Michael Cameron Brial
- 712Wallaby Number
Michael Brial was a confrontational backrower who rarely took a backward step during his time with Eastern Suburbs, New South Wales and Australia.
Raised in the north-west New South Wales community of Narrabri, Brial grew up playing rugby league during his time at Narrabri High School. At the age of 14 Brial followed his brother Brenden to the Narrabri Blue Boars at the urging of a family friend and he filled in as a winger for the U19s. The younger Brial clearly took the game like a duck to water as he went on to represent Central North in the U14s, U16s and U19s.
In 1986 Narrabri HS entered a rugby team into the State-wide U16s Wybird Shield competition and won. A year later Brial was selected in the Australian U17s squad to tour New Zealand. He made his debut for New South Wales in 1992 against Wellington at Athletic Park and from there won a spot on the Wallabies' end-of-season tour to Ireland and Wales but was not capped. Twelve months on he toured again, this time to North America and France, and made his Test debut against France in Bordeaux. In 1996 Brial cemented a spot in the Test team and earned ten caps, mostly at No.8.
Michael Brial played 13 Tests for Australia in his five-year international career.
Represented Australian U17s on their tour to New Zealand.
Represented the AIS Australian U21s against the New Zealand Colts.
Represented the AIS Australian U21s against New Zealand U21s.
Brial won his first Test cap off the bench when he replaced Ilie Tabua at blindside flanker in the 1st Test 13-16 loss to France in Bordeaux. A week later he made his run-on XV debut at No.6 in the 24-3, 2nd Test victory in Paris.
Brial played 10 Tests, eight as the starting No.8 and one as the run-on blindside flanker. He scored his first Test try in the 28-19 win over Wales in Cardiff.
Brial won his final Test cap at No.8 in the 18-33, 2nd Test loss to New Zealand in Melbourne. He represented Australia at the Sevens Rugby World Cup in Hong Kong.