they were trophyless. One year after the Challenge Cup's début at Wembley, St Helens reached the final there where they were defeated by 10 points to 3 by Widnes in 1930, they won their first National Championship in the 1931–32 season, defeating Huddersfield 9—5 in the final. This was the same season that they won their second Lancashire League, the first coming in the 1929–30 season, they lost the 1933 Lancashire Cup Final to Warrington, whilst finishing in no competitive position in the league once more. St Helens achieved any more honours during the remainder of the 1930s. What appeared to be building as something of an inter—town derby between the two St Helens clubs was struck down as St Helens Recs played their last game on 29 April 1939, as, due to the economic depression, it was not possible for the town to sustain two teams. Like during the First World War, the club could not enjoy having a full—time squad during the Second World War and struggled to compete.
They did not compete in the National Championship until a 17 team Emergency War League was formed in the 1941—42 season, did not win any regional honours. They finished bottom of the EWL in seasons 1942—43 and 1943—44 and next-to-bottom in 1944—45; the club's fortunes that had seen them be successful so the decade previous did not change in the 1940s. After the commitments of the Second World War, St Helens still found it hard to compete, the tren
Rugby league positions
A rugby league team consists of thirteen players on the field, with four substitutes on the bench. Each of the thirteen players is assigned a position with a standardised number, which reflects their role in attack and defence, although players can take up any position at any time. Players are divided into two general types and backs. Forwards are chosen for their size and strength, they are expected to run with the ball, to attack, to make tackles. Forwards are required to improve the team's field position thus creating space and time for the backs. Backs are smaller and faster, though a big, fast player can be of advantage in the backs, their roles require speed and ball-playing skills, rather than just strength, to take advantage of the field position gained by the forwards. Forwards tend to operate in the centre of the field, while backs operate nearer to the touch-lines, where more space can be found; the diagram, shows the typical positions of each player during a scrum. The laws of the game recognise standardised numbering of positions.
The starting side wear the numbers corresponding to their positions, only changing in the case of substitutions and position shifts during the game. In some competitions, such as Super League, players receive a squad number to use all season, no matter what positions they play in; the positions and the numbers are defined by the game's laws as: Backs1 Full Back 2 Right Wing Threequarter 3 Right Centre Threequarter 4 Left Centre Threequarter 5 Left Wing Threequarter 6 Stand-off Half or Five-eighth 7 Scrum Half or HalfbackForwards8 Prop 9 Hooker 10 Front Row Forward 11 Second Row Forward 12 Second Row Forward 13 Lock ForwardIn practice, the term'front row forward' is rarely used, a team has two props. The scrum half is known as the half back in Australasia, the lock forward is known as loose forward in England. There are seven backs, numbered 1 to 7. For these positions, the emphasis is on ball-handling skills; the "back-line" consists of smaller, more agile players. Numbered 1, the fullback's primary role is the last line of defence, standing behind the main line of defenders.
Defensively, fullbacks must be able to chase and tackle any player who breaks the first line of defence, must be able to catch and return kicks made by the attacking side. Their role in attack is as a support player, they are used to come into the line to create an overlap in attack. Fullbacks that feature in their respective nations' rugby league halls of fame are France's Puig Aubert, Australia's Clive Churchill and Billy Slater, Charles Fraser, Graeme Langlands and Graham Eadie, Great Britain/Wales' Jim Sullivan and New Zealand's Des White. There are four threequarters: two wingers and two centres - right wing, right centre, left centre and left wing; these players work in pairs, with one winger and one centre occupying each side of the field. Known as wingers. There are two wings in a rugby league team, numbered 2 and 5, they are positioned closest to the touch-line on each side of the field. They are among the fastest players in a team, with the speed to exploit space, created for them and finish an attacking move.
In defence their primary role is to mark their opposing wingers, they are usually required to catch and return kicks made by an attacking team dropping behind the defensive line to help the fullback. Wingers that feature in their nations' rugby league halls of fame are Great Britain's Billy Batten, Billy Boston and Clive Sullivan, Australia's Brian Bevan, John Ferguson, Ken Irvine, Harold Horder and Brian Carlson, South African Tom van Vollenhoven and France's Raymond Contrastin There are two centres and left, numbered 3 and 4 respectively, they are positioned just inside the wingers and are the second-closest players to the touch-line on each side of the field. In attack their primary role is to provide an attacking threat out wide and as such they need to be some of the fastest players on the pitch providing the pass for their winger to finish off a move. In defence, they are expected to mark their opposite centre. Centres that feature in their countries' halls of fame are France's Max Rousié, England's Eric Ashton, Harold Wagstaff and Neil Fox, Wales' Gus Risman and Australia's Reg Gasnier, H "Dally" Messenger, Dave Brown, Jim Craig, Bob Fulton and Mal Meninga.
