Blake Austin arrived in the Nation’s Capital surrounded with plenty of excitement given his form for the Wests Tigers last season and the dashing pivot more than justified this excitement with his best ever season in the NRL.

Austin was simply sensational in his 23 appearances in 2015 and added noticeable flair, energy and creativity to the side’s attack, much to the adoration of the Raiders faithful.

But it wasn’t just the Raiders supporters who were captivated by Austin’s magic, the wider rugby league public soon caught Austin fever.

The entertaining man with the slicked back blonde hair and long bikie goatee was arguably the form player in the competition midway through the year.

Austin’s eye-catching form saw him earn his first senior representative jersey for City in the annual City/Country fixture.

The 2009 Australian Schoolboys representative starred for City scoring a hat-trick of tries and Man of the Match honours which propelled him into the spotlight of State of Origin calculations for the NSW Blues.

Whilst Austin missed out on a Blues jersey, he maintained his outstanding form for the Green Machine for the remainder of the season and almost guiding them to a semi-finals return.

The key to Austin’s game is his scything running game, whether it be taking the line on himself or through his innate support play.

Blessed with pace, a deceptive dummy, instinct and a Brad Fittler-like side step, Austin was Canberra’s top try scorer with 14 touchdowns as well as leading the team in line breaks with 16. Despite his size, he was also second in tackle breaks.

Under the tutelage of Ricky Stuart, one of the finest ball-players of his era, Austin’s composure, creativity for team mates and kicking game also improved. Austin finished the year with seven try assists, the third highest amount in the team.

After a tremendous individual season to date, in which he regularly pleased the crowd, Austin delighted them further in the lead up to the Raiders' final home game of the year when he announced an extension on his contract until the end of the 2018 season.

“Blake took a risk coming down to Canberra and it has paid off for both parties,” CEO Don Furner said. “He has shown a commitment to this Club and we are very happy to return that commitment with an upgraded and extended contract.

“In a very short space of time Blake has become one of our member’s favourite players and a player who people love to come and watch. We are thrilled that Blake will be with the Raiders for another three seasons. His professionalism both on and off the field have been of a very high standard and we see him as a big part of the clubs future.”

Unfortunately, Austin injured his shoulder in the Round 25 fixture which prematurely ended his season, however he still performed well enough during his 23 games to finish at fourth place on the leader board for the Meninga Medal.

Off the field, Austin was just as impressive. He was warm and personable with fans of all ages and would regularly help out at junior league visits and community initiatives. He is a great role model for the younger players despite him being just 23 years of age, and a brilliant ambassador for the club and the game as a whole.

Most Memorable Moment:

As the above video portrays, there were a wide array of highlights from Austin’s 2015 season, however we could not go past his hat-trick of tries in the first half against the Newcastle Knights in Round 18.

Unbelievably, Austin scored his hat-trick within just 11 minutes.

CLICK HERE to re-live the breathtaking hat-trick.

Statistics:

Matches

Runs

Metres

Tackles

Tries

Try Assists

Tackle Breaks

Offloads

Line Breaks

23

168

1788

395

14

7

59

17

16