Rugby league players cross over to rugby union all the time, at all levels of the game, and vice versa. Wherever the opportunity is, that’s where the player will be.
With the NRL’s State of Origin creeping up to our doorstep, and selection as always proving a topical issue, let’s take a look at a few union players who could’ve gone down the other path and possibly been SOO representatives in Rugby League.
Kurtley Beale (Mount Druitt, New South Wales)
Kurtley Beale is one of the most talked about rugby players on the planet right now, as the ink still dries on his mega contract with Wasps. However, he could’ve easily been lining up for the NSW Blues next week.
Beale played his junior footy with the Western City Tigers rugby league team based in his hometown of Mount Druitt, New South Wales, before gaining a scholarship to prestigious private school St. Josephs College in Hunters Hill.
He was training with the Waratahs by the age of 15, signed his first contract at 16 and was training with Australia by 17, on the special invitation of then-coach John Connelly.
Tevita Kuridrani (Corinda, Queensland)
Tevita Kuridrani’s selection for the Queensland Maroons would create a stink that has hung over the Queenslanders for a long time now, but nevertheless, he is eligible for them.
He played both codes as a young lad growing up in Corinda, and is related to greats from both codes, such as Nemani Nadolo, Noa Nadruku and Lote Tuqiri.
Ultimately, a top season with University of Queensland in 2009 saw him go down the path of union, and he has since played 57 times for the ACT Brumbies and 31 times for Australia.