Mark Allan Gerrard
- 797Wallaby Number
Mark Gerrard was an immensely talented utility back with a prodigious boot and a strong sporting family pedigree. Of Tongan heritage, Gerrard was brother to Australian netball start Mo’onia Gerrard (who subsequently married Wallaby #854 Dave Dennis) and cousin to Wycliff Palu (Wallaby #812).
Gerrard played rugby league at Narrabeen Sports High School before he made a successful switch to the 15-man code and won selection for Australian Schools in both 1999 and 2000. He was the first Australian to be signed straight from school on a Super Rugby contract and went on to earn multiple aged representation selections.
Gerrard debuted with New South Wales in 2002 but only managed to win two caps. He signed with the ACT Brumbies for the 2003 season and made his debut against the Sharks in Durban. A year later Gerard played in the Brumbies title winning side and scored three well taken tries in the final.
Injury delayed higher honours until 2005 when he made his Test debut against Italy in Melbourne. Gerrard won 23 caps through to the 2007 Rugby World Cup before he suffered a devastating knee injury in the pool game against Japan.
He left Australia for two seasons with Japan’s NTT Communications Shining Arcs before he signed for the 2011 Super Rugby season with the Melbourne Rebels. Gerrard won the last of his 24 caps that year in the shock loss to Samoa in Sydney.
1999 Represented Australian Schools against New Zealand Schools.
2000 Represented Australian Schools against Ireland Schools and New Zealand Schools.
2001 Represented Australian U19s& Australia U21s.
2002 Selected in the Australian squad for the inaugural IRB U21s Junior World Championship tournament in South Africa.
2003 Selected in the Australian squad for the second-annual IRB U21 Rugby World Championships in England.
2005 Gerrard won his first Test cap off the bench when he replaced Wendell Sailor on the right wing in the 69-21 thumping of Italy in Melbourne. He made the run-on XV for the first time when picked at No.14 in the 13-30, 1st Test loss to New Zealand in Sydney. Gerrard scored his first Test try in the 24-34, 2nd Test loss to New Zealand in Auckland. He tallied 7 caps over the season, three of which were won on the end-of-season Spring Tour.
2006 He earned a career high 11 caps over the course of the 13 Test season and finished the year as the Wallabies’ top try scorer (7).
2007 Gerrard played five Tests and was selected to his first Rugby World Cup. His lone game of the tournament was as a replacement against Japan in Lyon. Gerrard was on the field for no more than a minute when he ruptured the medial ligament in his left knee, an injury that abruptly ended his tournament.
2011 Gerrard won his final cap at fullback in the season opening 23-32 loss to Samoa in Sydney.