Jon Clarke rejoins the Manly Sea Eagles of the National Rugby League. “A fantastic opportunity”

With the NRL team Manly Sea Eagles, former Great Britain international hooker Jon Clarke is making a comeback to rugby league.

Ahead of the 2024 season, the 44-year-old has started a new position with the Sea Eagles as head of performance.

During his rugby league career, Clarke played for the Wigan Warriors, London Broncos, Warrington Wolves, and Widnes Vikings, making nearly 400 matches overall. He also earned two caps for Great Britain in international competition.

The hooker, who was born in Lowton, enjoyed stints as a performer in the Super League with Warrington and Widnes before joining the England Rugby Union in time for the Rugby World Cup in 2019.

Clarke, who served as a member of the coaching staff for the 2021 British and Irish Lions tour to South Africa, has rejoined Manly as the NRL team’s head of performance.

Jon Clarke discusses his new position with the Manly Sea Eagles: “A fantastic chance”
After signing with the Sea Eagles, Clarke has reconnected with two former teammates from his 18-year playing career: head coach Anthony Seibold and chief executive Tony Mestrov.

In an interview with the official Manly club website, Clarke stated: “In 1998, when I was seventeen or eighteen, Tony came across to Wigan.”

He was a fantastic addition to Wigan’s front row. Under coach John Monie, he performed incredibly well.

“When I moved to Manly, there was already a relationship there because we both later joined the London Broncos.

“I got to know Seibs at the London Broncos.” There, we spent a year. He was in the front row. After a few years apart, we crossed paths again when Seibs started working for England Rugby, where I had also been employed. We experimented with a new sport in union and really enjoyed it.

Then, in 2023, Seibs was appointed head coach of Manly. We had a brief conversation concerning my visit. It has always been my goal to try my hand at the NRL. As a player, I never had the opportunity, so this was a fantastic chance.

In 1999, Clarke won a Super League championship with Wigan, and in 2010, he won the Challenge Cup with Warrington.

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