Corey Payne Announces Retirement from Rugby League
Tuesday 29 January 2013 11:32 AM
Canterbury-Bankstown Bulldogs back rower Corey Payne has today announced his retirement from rugby league, effective immediately.
Payne, a local junior with the Chester Hill Club, has decided that with a number of commercial opportunities presenting themselves off the field that the time is right to shift his focus entirely on to those pursuits.
The former Dragons, Tigers and Bulldogs player played a total of 131 matches (Dragons 47, Tigers 41, Bulldogs 43) after making his NRL debut for the Dragons against the Bulldogs in round one of season 2005.
After achieving many milestones on the field as a player, the 28-year-old has also experienced academic success off the field through hard work and study. Through his application and dedication to this, Payne has received the following awards:
• 2013 – NSW Young Australian of the Year (this award recognises the work of young Australians aged 16 to 30 who are outstanding and exceptional young Australians)
• 2012 – Churchill Fellowship (this award allows recipients to travel overseas to gain much needed experience that may not be available here in Australia and to then give them more of an opportunity to excel in their chosen career here in Australia)
• 2011 - University of Sydney Young Alumni Award for Achievement (this recognises the achievements of students aged 30 and under)
• 2011 - NRL/RLPA Education and Welfare Award
• 2007 - Bachelor of Commerce from the University of Sydney (Accounting and Commercial Law)
Although still young enough and able to continue his rugby league career if he so wished, Payne believes the time is right to set his mind on achieving different goals.
“Growing up as a Bulldogs supporter and a local junior I always dreamt of playing first grade for the Club,” Payne said. “To say that I have been a member of two Jersey Flegg premiership sides, a winning NSW Cup side and to play in an NRL Grand Final all for the Bulldogs is quite unbelievable.
“The Bulldogs Club has always been a big part of my life and I would like to thank them as well as the Wests Tigers and St George Illawarra Dragons for all the opportunities they have provided me and acknowledge all the players, coaches and staff members that I have been associated with over the past 14-15 years."
“2013 will be a year where I finish my Master of Commerce at the University of Sydney, complete a Churchill Fellowship, maintain the positive momentum of the Future Direction Network which assists disadvantaged students reach their academic potential at university and carry out the responsibility of being NSW Young Australian of the Year. "
“I intend studying for an MBA abroad in 2014 and transition to a business career which I hope is as challenging and rewarding as my rugby league career has been."
“I would also like to make special note of the support, encouragement and sacrifices my mother and father have made in helping me achieve so much through the sport of rugby league.”
Bulldogs Chief Executive Officer Todd Greenberg admires Payne for his maturity through the process of making such a tough decision.
“Corey has a very wise head on his shoulders and I admire him for being so open and honest throughout this process,” Greenberg said. “He has a number of opportunities outside of the game which he has worked hard at developing so we wish him well with that.
“He has worked tirelessly on setting up his Future Direction Network and the work he has done with the local community is something that not only he can be proud of but also something that we at the Club are very proud of.
“Corey will not be lost to the Club and we look forward to seeing him back here in the future whether it be through presentations to the playing group or just simply for a visit.”