In life and in competition, you will often hear Matt Hodgson described as the quiet achiever, industriously going about his business without fuss or spectacle.
It’s this same quality that translates through his rugby and business pursuits and is evident time and time again throughout his decorated career.
Growing up in Avoca Beach, on the sunny central coast of New South Wales, Matt’s early rugby career began with the Avoca Sharks where he played as a back until age 16. Matt progressed to the more competitive Sydney club rugby competition before being recruited by the NSW Waratahs and winning selection to play for Australia A and Australian Sevens.
While it’s unusual for a player to be redeveloped as a forward at such a late age, Hodgson accepted the challenge with enthusiasm and has grown throughout his career to be one of the most formidable loose forwards in International Rugby.
A specialist openside flanker, Matt’s versatility across all back row positions, speed and consistency in winning the ball at the breakdown have cemented him as an indispensable component of the starting lineup with his provincial team, the Emirates Western Force.
Matt is the type of player that every coach needs. His willingness to put his body on the line and consistency, no matter where he is placed in the lineup, is a major asset to the Force.
Joining the Force in their foundation season, Hodgson’s dedication and personal excellence were rewarded by Senior coaching staff and Executive when he was presented the first two years running with the Force Man award; a recognition given to the player deemed to best represent the team’s values in all that they do both on and off the field.
In what is largely considered his breakthrough season, Hodgson was awarded the Emirates Western Force player of the Year award for 2009, and then made history by backing it up with a second win for his standout season in 2010. Hodgson is the only player to have won the Player of the Year esteem more than once.
Hodgson’s exceptional performance, reliability and dedication also earned him another Force Man award in 2010, the third time in the club’s five-year history.
A few false starts in non-cap appearances and an unfortunate run with minor injury kept Matt from making his long awaited Wallabies debut, but it finally came in 2010 against Fiji during the domestic test season. Hodgson was a mainstay in Robbie Deans’ test squads.
In August 2012 Matt became the Club Captain of the Western Force and worked closely with new Coach Michael Foley to relaunch the club by focusing on a cultural overhaul. Both Matt and Foley played rugby under old school cultural values that had few similarities with the culture that had developed. Bringing back the traditional rugby club values and a new level of professionalism has served the club well moving into a new era of rugby in Western Australia.
2013 saw Matt secure the Force Man of the Year for an impressive 4th time. An award given to the player who best embodies the values of the ideal Force Man on and off the field. Who better to captain the team into the 2014 season?
Outside of Rugby, Matt is continually seeking out new business opportunities in his relevant fields of interest. He is a fully qualified Real Estate agent for sales and property management and is presently embarking on a Masters degree in Sports Law to support his involvement in Sports Management.
Matt enjoys the sunny coastal life in Perth with his wife Jo, son Hunter (born 14th March 2013) and their two staffies, Vino & Jagger.