Stepping up as the NSW Waratahs Team Captain in 2016, Michael Hooper once again proved why he is renowned as one of the worlds most talented and consistent rugby players in 2016.
Hooper played in all 80 minutes of every single match for the NSW Waratahs in 2016, and all but one for the Wallabies in a year that saw him score four tries for his home state and three for his country, earning him a number of Man of the Match performances. He now has over 60 points to his name for Australia and over 50 for NSW.
At just 25-years-of-age, Hooper once again finished the year with a lengthy list of well-deserved accolades, including his fourth consecutive Matthew Burke Cup as the Waratahs’ Players’ Player, NSW Waratahs Member’s Choice, his second John Eales Medal, Australia’s Choice Wallaby of the Year and the Rugby Union Players’ Association (RUPA) Wallaby of the Year.
It took Hooper just over 12 months in Wallaby Gold to win his first John Eales Medal itself in 2013, the same year he was granted the title as Australia’s Super Rugby Player of the Year.
In 2014 he was recognised, together with teammate Israel Folau, as the joint winner of Super Rugby Player of the Year in a season that saw him named in the run-on side for the Waratahs during their Super Rugby Championship title winning campaign.
It was a year that also saw Hooper first take the reins as Captain of both the Waratahs and the Wallabies, following injuries to David Dennis and Stephen Moore respectively. He became the youngest Wallabies captain since 1947, serving as skipper in the second and third tests in the three-Test June international series against France.
A product of the Manly Marlins, Hooper made his Super Rugby debut for the Brumbies in 2010, replacing Wallabies legend George Smith.
A former pupil at Chatswood’s St Pius X College, Michael grew up in the northern beaches suburb of Collaroy. He is an ambassador for the White Knight Foundation, which aims to provide support for people who are victims of, or affected by, unprovoked violence.
Last updated: 21/12/16