Speakers Profile - Mark Gerrard

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Mark comes from a strong Tongan decent sporting family consisting of his cousin and fellow Wallaby Wycliff Palu, and sister Mo'onia Gerrard who is an Australian Netballer. Mark was born and raised on Sydney northern beaches where he originally played Rugby League before switching to Union in his late teens, where after only a year of playing the code he was selected as a Australian Schoolboy representative in 1999. However even though Mark represents Australia he has not forgotten his Tongan heritage when he jumped at the chance recently to play for Tonga in a coronation match in front of the present King of Tonga.

Mark has 71 caps for the ACT Brumbies between 2003 and 2009. Mark was the glue which held their defense together over these seasons and has led to him representing the Australian Wallabies on eighteen occasions to date.

Mark then made the move to Japan to play for NTT Communications It was here that Mark helped NTT Communications to an undefeated 2009 season. This inevitably promoted NTT Communications to Japanese 1st Division for the first time in history.

Mark has an excellent long kicking game, and a side step which baffles all opponents, add this to his powerful running game and what you are left with is a devastating player.

At just 27 years of age Mark is at the peak of his career, and is looking to conquer Australian Rugby again as he signs with the Melbourne Rebels for the 2011-12 seasons. Mark is looking forward to earning his spot in the Wallaby side and to further develop his game under the coaching of Rod McQueen.

When Mark is not out on the pitch dancing around opponents, he can be found enjoying time with his wife Larisa and two children, son Markus and daughter Milana. Mark is currently completing his Diploma of Management and is a Chef in the hospitality industry, an industry that does not fall short of opportunities down in Melbourne.