Stephen Kearney

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Stephen Kearney
Stephen Kearney 2.jpg
Personal information
Full nameStephen Peter Kearney
Born (1972-06-11) 11 June 1972 (age 47)
Paraparaumu, Wellington, New Zealand
Height191 cm (6 ft 3 in)
Weight103 kg (16 st 3 lb)
Playing information
PositionSecond-row
Club
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1991 Randwick Kingfishers
1992–94 Western Suburbs 46 6 0 0 24
1995–98 Auckland Warriors 79 11 0 0 44
1999–04 Melbourne Storm 139 20 0 0 80
2005 Hull F.C. 24 5 0 0 20
Total 288 42 0 0 168
Representative
Years Team Pld T G FG P
1991 Wellington 7 0 0 0 0
1993–04 New Zealand 45 9 0 0 36
Coaching information
Club
Years Team Gms W D L W%
2011–12 Parramatta Eels 42 10 1 31 24
2017– New Zealand Warriors 73 31 1 41 42
Total 115 41 2 72 36
Representative
Years Team Gms W D L W%
2008–16 New Zealand 42 23 1 18 55
As of 21 September 2019
Source: [1][2]

Stephen Peter Kearney, ONZM (born 11 June 1972) is a New Zealand professional rugby league football coach who is the head coach of the New Zealand Warriors in the NRL and a former player.

A New Zealand national captain and second-row forward, Kearney's club football career, which spanned from the early 1990s to the mid-2000s, was played for the Randwick Kingfishers, Western Suburbs Magpies, Auckland Warriors, Melbourne Storm (with whom he won the 1999 NRL Premiership), and Hull F.C. (with whom he won the 2005 Challenge Cup).

Kearney was previously the head coach of the New Zealand, with whom he won the 2008 World Cup and 2011 Four Nations tournaments, he also previously coached the Parramatta Eels in the National Rugby League.

Background[edit]

Kearney was born in Paraparaumu, Wellington, New Zealand.

Playing career[edit]

A Kapiti Bears junior, Kearney played for the Junior Kiwis between 1989 and 1991, becoming the side's captain for the 1991 series against Great Britain, he made his senior début in 1991 for the Randwick Kingfishers and also played for Wellington that year. Randwick lost the Wellington Rugby League Grand Final 6-14 to the Wainuiomata Lions.[3]

Turning professional he moved to Australia to play for the Western Suburbs Magpies in 1992 in what is now the NSWRL Premiership. In 1993 he became the New Zealand national rugby league team' youngest test captain, aged 21,[4] he left the Magpies at the end of 1994, returning home to play for the Auckland Warriors in their inaugural season. At the end of that season he traveled to England to represent New Zealand in the 1995 World Cup, he missed the first test match against a re-unified Australian team in 1998 due to suspension.[5] Kearney remained a Warrior until 1998, when he moved to Australia to join the Melbourne Storm. In the Melbourne club's second ever season Kearney played at second-row forward in their victory in the 1999 NRL Grand Final.[6] Kearney was selected for the New Zealand team to compete in the end of season 1999 Rugby League Tri-Nations tournament. In the final against Australia he played at second-row forward in the Kiwis' 22-20 loss.

Having won the 1999 Premiership, the Melbourne Storm traveled to England to contest the 2000 World Club Challenge against Super League Champions St Helens R.F.C., with Kearney playing at second-row forward in the victory. In 2002 Kearney missed the series-deciding match against Great Britain as he had to rush back home to Melbourne to be with his sick five-year-old daughter, who needed emergency surgery.[7] While captaining the Storm in 2004, Kearney became the first New Zealand footballer to play 250 Australian first-grade matches,[8] he also played his last test match for the Kiwis in 2004, in a game that marked the début of Sonny Bill Williams.[9] Kearney finished his playing career with English club Hull F.C. in the Super League competition, playing in their 2005 Challenge Cup-winning side.[3]

Coaching career[edit]