There are two halves. Positioned more centrally in attack, beside or behind the forwards, they direct the ball and are the team's main play-makers, as such are required to be the most skillful and intelligent players on the team; these players usually perform most tactical kicking for their team. Numbered 6, the stand off or five-eighth is a strong passer and runner, while being agile; this player is referred to as "second receiver", as in attacking situations they are the second player to receive the ball and are able to initiate an attacking move. Star players of this position include Wally Lewis, Darren Lockyer, Bob Fulton, Brad Fittler, Laurie Daley and Terry Lamb Numbered 7, the scrum-half or half back is involved in directing the team's play; the position is sometimes referred to as "first receiver", as half backs are the first to receive the ball from the dummy-half after a play-the-ball. This makes them important decision-makers in attack. A rugby league forward pack consists of six players who tend to be bigger and stronger than backs, rely more on their strength and size to fulfill their roles than play-making skills.
The forwards traditionally formed and contested scrums, however in the modern game
Chris Flannery (rugby league)
Chris Flannery is an Australian former professional rugby league footballer of the 2000s and 2010s. A Queensland State of Origin representative forward, he played his club football in the National Rugby League for the Sydney Roosters, with whom he won the 2002 NRL Premiership, in the Super League for St. Helens, with whom he won the 2008 Challenge Cup. Flannery's usual position was lock although he played as a second-row, stand-off or centre. After retiring Flannery administered the Sunshine Coast Falcons of the Queensland Cup. Flannery was born in Australia. Flannery made his National Rugby League début for the Sydney Roosters in Round 14 of the 2000 NRL season against the Wests Tigers at Campbelltown Stadium on 7 May, he was first selected to play for Queensland in Game II of the 2002 State of Origin series at ANZ Stadium in Brisbane on 5 June. Queensland won 26–18. Flannery played for the Roosters from the interchange bench in their 2002 NRL grand final victory over the New Zealand Warriors, scoring a try.
Having won the 2002 NRL Premiership, the Roosters traveled to England to play the 2003 World Club Challenge against Super League champions, St. Helens. Flannery played at centre in Sydney's victory, he again played from the interchange bench for the Roosters in the 2003 NRL grand final, lost to the Penrith Panthers. Flannery played for Queensland in all three matches of the 2004 State of Origin series, he played for the Roosters at lock forward in their 2004 NRL grand final loss to cross-Sydney rivals, the Bulldogs. In 2007, Flannery signed for St. Helens on a three and a half year deal. Flannery was brought in as a direct replacement for fellow Australian Jason Hooper who had to retire following problems with his shoulder. Flannery described himself as strong in defence. "I like to add a bit to the ball playing by taking it up at first or second receiver. I like to run good lines into holes." He commenced his Knowsley Road career in 2007, after recovering from a broken leg. He played in the 2008 Super League Grand Final defeat by the Leeds Rhinos.
After returning to Australia, Flannery became chief executive of Queensland Cup team the Sunshine Coast Falcons. Chris Flannery at the Former Origin Greats website. Saints Heritage Society profile
New Zealand Warriors
The New Zealand Warriors are a professional rugby league football club based in Auckland, New Zealand that compete in the National Rugby League premiership and are the League's only team from outside Australia. They were formed in 1995 as the Auckland Warriors, are known as the Vodafone Warriors for sponsorship reasons; the Warriors are captained by Roger Tuivasa-Sheck. They are based at Mt Smart Stadium in the Auckland suburb of Penrose. For the 1995 season the newly-formed Auckland Warriors became the first club from outside Australia to be admitted to the Australian Rugby League's premiership when it expanded from 16 to 20 teams; as a result of the Super League war in the mid-1990s, Auckland left the ARL to compete in the Super League competition of 1997, before joining the re-unified NRL the following year. They re-branded themselves the New Zealand Warriors in 2001; the club has yet to win a premiership as of 2018, but has won one minor premiership, reached two grand finals, reached the play-offs eight times, provided the majority of the New Zealand national team's players.
