Matthew James Hodgson

  • 11Caps
  • 841Wallaby Number
  • 40Age
PositionFlanker
Date Of Birth24 June 1981
Place Of BirthSydney
SchoolSt. Edwards College, Gosford
Debut ClubEastern Suburbs (Sydney)
Other ClubsEastwood, Manly, Palmyra (W.A.), Waneroo (W.A.)
ProvinceWestern Force
Other ProvinceNSW
Debut Test Match2010 Wallabies v Fiji, Canberra
Final Test Match2014 Wallabies v France, 4th Test Paris

Biography

There has arguably been no more loyal a servant to rugby in Australia than Matt Hodgson. Raised on the New South Wales central coast Hodgson played in the back-line for the Avoca Beach Sharks until age 16. He was drafted by the Waratahs before he turned 18 only to be redeveloped as a flanker. That decision was a masterstroke as Hodgson quickly became one of the most formidable loose forwards in the game.

In 2002 he was to chosen as a flanker for the inaugural IRB U21s Junior World Championship tournament in South Africa before he won a place in the national 7s side for the IRB World Series in 2004. Hodgson then joined the Western Force for their 2006 foundation season of Super Rugby and despite five stellar seasons for the fledgling franchise it was not until 2010 that he was rewarded with a Test debut, against Fiji in Canberra.

In 2014 his leadership qualities were truly recognised when he became just the second indigenous Australian, after Mark Ella, to captain the Wallabies in the uncapped Spring Tour match against the Barbarians at Twickenham.

In 2017, Hodgson ended a decorated 140 game Super Rugby career on a deserved high when, in the final play of the game, he kicked his lone career penalty goal as the Force thumped New South Wales 40-11.

Highlights

2002

Selected in the Australian squad for the inaugural IRB U21s Junior World Championship tournament in South Africa.

2003/04

Represented Australia in the IRB Sevens World Series.

2010

Hodgson won his first Test cap off the bench when he replaced David Pocock at openside flanker in the 49-3 victory over Fiji at Canberra Stadium. He won three more caps over the course of the season including one, against Italy, on the end-of-season Spring Tour.

2011

Hodgson earned his first Test cap in a run-on XV when selected at No.7 in the 23-32 loss to Samoa in Sydney. He then came on as a replacement a week later in the 39-20, 1st Test victory over South Africa in Sydney. Hodgson won a late call-up to Australia’s Rugby World Cup squad after No.8 Wycliff Palu strained a hamstring in the pool game against the U.S.A. but he was not picked in a match day 23 during the tournament’s finals stage.

2014

He returned to the national squad under Michael Cheika and picked up five caps, each won off the bench, in his final year of international rugby.

Matthew James Hodgson