Courageous rugby league legend, motivational speaker
Brent Tate is a former professional rugby league footballer widely respected for his never-say-die attitude and a decorated and courageous career. An Australia national and Queensland State of Origin representative three-quarter back, Brent began his career at Brisbane in 2001 and played in the National Rugby League for the Brisbane Broncos (with whom he won the 2006 NRL Premiership), the New Zealand Warriors and the North Queensland Cowboys.
In 2004, Brent thought his career was going to be over due to pain and numbness from a recurrent nerve problem in his neck but he didn’t want to quit and looked on his footy career as an ongoing fight. Despite a series of severe injuries, he kept fighting back and ended up playing the last decade of his career in a neck brace.
He was a member of the 2006, 2007, 2008, 2012 and 2013 State of Origin series-winning Queensland sides, as well as the 2008 and 2013 World Cup Australian sides.
In 2013, Brent Tate was named the winner of the Ron McAuliffe Medal awarded to each year’s State of Origin Queensland player of the series.
In June 2014, a knee injury sustained during Origin II, his 23rd game playing for Queensland, finally ended Brent’s career after more than a decade of battling crippling injuries. He had endured 16 operations: four knee reconstructions, nine ankle operations, major surgeries to his shoulder, groin and throat, and two arthroscopies on his knee.
During his career Brent played 229 NRL games, including 23 State of Origin appearances and 26 Test caps.
Brent Tate’s autobiography, Iron Will, was published in July 2015 and reveals the real story behind his leaving the Broncos, his honest ratings of the players he played with and against, and how he really felt the moment he knew his career was over.
Brent Tate’s commitment and ability to overcome adversity has never been in question and he is regarded as one of the toughest players the NRL has ever seen. In fact, in 2013 The Daily Telegraph described him as “rugby league’s most inspirational player” while Mal Meninga more recently described him as “one of the toughest and most inspiring players to have ever played rugby league”.