Rugby league was centred around Auckland since the New Zealand Rugby League was founded in 1909. Auckland produced the bulk of the international squad for many years, most of these players headed to either Australia or Great Britain to play; the Auckland representative side was providing top opposition to touring teams. An Auckland team was admitted into the mid-week ARL Amco Cup competition in 1978. In their first year they made the semi-finals, were defeated by the overall competition winners, Eastern Suburbs, they remained into the competition until the early 1980s. In 1987, an Auckland side toured Great Britain and claimed wins over powerhouse clubs Leeds and Wigan. In 1988, serious investigation into an Auckland team entering the New South Wales Rugby League premiership commenced, encouraged by the Mt Albert club. On 17 May 1992, the announcement stating an Auckland-based team's entry into the Australian Rugby League competition, the Winfield Cup in 1995, was made; this followed good turnouts to a number of NSWRL club games played in Auckland.
The new team was to be called the Auckland Warriors and run by the Auckland Rugby League organisation. The original colours selected were blue, white and green. Blue and white are recognised as the colours of Auckland, while red and green were the colours of the Warriors' original sponsor, DB Bitter; the original logo was designed by Francis Allan, of Colenso. The coach of the new team would be Wigan coach John Monie. A number of senior players were signed, such as Andy Platt. Captain Dean Bell was a high-performing signing. Former Rugby union players such as John Kirwan and Marc Ellis were brought in, in years; the Warriors' first year in the Australian Rugby League was 1995. Their debut match was against the Brisbane Broncos on 10 March 1995 in front of 30,000 people at a newly refurbished Mt Smart Stadium; the Warriors led 22–10 at one point in the second half of the match, however the Broncos defeated the new club 25–22. A home crowd attendance record of 32,174 was set at Ericsson Stadium in Round 6 of the 1995 ARL season, a record, not topped until Round 1 of the 2011 NRL season.
The Warriors were deducted two competition points for an interchange error. In a match against Western Suburbs, the Warriors used five interchange players instead of the allowed four; the Warriors won the match comfortably, 46–12. This error had disastrous consequences for the club, as they missed the finals by two competition points; the season saw the debut of future star, Stacey Jones, who scored a try on debut in a 40–4 rout of Parramatta in Sydney. The biggest issue with the season was the lack of consistency, evident with the Warriors today, despite a six match winning streak late in the season, it was observed. The Australian Rugby League season 1996 could have been regarded as a better one for the Warriors; the Warriors found themselves siding with the Super League during the Super League War when the New Zealand Rugby League signed up to the rebel competition. They claimed their first'victory' over the Broncos in round one of the competition that year, after all Super League clubs agreed to boycott the first round of the competition in protest.
The Warriors won the two points when they travelled to Brisbane with a squad of players that were unsigned to Super League, forcing the Broncos to forfeit the match. With four rounds remaining the Warriors were in sixth place in the competition headed for a finals berth, they proceeded to lose. The only positives were that young New Zealand talents Stacey Jones and Joe Vagana had superb seasons; the Warriors spent 1997 in the breakaway Super League Telstra Cup competition. Despite the reduced number of teams, they failed to make an impression on the competition. Monie was replaced by Frank Endacott as coach midway through the 1997 season; the only positive was the team's performance in the World Club Challenge. The Warriors hammered United Kingdom powerhouses Wigan and St Helens, comfortably handled Warrington; the Warriors were knocked out in the Semi Finals by eventual winners Brisbane, going down 16–22. The first season of the reformed competition was a year, it was apparent that the club needed a new approach and attitude.
For them, they were in a better position than the other two clubs that joined the competition in 1995. Former Kiwi Mark Graham took over as coach in 1999; the club was sold off to a consortium that included ex-Ki
The Huddersfield Giants are an English professional rugby league club from Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, the birthplace of rugby league, who play in the Super League competition. They play their home games at the John Smiths Stadium, shared with Huddersfield Town F. C.. Huddersfield is one of the original twenty-two rugby clubs that formed the Northern Rugby Football Union in 1895, making them one of the world's first rugby league teams; the club is the world's oldest professional rugby league club. They have won 7 Championships and 6 Challenge Cups, but have not won a major trophy since 1962, some 53 years ago; the club amongst older supporters, is sometimes referred to as Fartown, named after the ground in Fartown, Huddersfield, the club's home venue from 1878 to 1992. The club was known as Huddersfield Barracudas from 1984–88 and Huddersfield-Sheffield Giants for the 2000 season; the team plays in a distinctive strip of a claret shirt with thin gold hoops, claret shorts and claret and gold hooped socks.
