Partner’s name: Zoe
Child’s name: Benjamin Fox 1

Since bursting onto the scene as a precocious teenager in 2003, Benji has been one of the most popular players in the NRL. There wouldn’t be a kid in the past 16 years who hasn’t practiced a trademark Benji side step, flick pass or no look pass in their backyard such has been Benji’s influence. A 2005 grand final winner with the Wests Tigers, a game best remembered not only for the Tigers’ unlikely triumph, but Benji’s flick pass, the one time wonderkid has now played more than 300 NRL games. The kid who grew up before our eyes is now a 34-year-old father, who lives for his son Fox. “Fox has a very bubbly personality and is really starting to develop his language and speaks really well,” Benji said. “I love his personality! He is such a happy boy and makes me smile every day. I feel so lucky to be his dad.” His wife Zoe went onto say Benji’s love and dedication to Fox is more than an asset. It’s just the way he is. He loves Fox more than I’ve ever seen a man love a child and is so thoughtful, funny and caring. He is always singing and playing the guitar to Fox.

How hard is it spending time away from the family during the season? It’s getting harder and harder. Being away is the worst part of my job because I miss him so much. We FaceTime every day when he wakes up and every night before he goes to bed. It’s awesome because he is really starting to communicate and interact and we have such a great time together. - Benji

At home do you still have a regular routine with Fox? Routine is something Zoe and I are big on. I enforce it a lot of the time. I have a lot of home duties but my fav is bath time and bed time. I bath him every night and put him to bed every night. The cuddles just before sleep time are the best. - Benji

What is your favourite activity with Fox? I love bath time but we love getting out of the house together like going to our local cafe for a babyccino and coffee and because he is so social he loves talking and interacting with other people . We also both love guitar time where I just play guitar and we sing songs. He loves music. - Benji

Do you have any memorable moments with Fox at this early stage? Yeah of course. Some big ones are always firsts. Like when he first walked was an amazing memory …  I actually cried! Also when he said mum for the first time, because he said dad first I felt bad so I said Mum every day to him a hundred times until he could say Mum.  I’m obviously the fav though! - Benji

What’s the best part about being a dad? Everything! I love all of it. Fox is by far the best thing that has ever happened to me. - Benji

On game day, do you like to relax with the family or is there a set routine? When I am home on game day that preparation doesn’t start until I leave home to drive to the game. Dad duties still have to be done no matter what day it is. Plus I love it! - Benji

What’s Benji’s best asset as a dad? He does it all as well as look after me! When we are out in public or out at dinner, he looks after Fox. He’s so proud of Fox and loves to push him in the pram and feed him. I’m beyond grateful for the breaks he gives me. - Zoe

Sports Dad of the Year 2019
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