Potential Hull FC signing Scott Prince: Profile
Hull FC have made an offer to sign Gold Coast Titans captain Scott Prince on a three-year deal, the Australian outfit has confirmed.
Speculation linking Prince to an East Yorkshire move mounted yesterday, with numerous reports in both the Australian press and the British national news.
So what would Hull FC be getting for their money if the Aussie half-back penned a deal?
Born and raised in a small mining town in north-west Queensland, Mount Isa, 32-year-old Prince is an Aboriginal from the Kalkadoon tribe.
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He was first spotted at the age of 15 while part of the North Queensland Cowboys development squad.
In 1995 he attended a Brisbane Broncos camp in Townsville, where he met Australian professional rugby league football coach Wayne Bennett for the first time.
After playing a trial game with the Cowboys early the following year he was offered a scholarship. The youngster’s skills also caught the attention of Bennett and the Broncos, who also offered him a scholarship.
In the end Prince opted to join the Cowboys, as they were closer to home. He signed his first proper contract at the end of 1998, his first year out of high school.
That year he was named Cowboys’ Rookie of the Year.
In 2001 Prince joined the Brisbane Broncos, and represented Brisbane in the 2001 World Club Challenge.
Later that year, just months after his father was killed in a car accident, Prince snapped his lower right leg in two places while playing for the Broncos. It was his second broken leg during his time with the outfit.
Prince later told the Brisbane-based Courier Mail: "It was a period where I thought rugby league probably wasn't the avenue for me to take."
At the end of the 2002 season he was named the Brisbane Broncos’ Clubman of the Year. However, at the end of his third year Prince, who had also endured knee and hamstring injuries, was told the Broncos could not guarantee him a spot on the team.
But he was soon offered the chance to reunite with Wests Tigers coach Tim Sheens, who had given him his break at the Cowboys. In 2004 he became a Wests Tigers halfback.
The following year he became team captain, and was named Player of the Year.
In 2007 Prince embarked on the next leg of his career journey, joining the Gold Coast Titans. He was soon named co-captain of the inaugural team with Luke Bailey.
In 2008 Prince was named in the Kangaroos World Cup Squad, and awarded International Rugby League Federation Halfback of the Year.
The following year he signed a four-year contract extension with the Titans, keeping him on the Gold Coast until the end of 2014.
He told the Australian Associated Press: “This contract pretty much rules out going to the Super League or any other sport, the union, so I'm happy to stay here and know that I'm retiring a Titan.”
Titans chief executive Michael Searle said of the signing: "We see it as a life-time contract. We sat down with Scott and asked him how long he thought he could play for. He said to the end of 2014.
"He will finish his career here. You would not rule out the chance of Scott coaching if he saw that as a career path for him."
In March 2010 Prince was struck by injury woe once again, being ruled out for several weeks after suffering a broken thumb. But he was soon back on form, with Wests Tigers’ Benji Marshall labelling him the real NRL finals dangerman.
He told Fox Sports: "With their home semi on Friday, and his effect on the Titans, I think Princey will be the most influential and dangerous player.
"Just from playing with him in 2005 and against him this year, he's come along in leaps and bounds. To get where he is now, he's brought that team a long way.”
That year Prince was named both Dally ‘M’ Halfback of the Year and International Rugby League Federation Halfback of the Year - an honour bestowed on him just two years previous.
In 2011 Prince marked his 250th NRL match – a milestone, the Courier Mail noted “reached only by a select few.” At that time only five players left in the NRL had played more games than Prince.
Fast-forward to October 2012 and Prince has played 124 games for the Titans in a 254-match career.
He is contracted to the Titans for another two seasons, but it is believed they will not stand in his way of a move to Super League.
Titans’ football manager Scott Clark confirmed Hull FC have made an offer for Prince. "If Scott is keen to entertain that offer and seek a release then we've got to work through it from there,” he said.
Prince is willing to walk out of his contract with Gold Coast to join Hull FC next season, the Mail today revealed.