They have rivalries with Warrington, Bradford and Wakefield Trinity. The earliest record of a football match being played in the Huddersfield area is in 1848, when a team of men from Hepworth took on a team of men from Holmfirth near Whnuil Bank in Holmfirth. Hepworth won a close fought game which "exhibited the usual amount of confusions, bloody noses, etc" and took the prize of £5, jointly donated by each side. There appears to have been no formal structure to sport in the Huddersfield area until the opening of the Apollo Gymnasium on 3 August 1850. At this time the gymnasium was the only venue in the town where young men could take part in physical activities, it offered the opportunity to participate in fencing, bowling and many other sports. In 1864 the Apollo Gymnasium was turned into the Gymnasium Theatre; the athletes of the gymnasium responded by forming a more organised athletics association. In an advertisement headed "Huddersfield Athletic Club" they invited "gentlemen desirous of becoming members" to a public meeting at 8 o'clock on the evening of 16 November 1864 at the Queen Hotel.
The meeting went a committee was formed. Within a month a new gymnasium was in service in a basement on Back John William Street; the club's 1864 foundation means that it is the oldest Rugby League club, both in terms of foundation date and continuous history. On 27 January 1866, twenty members of the Huddersfield Athletic Club agreed to play a football match against twenty of the Huddersfield Rifle Corps at Rifle Field in Trinity Street. Although the result was a scoreless draw, a large crowd was attracted. In light of this, the Huddersfield Athletic Club agreed to start a football section, to start at the beginning of December 1866; the Huddersfield Athletic Club made no contribution to the support of the football club and each paying member was forced to pay a subscription of 2s/6d. As the football club grew, it became a useful recruiting tool for the Huddersfield Athletic Club. In 1869 six matches were played and by 1870 three of the club's players had been selected to represent Yorkshire.
By 1872 there were so many players. The growth in popularity of the club and the need for better facilities led to the Huddersfield Athletic Club approaching St John's Cricket Club with a proposal to merge the two clubs. St John's Cricket Club had moved to Fartown ground. By 1875, when amalgamation talks began, over £800 had been spent on developing the new ground. At a meeting on 27 November 1875, at the Thornhill Arms Inn the two clubs agreed to merge to form the Huddersfield Cricket and Athletics Club; the motion was passed by 55 votes to 37. The football section stayed at Rifle Field, but alterations made in the summer of 1878 meant that rugby could begin at the start of the 1878–79 season with the visit of Manchester Rangers on 2 November; the new ground would become the club's home for 114 years and would provide the club's famous "Fartown" nickname. In 1895 the club were founder members of the Northern Rugby Football Union; the club has seen many ups and downs in its long history, but for the first 60 years of rugby league it was one of the powerhouses of the game, with only Wigan as rivals in terms of trophies won.
Harold Wagstaff was only fifteen years and one hundred and seventy-five days old when he played his first match for Huddersfield, against Bramley in November 1906. At the time, he was the youngest first-team player the game had seen, he had signed on for a £5 signing-on fee. Huddersfield beat the touring 1908–09 Kangaroos 5–3, they were impressed enough with stand-off Albert Rosenfeld to sign him up that evening along with Australian Dual Code International Pat Walsh one of the best forwards of the Kangaroos. Rosenfeld played his first game against Broughton Rangers on 11 September 1909; the club's golden period came around the time of the First World War. The club was able to assemble a team of players from across the British Empire who swept all before them. Known as "The Team of All Talents", they were led by Harold Wagstaff and are still regarded as one of the finest football teams to have played. In the five years leading up to the First World War they won 13 trophies. Two members of the team, centre Harold Wagstaff and wing Albert Rosenfeld were honoured by inclusion in the original Rugby League Hall of Fame.
They were joined by the Cumberland second row Douglas Clark. Of just seventeen players to be elected to the Hall of Fame, no fewe
Anthony Minichiello is an Australian former professional rugby league footballer who captained the Sydney Roosters in the National Rugby League, retired having set records for most games and most tries in the club's history. An Australia and Italy international as well as a New South Wales State of Origin representative wing turned fullback, he played his entire career with the Roosters, with whom he won the 2002 and 2013 NRL Premierships, before retiring at the conclusion of the club's 2014 campaign. Minichiello won the Golden Boot Award for international player of the year in 2005, is the brother of fellow Italian international, Mark Minichiello. Minichiello was born in Liverpool in Australia. Minichiello began playing rugby league for East Valley United. Minichiello attended All Saints Catholic Senior College. At a young age, he was spotted by Roosters recruitment officer, rugby league Immortal Arthur Beetson, who signed him up to the foundation club. In 1999 he played for Italy in the inaugural Mediterranean Cup.
