BREAKING NEWS: Jarrod Croker fights back tears as the Canberra Raiders star receives the hero’s welcome in his 300th NRL game
- Jarrod Croker fought back tears as he played his 300th NRL game
- The Canberra star was received like a hero in Canberra
- Croker has braved numerous career-threatening injuries
Jarrod Croker choked back tears as the Canberra star received a thunderous ovation in his 300th NRL game.
Croker, who is recovering from numerous career-threatening injuries, took to the pitch again on Friday night to a packed house at GIO Stadium, who expressed their admiration for the Raiders star.
Croker, who was walking hand-in-hand with his son Rory, was visibly touched by his welcome and had to calm himself before kick-off.
He is only the 48th NRL player to reach that milestone, the 18th player to do so with a single club and only the second Raiders player to reach 300 games.
Raiders coach Ricky Stuart admitted this week that he had advised Croker to resign after witnessing first-hand the damage the player’s body was caused by injuries.
Canberra Raiders star Jarrod Croker fought back tears on his 300th appearance
The veteran overcame numerous career-threatening injuries to reach this milestone
Croker was pictured with his wife Brittney and children Rory and Tate on Friday night
“Injury after injury is the real killer in the NRL.” So he wasn’t prepared for what I had to say. “I told him I thought he should retire,” Stuart wrote in his column news corp.
“He didn’t play at the level of the Jarrod I knew and I didn’t want him to do poorly and be remembered at the end of his career for performances that might overshadow all the other memories he should have been remembered for .”
“I told him I was trying to protect Jarrod from Jarrod.”
Needless to say, Croker didn’t heed his coach’s advice.
“He didn’t want to know about it, so I told him to go away and think about it.” I told him I didn’t want to be the coach who picked him in second grade. “I thought he deserved better for all he gave,” Stuart wrote.
‘I have understood. He wanted to keep playing. I also told him that I could not guarantee that he would be selected, but that from now on his selection would be based solely on merit.
‘He understood that and said even if he could just help the younger boys in the NSW Cup he would love to do that but he wanted the chance.’ Again he was all for the shirt.’