Coffs' own Wallaby named Classic Statesman of Rugby
COFFS Harbour-born former Wallaby Matt Cockbain has joined five other distinguished legends of the game to be named 2014 Classic Statesmen of Australian Rugby.
Matt's nomination covers the 2000s era to complement Charles Wilson (1950s), Dick Marks (1960s), Stan Pilecki (1970s), Jeff Miller (1980s) and Rod McCall (1990s).
ARU chief executive Bill Pulver said Matt and his fellow statesmen will play a role in the current Test series before again being recognised when they come together in the lead-up to Australia's third Bledisloe Cup Test in October, where they will be presented to the Rugby public.
"Our 2014 Classic Wallabies Statesmen are fantastic ambassadors for our code and it's a pleasure to formally recognise their contributions to the game," Mr Pulver said.
"Our inductees represent the core values associated with Rugby in Australia and are an inspiration to our current squad of Wallabies and the next generation of players coming through."
Born in Coffs Harbour in 1972, the towering 1.98m Cockbain played lock or flanker and was a top performer across seven years in the Wallabies jumper, peaking in 1999 when Australia won the Rugby World Cup in a 35-12 win over France.
He played 63 Tests in a golden period for Australian Rugby.
Matt is currently assistant coach of the Melbourne Rebels.