Eagles legend Luke Wild brings up 200 games
The veteran started his time with the Eagles in 2008 with his best years behind him and come this weekend the beloved scrummaging addict Luke Wild will be playing his 200th game for the club.
Over the course of 200, some memories that stick out are the Bald-Eagles days, playing against Stephen Larkham, playing with the likes of Owen Finegan and Adam Gresham, and seeing the evergreen Nugget on the sideline for the entirety of his career.
Luke says that rugby to him is all about the sense of mateship and community, which is particularly true at the Eagles.
“The Eagles are my second family. I love getting to play with some of my closest mates every weekend, and seeing the guys I’ve played with for years getting married and having kids”.
It would be easy to understand that as the years go on, the rigours of rugby would take its toll on the human body, but Luke’s love of the game and unrivalled passion allows him to keep playing.
“I love the physicality of the game. If I don’t feel sore and beaten up, then I haven’t played hard enough,”
“Now that I have a little son, it’s harder and harder to find time to commit to rugby, but it’s such a part of me that there’s no other option but to keep on playing”.
He will run out for his 200th game for our 4th Grade side at Portsea Oval on Saturday against RMC, starting at 1:30pm.
Reflecting on his favourite memories at the club, Luke turned to the ‘Bald Eagles’ days in the Monaro Competition.
“It was pure country footy – long road trips, boat races back at the other team’s clubhouse and then even longer drives home”,
“That was the 50th year of the club, we’d expanded and tried something new with the Baldies, players like Greg, Sam, Braden, Shawry, Mark and all the rest had a real vision for the team that year. It was great to be a part of.”
Saturday will be an extra special day for the club with Tia Baxter also bringing up her 50th game, the first any woman at the Eagles.
Gungahlin Eagles President Eoghan O‘ Byrne is proud of Luke’s milestone achievement and wishes him the best for Saturday.
“Luke Wild is synonymous with the Eagles, and to have another player of his calibre reach 200 is a great statement for our club”,
“You look at the list of great players who have done it, recently Matt Hawke, Pete Brown, Matt Power, Leigh Hancock, Ben McGee, and many moons ago guys like Leigh Donnellan, PON, and Terry Fox. That’s a serious group of names to be in the same category as”,
“Luke is proof that when you live and breathe rugby, and play on passion and heart, you become ageless. It’s a privilege to have people like Luke come into the club, and just embrace it and make it your life”,
“It’s also special for young players to see people like Luke be so committed – we want all of our players to aspire to play 200 games. That’s what make s strong club”,
“We’re extremely proud of Luke and wish him all the best for his 200th game this weekend.”