Johnathan Thurston - NRL

Partner’s name: Sam
Children’s names: Frankie Louise (5), Charlie Grace (3), Lillie Rose (1)
Charity of choice: Mark Hughes Foundation

When you talk modern day superstars of rugby league, Johnathan Thurston’s name is invariably at the top of the list. The man regarded simply as JT is now in the final year of his career, but he has put together a resume equal to the greats of the game in any era. The Cowboys and Queensland star has won two premierships, four Dally M Player of the Year titles, three Golden Boot awards as the game’s best player, the 2015 Clive Churchill Medal as he led the Cowboys to the premiership, five man of the match awards in Origin from a record 36 games in succession. In all, JT has played 37 Origins and 39 Tests for the Kangaroos. Through it all, his family have shared his achievements and JT is looking forward to spending time with his girls in retirement. “I love being a dad,” he said. “There is nothing more important to me than being the best husband and father I can be. I try to be as active and involved in the girls’ lives as I can when I’m home.” His wife Sam went onto say “He is smitten with the girls and totally devoted to them. He is hands on and wants to be involved in whatever they’re doing, which is one of the many reasons why he is such a great dad.”

How hard is it spending time away from the girls during the season? It’s really hard, especially now the girls are old enough to understand and get upset when I leave. But it’s almost worth it from all the cuddles I get when I arrive home! - Johnathan

What’s your favourite activity with the girls? I try to be as active as I can in their lives. I take them ice skating, to hockey, to gymnastics … all their little activities! But my favourite would probably be taking them for a bike ride. - Johnathan

Are you able to get involved in the kids’ school or community sport? Yeah, I try to get to all of Frankie’s school events and take her to as many of her sporting events as possible. I will probably get more involved once I retire from football. I’d love to coach one of their teams one day. - Johnathan

How do you find the nappy changes? I’m an expert! It’s not my favourite thing in the world but I do it! - Johnathan

I guess you've seen your partner in a whole new light? She's amazing; she runs our household, knows all of our schedules and makes sure everyone is well loved and cared for. Mums are amazing! - Johnathan

What's been the toughest thing to adjust to? The early mornings. There is no more sleeping in past 6am! - Johnathan

What is his best asset as a father? That would be his easy going and fun loving nature. - Sam

How hard is it when he has to be away from home for so long? We’re used to it. It’s part of his job and he gets to be home so much more during the week so it pays off. I found it tougher during the rep season when he was away for weeks at a time. - Sam

What does he do to help at home? He does it all! If he is home, he wants to be the one to feed the girls, bath them and put them to bed! - Sam

 

Sports Dad of the Year 2018
 
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