Former Bulldogs and Sharks NRL star Michael Ennis is one of the exciting names to join Sydney Catholic Schools’ Sports Council.
As an NRL premiership winner and New South Wales State of Origin representative, Michael Ennis has plenty to be proud about in his rugby league career.
And Mr Ennis also wants to one day look back proudly at his time with Sydney Catholic Schools’ (SCS) newly formed Sports Council.
The former Bulldogs and Sharks star is one of three representatives from outside SCS to join the Council and lend their expertise.
“I never like looking too far ahead but I suppose I’d like to get to a position where we can all as a group go ‘Well look what we’ve been able to create. Look what opportunities we’ve been able to further and extend and give the kids’,” Mr Ennis said.
Familiar face on and off the field
Mr Ennis has been a well-known face to rugby league supporters since making his first grade debut for the Newcastle Knights in 2003.
Playing as a hooker, a demanding position, he showed great longevity to continue his career for another 13 seasons, finishing with 273 NRL games.
That included stops at four other clubs: the Brisbane Broncos, St George Illawarra Dragons, Canterbury Bulldogs and Cronulla Sharks.
He also achieved representative honours, playing eight games in the prestigious State of Origin series for New South Wales against Queensland.
Mr Ennis played his final NRL game in 2016, going out in style with a Grand Final win for Cronulla, and has stayed busy as an analyst for the Fox League channel.
Mr Ennis retired to spend time with his family and didn’t need to look far from home for a reason to join SCS’ Sports Council.
“Obviously I’m highly passionate about sport and my kids have been through the Catholic system,” he said. “I’ve got two now that are in high school and two at primary school.”
“If we can all look back in a few years’ time and see the kids enjoying themselves and getting the opportunities that they’re craving, through the Catholic system, in the sports sector, I think we’ll all be pretty proud” – Michael Ennis
Sport well worth a try
It’s no surprise Mr Ennis is a strong advocate for sport, but the former Blues star believes it gives students a balance in their lives.
“I just think it’s (sport) so important these days,” he said, adding “we always talk about the health and the wellbeing and the mental side of things, and the stress that comes with kids wanting to perform academically.”
“I think sport gives them an avenue and a release to be able to connect with their peers and enjoy time out of the classroom physically … (it’s been) proven that there’s a lot of benefits in that” – Michael Ennis
“It’s great the schools are really investing in this space,” Mr Ennis said.
“I know that the Catholic system now is seeing how important it is and really trying to drive those avenues and pathways for the kids.
“Whether they want to do it just recreationally or at a high level, giving those kids an opportunity is something that’s impressive and I’m looking forward to being a part of that.”
Michael Ennis: Career Profile
- 273 NRL games for Newcastle, St George Illawarra, Brisbane, Canterbury and Cronulla
- 2016 NRL Premiership winner with Cronulla
- 8 State of Origin games for NSW
- 3 City-Country games for NSW Country