Noel Cleal

Career Stats & Summary

Vital Statistics

Full Name
Noel Harvey Cleal
Nickname(s)
Crusher
Born
Wednesday, 16th October, 1957
Current Age
64 years and 105 days

Awards & Accolades

Dally M Second Rower Of The Year
1984, 1986

Known Family Links

Son
Kane Cleal
Brother
Les Cleal

Biography

Powerhouse centre/second row forward, originally from Warialda, first came to prominence playing on the wing for Northern Division against Great Britain in 1979. With his much-travelled, look-alike brother Les, Noel Cleal had already captain-coached Wondai to a premiership in Queensland, represented Wide Bay and then NSW Country while playing for Scone. ‘Crusher’ Cleal came to Easts from Sawtell in 1980 and was a centre in the club’s grand final loss to Canterbury. He later followed coach Bob Fulton to Manly in 1983, after Fulton had moved him to the second row. Following another grand final loss (against P’matta) his rep career took off in the mid-1980s. Cleal represented NSW in 1984 and was runner-up in that year's Rothmans Medal competition. He made his Test debut against NZ the following year and after a stint with Widens (1985-86) played in three Tests against Papua New Guinea and Great Britain on the 1986 Kangaroo tour before breaking his arm and returning home. While not as effective in defence, Cleal was given latitude by his coaches to use his strength and size in attack. He played in Manly's grand final success in 1987 before seeing out the remainder of his career with English club Hull. Cleal was the English club's choice as replacement coach in 1990 but despite winning the British premiership trophy in 1991, he was sacked when the club faltered the following year. Returning to Australia, Cleal was snapped up by P’matta as a junior development and recruitment officer. In 2004 he took on a similar role with Manly – a season which saw his son Kane make his first grade debut with the club.

- ALAN WHITICKER

Career Statistics

All statistics shown in this section are based only on data available in the RLP database, and are not necessarily a complete and/or 100% accurate representation of a player's career. This information should be used as a guide only. If you see a question mark (?), it denotes that the figure is not available.

To view a list of corresponding matches, click on the List button.

International

Test Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Australia 1985-86 8 3 -   - 12 8 0 0 100.00% List
Overall 1985-1986 8 3 0   0 12 8 0 0 100.00% List

International Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Rest Of The World 1988 1 1 -   - 4 0 1 0 0.00% List
Overall 1988 1 1 0   0 4 0 1 0 0.00% List

World Cup Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Australia 1985-1986 2 2 -   - 8 2 0 0 100.00% List
Overall 1986 2 2 0   0 8 2 0 0 100.00% List


Representative

Australia - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
NSW Firsts 1981 1 - -   - - 1 0 0 100.00% List
New South Wales 1984-88 12 3 -   - 12 8 4 0 66.67% List
NSW City Firsts 1984 1 1 -   - 4 1 0 0 100.00% List
NSW Country Firsts 1985-86 2 1 -   - 4 0 2 0 0.00% List
NSW Country 1987 1 1 -   - 4 0 1 0 0.00% List
Overall 1981-1988 17 6 0   0 24 10 7 0 58.82% List


Club Career

Australian League Matches - By Year

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Eastern Suburbs NSWRFL 1980 25 8 1   - 26 15 8 2 60.00% List
Eastern Suburbs NSWRFL 1981 18 10 -   - 30 11 7 0 61.11% List
Eastern Suburbs NSWRFL 1982 27 8 -   - 24 17 8 2 62.96% List
Manly NSWRFL 1983 24 11 -   - 44 20 4 0 83.33% List
Manly NSWRL 1984 23 10 -   - 40 14 9 0 60.87% List
Manly NSWRL 1985 20 7 1   - 30 11 8 1 55.00% List
Manly NSWRL 1986 21 5 9 / 13 69.23% - 38 12 9 0 57.14% List
Manly NSWRL 1987 15 7 -   - 28 13 2 0 86.67% List
Manly NSWRL 1988 21 3 -   - 12 14 7 0 66.67% List
Manly NSWRL 1989 4 - -   - - 1 3 0 25.00% List
Overall 1980-1989 198 69 11   0 272 128 65 5 64.65% List

Australian League Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Eastern Suburbs 1980-82 70 26 1   - 80 43 23 4 61.43% List
Manly 1983-89 128 43 10   - 192 85 42 1 66.41% List
Overall 1980-1989 198 69 11   0 272 128 65 5 64.65% List

Australian Finals Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Eastern Suburbs 1980-82 8 1 -   - 3 3 5 0 37.50% List
Manly 1983-84, 1986-88 7 1 3   - 10 3 4 0 42.86% List
Overall 1980-1988 15 2 3   0 13 6 9 0 40.00% List

English League Career - By Year

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Widnes Championship 1985/86 15 8 -   - 32 10 3 2 66.67% List
Hull FC Championship 1989/90 24 9 -   - 36 16 8 0 66.67% List
Hull FC Championship 1990/91 8 3 -   - 12 7 1 0 87.50% List
Overall 1985-1991 47 20 0   0 80 33 12 2 70.21% List

English League Career - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Widnes 1985 15 8 -   - 32 10 3 2 66.67% List
Hull FC 1989-90 32 9 -   - 36 23 9 0 71.88% List
Overall 1985-1991 47 20 0   0 80 33 12 2 70.21% List

Your Say

scott says: noel had a brilliant career and in my eyes he should have played more tests and origins. He alway went forward and never afraid of any player it was a prilivege watching noel play football (22/09/2012)

Graham Walsh says: I worked with Crusher at Hull FC, he was a first class coach with excellent analytic ability. He put together and coached Premiership winning team. Following the Cup win the Club Board sold key players vastly weakening the team. Crusher took the blame for poor decisions by the Club Board that were beyond his control.

An exciting and dangerous runner with the ball as a player, this guy was a huge character in every sense. (11/08/2015)

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