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Jack Wighton: I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Ricky

Last year a drunken night out almost cost Jack Wighton his career.

This year Wighton has had his best season in the NRL.

Wighton’s off-field antics cost him a 10-game ban and over $30,000 worth of fines, while he only narrowly avoided jail time.

However, a career-defining move from Canberra coach Ricky Stuart during the pre-season which saw Wighton move from fullback to five-eighth has paid dividends for the 26-year-old who’s had his personal best season in the NRL.

Wighton was also made his State of Origin debut for New South Wales in their series win over Queensland in 2019 and now he has the chance to help Canberra win their first premiership in 25 years on Sunday.

The Raiders’ star told Macquarie Sports Radio Halftime that he’s grateful of the opportunity he has been given.

“It’s been a massive 12 months,” Wighton said.

“This is definitely the better side of it, I’m a lot better sitting here and doing this than what I was doing 12 months ago that’s for sure.

“Ricky’s been great, he stuck by me, I wouldn’t be here talking to you guys if not.

“He’s been massive and he’s still helping me improve every day on my game and as a half.

“It’s just growing and growing and the help is always there.”

After losing 14 games in their last two seasons by four points or less, the Raiders have been one of the biggest improvers in 2019 on the back of their strong off-season recruitment and improvement in defence.

Wighton has played 25 games this season and has scored eight tries for the Raiders while he is also averaging 109 running metres per game.

Canberra will face the Roosters in Sunday’s NRL Grand Final at ANZ Stadium with kick-off at 7:30pm.


Click ‘play’ to hear the full interview below.

Mark Evans/Getty Images.