In 2006 Kearney retired from playing and returned to Australia to take up a role as assistant coach at his old club, the Melbourne Storm, under Craig Bellamy. In 2008 Kearney was appointed as the New Zealand national rugby league team' head coach on a two-year contract.[10]

Kearney (with assistant Wayne Bennett) coached the Kiwis to their first World Cup series win. On 22 November 2008, they defeated Australia 34–20 in the final, at Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane.[11] Following this achievement, he was made an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit in the Queen's Birthday honours list.[12]

Kearney in 2008

For the 2010 Anzac Test, Kearney coached New Zealand in their loss against Australia. In the 2010 post-season Kearney was announced as Daniel Anderson's replacement as head coach of the Parramatta Eels for three years beginning in 2011. Shortly after that, he took the Kiwis to victory in the 2010 Four Nations Final against Australia.

In 2011 he failed to coach the Parramatta NRL team to any success, with the Eels achieving just 6 wins and 1 draw in 24 matches, and only just missing out on the wooden spoon when they beat the Gold Coast Titans in the last game of the regular season.

Things didn't get any better for Kearney in the 2012 NRL season. With the Eels struggling in last place on the NRL ladder after 16 rounds, Melbourne Storm's inaugural coach, and two time premiership winning coach Chris Anderson was appointed as a mentor to Stephen Kearney to help him turn the club's fortunes around;[13] however this did not eventuate and Kearney was forced to resign only three rounds later on 20 July, after achieving only 3 wins from 19 matches in the season.[14] He left the Eels with just 10 wins from 42 matches, a very poor winning percentage of 24 percent.

In October 2012 Kearney signed 2 years as Brisbane Broncos assistant coach from 2013.

In November 2014, Kearney guided New Zealand to their second Four Nations championship, defeating Australia 22-18 in the final.

In March 2015, Kearney signed a new deal to remain as coach of the Kiwis until the conclusion of the 2017 Rugby League World Cup.[15]

At the end of 2015, his 23 test wins as coach and five wins over Australia is the most out of any that has coached New Zealand in the past,[16] in stark contrast to his record as an NRL head coach.

On 12 September 2016, Kearney stepped down from his role as coach of New Zealand after accepting a return to head coaching in the NRL as coach of the New Zealand Warriors on a three-year deal.[17][18]

In his first season coaching the Warriors, 2017, the team finished 13th on the table, after managing only 7 wins from their 24 games, a win percentage of 29%.

In 2018, however, Kearney's season started brightly, with the club winning their first 5 matches of the season, for the first time in the club's history.[19] Slipping slowly down the ladder through the season, from starting right at the top, they finally secured eighth spot, with 15 wins out of 24, a 62% win percentage, they then crashed out of their first finals match since 2011 with a 27-12 loss to the Penrith Panthers at ANZ Stadium in Sydney.[20]

At the halfway point of the 2019 season, Kearney's Warriors had 4 wins from 12 starts, a 33% win percentage. During the ongoing 2019 season Kearny has earned the name Stephen Cryney due to repeated rants about refereeing instead of fronting up and admitting his team is bad and he can't actually coach.

Kiwis coaching record[edit]

Opponent Played Won Drew Lost Win Ratio (%)
 Australia 20 5 1 14 25.00
 England 10 6 0 4 60.00
 Papua New Guinea 3 3 0 0 100
 Tonga 2 2 0 0 100
 France 2 2 0 0 100
 Samoa 3 3 0 0 100
 Wales 1 1 0 0 100
 Scotland 1 1 0 0 100
TOTAL 42 23 1 18 54.76
World Cup record
Year Round Position GP W L D
Australia 2008 Champions 1/10 5 4 1 0
England/Wales 2013 Second place 2/14 6 5 1 0
Total 1 Title 1/2 11 9 2 0
Four Nations record
Year Round Position GP W L D
England/France 2009 Third place 3/4 3 1 1 1
Australia/New Zealand 2010 Champions 1/4 4 3 1 0
England/Wales 2011 Third place 3/4 3 1 2 0
Australia/New Zealand 2014 Champions 1/4 4 4 0 0
Total 2 Titles 2/4 14 9 4 1
Anzac Test
Year Round Position GP W L D
2008 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2009 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2010 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2011 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2012 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2013 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2014 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2015 Anzac Test Won 1/2 1 1 0 0
2016 Anzac Test Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
Total 1 Title 1/9 9 1 8 0
Baskerville Shield record
Year Round Position GP W L D
2015 Lost 1/2 3 1 2 0
Total - 0/1 3 1 2 0
Other Test matches
Year Round Position GP W L D
2008 Won 1/2 1 1 0 0
2009 Won 1/2 1 1 0 0
2010 Won 1/2 1 1 0 0
2011 Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2012 Lost 2/2 1 0 1 0
2013 Won 1/2 1 1 0 0
Total 4 Wins 4/6 6 4 2 0

