Ryan Girdler

  • Playing Career

Playing Career

Vital Statistics

Born
Tuesday, 19th September, 1972
Current Age
51 years and 250 days
Place Of Birth
Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

Awards & Accolades

Dally M Centre Of The Year
1999, 2000
Dally M Representative Player Of The Year
2000

Biography

I’warra junior joined the Panthers in 1993 with the goal of cementing a first grade position as a centre. Girdler’s first two seasons were curtailed by a knee ligament injury and operations on both groins and he seriously considered returning to the I’warra local competition until new coach Royce Simmons talked him into staying with the Panthers. Girdler quickly gained a reputation as a strong attacking left centre, a confident defender and exceptionally gifted goal-kicker. His form brought him into the Super League ANZac Test where he kicked five goals in Australia’s 34-22 win. Despite missing NSW’s win in the final of the Tri-Series competition because of injury, he played an important role in Penrith’s Super League semi-final campaign. The leading point-scorer in 1997’s Super League season (197pts, which also broke clubman Greg Alexander’s point-scoring record for a season) Girdler represented Super League Australia against NZ in September before touring Great Britain. His solid form and confident goal kicking saw him play in two Tests but despite continued praise from his club coach he was not able to break into rep football in the reunified 1998 season. Girdler was at the forefront of the club’s good early form in 1999, representing NSW in three matches and making his Test debut as a reserve in Australia’s Tri-series wins over Great Britain and NZ in October. (The Penrith centre originally missed selection but was a late addition after forward Brad Thorn was ruled out). Girdler proved to be international class centre – and an ‘intercept king’ - when he crossed for a try in Australia’s 52-0 thrashing of NZ in the 2000 ANZac Test and scored tries in all three of NSW’s State of Origin wins. In the final match of the series, the 56-16 thrashing of Queensland, Girdler equalled the great Dally Messenger when he scored 32pts (3t, 10g). It was a record-breaking year for the popular Penrith Test star – he scored most points in a State of Origin series (52pts – 5t, 16g including most tries in a series and most goals in a match), eclipsed his own club point-scoring record and posted an imposing 46pts (3t, 17g) in Australia’s 110-4 win over Russia in the World Cup. Unfortunately, a shoulder injury kept Girdler out of Australia’s World Cup final team, but worse was to follow in 2001. Despite playing for NSW (2 matches in which he scored all his team’s points in the 40-14 loss in the series decider) and for Australia against NZ, Penrith’s slump to the bottom of the premiership table ultimately cost him his spot on the Kangaroo Tour (even his faultless goal-kicking deserted him, landing just 48g in 2001). Returning from a potentially life-threatening sternum injury in 2003, he took his place in Penrith’s grand final-winning team before gaining a place in the Kangaroo Tour at year’s end. However, Girdler re-injured a troublesome hamstring on the tour and did not add to his Test appearances. After another injury-ridden year in 2004 (ironically, he re-injured his hamstring in scoring an intercept try against the Bulldogs that equalled Greg Alexander’s club record of 101t), Girdler retired when the Panthers lost the preliminary final.
- ALAN WHITICKER

Playing 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.

Competitions

Competition   App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
NSWRL/ARL/Super League/NRL Premiership 227 109 624   6 1690 102 120 5 44.93% List
Challenge Cup AU 7 3 4   - 20 5 2 0 71.43% List
NSWRL/ARL/Super League/NRL Finals 11 3 27   1 67 6 5 0 54.55% List
Anzac Tests 2 1 5   - 14 2 0 0 100.00% List
Test Series 2 - 9   - 18 2 0 0 100.00% List
State of Origin 8 7 27   - 82 5 2 1 62.50% List
Tour Matches Australia 2 1 1   - 6 2 0 0 100.00% List
Tri-Nations 2 - 1   - 2 2 0 0 100.00% List
World Cup 5 6 18   - 60 5 0 0 100.00% List


International

Test Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Australia (SL) 1997 4 - 16   - 32 3 1 0 75.00% List
Australia 1999-01, 2003 11 9 24   - 84 11 0 0 100.00% List
Overall1997-2003 15 9 40   0 116 14 1 0 93.33% List

World Cup Matches - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Australia 1999-2000 5 6 18   - 60 5 0 0 100.00% List


Representative

Australia - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
NSW (SL) 1997 2 - 7   - 14 2 0 0 100.00% List
NSW 1999-01 8 7 27   - 82 5 2 1 62.50% List
Overall1997-2001 10 7 34   0 96 7 2 1 70.00% List


Club Career

NSWRL/ARL/Super League/NRL Premiership - By Year

Team Season App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Illawarra NSWRL 1991 1 - -   - - 1 0 0 100.00% List
Illawarra NSWRL 1992 22 8 43 / 66 65.15% - 118 13 8 1 59.09% List
Penrith NSWRL 1993 16 8 8 / 15 53.33% - 48 6 10 0 37.50% List
Penrith NSWRL 1994 11 3 1 / 5 20.00% - 14 5 4 2 45.45% List
Penrith ARL 1995 19 10 55 / 86 63.95% - 150 8 11 0 42.11% List
Penrith ARL 1996 20 8 65 / 86 75.58% - 162 7 12 1 35.00% List
Penrith Super League 1997 19 11 76 / 82 92.68% 1 197 9 10 0 47.37% List
Penrith NRL 1998 13 11 45 / 58 77.59% - 134 3 10 0 23.08% List
Penrith NRL 1999 21 18 77 / 102 75.49% 3 229 11 9 1 52.38% List
Penrith NRL 2000 24 13 78 / 108 72.22% 2 210 11 13 0 45.83% List
Penrith NRL 2001 19 7 48 / 78 61.54% - 124 4 15 0 21.05% List
Penrith NRL 2002 14 6 38 / 59 64.41% - 100 3 11 0 21.43% List
Penrith NRL 2003 16 4 44 / 67 65.67% - 104 12 4 0 75.00% List
Penrith NRL 2004 12 2 46 / 57 80.70% - 100 9 3 0 75.00% List

NSWRL/ARL/Super League/NRL Premiership - By Team

Team Years App T G   GK % FG Pts W L D Win %  
Illawarra 1991-92 23 8 43 / 66 65.15% - 118 14 8 1 60.87% List
Penrith 1993-04 204 101 581 / 803 72.35% 6 1572 88 112 4 43.14% List
Overall1991-2004 227 109 624 / 869 71.81% 6 1,690 102 120 5 44.93% List

Your Say

  • Anonymous
    11/06/2012

    One of the true nice guys who played in the NRL. Makes nice coffee too.

  • Roger
    25/02/2015

    Never seen a player intercept the ball better than Ryan Girdler.

  • William Hans
    04/06/2017

    Surely, he was a very nice cool guy to watch when he played for the mighty panthers in der 2granfinals especially against Sydney Roosters when they won the Telstra Premiership Trophy..

    Ahahah.. I am one of his die hard fans in the land of the unexpacted.. Papua New Guinea!

    Wishing him all the best in his life endovour...

    Will love to get him contact.. Go Girds wen he was intercepting da bullet passes from every player..

  • Anonymous
    24/10/2020

    Best centre to ever play the game!

  • Anonymous
    23/11/2021

    Neeve seen a player who can read play well enough to intercept a pass to score a try some any times intercept king ryan girlder

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Contributions: Rugby League Tables, Andrew Ferguson, AJ Lucantonio, Shawn Dollin, Greg Fiveash, Paul Carter, Terry Liberopoulos, Steven Russo, Max Turner, Cymru RL

Sources: David Middleton's Rugby League Yearbook (1987-88 to present), Official NRL Website