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Cotter overcoming adversity to reach success

23 May 20, 4:27PM 0 Comments

Written by Oliver Kellner-Dunk

Photo by Getty Images

North Queensland Cowboys up and coming star Reuben Cotter has had a tougher road to the NRL than most, however he persevered and made his first grade debut in 2019.

Cotter’s career began in the Mackay system where he would end up playing for the Cutters, with the opportunity to learn off of his be of the best hookers in the NRL.

“I probably had a few different people that I was able to learn off, Jake Granville was a big help to say the least. I liked the way he played and how hard he worked so I tried to take that into my game.” Cotter told Everything Rugby League.

The 21-year-old tore his ACL in both 2016 and 2017. Despite these two road blocks on his journey to the NRL, Cotter would push through and not let the injuries deter him from his goal of returning to the field, and finishing university.

“My first knee came as a surprise, I’d never had a serious injury before so it sort of through me off. I didn’t know how to deal with it at first so I got stuck into my study which kept me busy.

“I was obviously keen to get back on the park I was pretty serious with my rehab at the club which they were great with. I was able to be around the boys at training and my family still lived in Townsville with me so I had a good support group.

“When it happened again I was devastated but also knew what I had to do to get back. So I got stuck into it again along with uni and made sure I was doing everything I could to get my body and mind right. I set myself a goal to finish my study by the time I was fit to play, that kept me honest and made me want to work harder.”

Since his ACL tear the hooker had been hellbent on getting a shot in the NRL and in round 13 of the 2019 NRL season, Cotter would make his first grade debuted for the Cowboys against the Sea Eagles.

“I found out on the Tuesday and it was emotional at first but so I was stoked, I had most of the week to take it in with family and friends.

“Being something I thought about for so long while injured and to finally be able to live it was surreal. It’s a special feeling and one that I’ll remember forever.”

Arguably just as memorable as making his debut, was playing with a childhood idol.

“Being able to play alongside Matt Scott. He’s one of the greats in the middle and someone you’d watch as a kid. Just the physicality and competitiveness he carried when taking the field made you want to lift to another level.”

Looking to the future now, Cotter is currently without a contract in 2021, however hopes to remain a Cowboy.

“I would love to stay at the club. I love Townsville, being so close to family and mates. We have a good group of boys within the squad so that’s exciting, but the goal is to play NRL so wherever that opportunity is.”

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