On 4 August 2014 he announced his retirement at the end of the season After a stint in the lower grades, Minichiello made his NRL debut at the age of 19 in the Roosters' Round 4 clash on 25 February 2000 at the Aussie Stadium against the Canterbury Bulldogs. This made him the 994th first grader to play for the Roosters, he tasted the bitterness of defeat at the end of his debut year in the Roosters' loss to the Brisbane Broncos in the 2000 NRL Grand Final. By midway through his second season, he had proven himself worthy of representative football when he was selected to play for City Origin in the 2001 City vs Country Origin match against Country Origin. After scoring 16 tries during the 2002 NRL season, Minichiello played on the wing for the Roosters in their 2002 NRL Grand Final win over the New Zealand Warriors, he was part of the successful Roosters team that took out the 2003 World Club Challenge against 2002 Super League champions, St. Helens. With Mini playing fullback, the Roosters accounted for Saints 38–0 at the Reebok Stadium in Bolton, England in front of 19,807 fans.
For the first three seasons of his career Mini played on the wing for the Roosters, but the retirement of Luke Phillips following the 2002 NRL Grand Final prompted then-Roosters coach Ricky Stuart to move Minichiello to fullback. His move to fullback coincided with some of the Roosters' best football for the early part of the new millennium, it saw him become an automatic selection for both NSW and Australia for the next few seasons. With the help of the New Zealand former Warriors fullback and newly appointed Roosters Premier League coach Ivan Cleary, Mini would become a vital part of the Roosters attack, his great performance in his new position soon paid off with selection for City in the 2003 City vs Country Origin match and for New South Wales in the 2003 State of Origin series, went on to play in his 100th NRL game for the Roosters in the first Preliminary Final of the 2003 NRL Finals Series. He was declared Man of the Match in the Roosters 28–18 victory over the Bulldogs; the Roosters subsequently lost the 2003 NRL Grand Final to the Penrith Panthers, in which Minichiello played at fullback.
Minichiello ran 4,571 metres with the ball in 2003, more than any other player in the competition. After that he was selected to go on the successful 2003 Kangaroo tour in which Australia defeated their oldest rivals Great Britain 3–0 to retain The Ashes. Mini played on the wing for the Kangaroos in all three tests due to the presence of Brisbane Broncos fullback Darren Lockyer, the captain of the Kangaroos. In 2004, Minichiello was again selected to play for New South Wales but just five days out from Game I he was sacked for taking a mobile telephone out contrary to team instructions during a wild bonding session; however he fought his way back into the squad and help steered New South Wales to its second series victory. He was named the Dally M Fullback of the Year in the 2004 NRL season, where he scored a career best 18 tries for the season, he won the Harry Sunderland Medal as the player's player of the year. Mini went on to play at fullback for the Roosters in their 16–13 loss to the Bulldogs in the 2004 NRL Grand Final.
It was the Roosters third Grand Final loss in four games since 2000. Minichiello was selected in the Australian team to go and compete in the end of season 2004 Rugby League Tri-Nations tournament. In the final against Great Britain he played at fullback and scored two tries in the Kangaroos' 44–4 victory. Another great season followed in 2005, where Minichiello's performances at fullback for NSW resulted in him winning the Wally Lewis Medal for player of the 2005 State of Origin series; the year was capped off with him winning the Harry Sunderland Medal again as the man of the 2005 Rugby League Tri-Nations tournament, despite New Zealand causing a boil over by defeating Australia 24–0 in the Final at Elland Road in Leeds. The game would prove to be Anthony Minichiello's 18th and final test for Australia, he would go on to win the 2005 Golden Boot Award as the international player of the year. One of the longest injury/suspension free period of any player in the modern era came to end in Round 6, 2006.
A back injury, first sustained in Roosters' Round 3 clash on 26 March 2006 against the Canberra Raiders, that required surgery ruled Minichiello out for the remainder of season. His back injury allowed several younger fullbacks to stake claims for the Australian jersey Brisbane Broncos fullback Karmichael Hunt. Minichiello's downfall from injury coincided with the Roosters' decline in form, with the team finishing secon