Legacy[edit]

In 2012 Kearney was named as one of the New Zealand Rugby League's Legends of League.[21] Born in Wellington, he was also named[when?] in the Wellington Rugby League's Team of the Century.[citation needed]

References[edit]

  1. ^ RLP playing
  2. ^ RLP coaching
  3. ^ a b Team of Century Week 8 Wellington Rugby League
  4. ^ Hadfield, Dave (3 November 1993). "Rugby League: Kiwis drop Freeman". The Independent. London.
  5. ^ Sterling, Peter (23 April 1998). "Out of this world". Newcastle Herald. Fairfax Digital. p. 3. Retrieved 6 October 2009.
  6. ^ Cockerill, Ian (3 October 1999). "Eye of the Storm". The Sunday Age. p. 4. Retrieved 6 October 2009.
  7. ^ "Sympathy from Brits" 22 November 2002 New Zealand City
  8. ^ "Rugby League: Test veteran first New Zealander to 250-match mark". The New Zealand Herald. 29 May 2004. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  9. ^ SBW named to start for Kiwis, ONE Sport, dated 26 October 2013.
  10. ^ "New Zealand put faith in Kearney". BBC Sport. 11 February 2008. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  11. ^ "New Zealand humble Kangaroos in World Cup final in Brisbane". Fox Sports News (Australia). 22 November 2008. Archived from the original on 30 December 2012. Retrieved 23 November 2008.
  12. ^ "Leading sports stars lauded". The New Zealand Herald. 1 June 2009. Retrieved 13 November 2011.
  13. ^ "Chris Anderson to help Stephen Kearney at Parramatta Eels". The Australian. 29 June 2012. Retrieved 20 July 2012.
  14. ^ "My best not good enough: Stephen Kearney". The Daily Telegraph. 20 July 2012. Retrieved 20 July 2012.
  15. ^ "New contract for Kiwis coach Kearney". nz.sports.yahoo.com. 27 March 2015.
  16. ^ "League: King Kearney looks to build lasting Kiwis empire". nzherald.co.nz. 22 November 2015. Retrieved 22 July 2016.
  17. ^ "Kearney new Vodafone Warriors head coach". warriors.kiwi. 13 September 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  18. ^ "Stephen Kearney backs David Kidwell to take over Kiwis coaching duties". tvnz. 13 September 2016. Retrieved 13 September 2016.
  19. ^ "Warriors create history with miracle comeback". stuff.co.nz. 24 March 2018. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  20. ^ "NRL 2018 finals: Panthers power on as Warriors bow out". Foxsports. 8 September 2018. Retrieved 8 June 2019.
  21. ^ Kiwis Coach One of Three New Legends of League Named nzrl.co.nz, 30 October 2012

External links[edit]

Preceded by
Gary Kemble
Coach
New Zealand national rugby league team

2008-16
Succeeded by
David Kidwell
Preceded by
Daniel Anderson
Coach
Parramatta Eels

2011-12
Succeeded by
Ricky Stuart
Preceded by
Andrew McFadden
Coach
New Zealand Warriors

2017-present
Succeeded by
{{{after}}}