John Eales is one of Australia’s all-time rugby greats. He took part in two successful World Cup campaigns, captained the Wallabies in memorable victories including the 1999 World Cup, led Australia through three Bledisloe Cup series wins and two successful seasons of Tri-Nations fixtures.
He also led the Wallabies to the first-ever defeat of the British and Irish Lions. In his career, John played 20 tests against the All Blacks winning 11 of them. In that time, he was captain for 11 of those tests against the All Blacks, winning six, including six of his last seven tests against them.
Of his incredible career and subsequent retirement, Australian Prime Minister John Howard stated:
I wish to record my admiration for the magnificent contribution that John Eales has made to the game of rugby, and to Australian and international sport. John Eales has been an inspirational leader, an outstanding and courageous player, and an example to all in the way he has conducted himself on and off the field.
Honours & Achievements
- 1999 - Was made a Member of the Order of Australia (AM) for his services to the sport of rugby
- 2001 - Inducted into the Australian Institute of Sports ‘Best of the Best’, celebrating high performance in sport.
- 2003 - Inducted into the Sport Australia Hall of Fame, designed to promote and recognise the achievements of incredible Australian athletes.
- 2007 - Inducted into the International Rugby Board Hall of Fame
- 2011 - Inducted into the Wallaby Hall of Fame, 22nd Inductee
- 2020 - Elevated to Legend of Australian Sport, the country's most prestigious honour for athletes