Jack Wighton will play his 150th match for the Canberra Raiders when he takes to the field against the Melbourne Storm at AAMI Park on Saturday.
“To get those milestones is something you really look forward to, because you never know when your last game is coming around the corner,” Wighton said.
Since making his NRL debut for the club as a gangly 19-year-old in 2012, Wighton has played all across the Raiders backline but is thankful for cementing his position in the number six jersey.
“It’s been a good career but a weird one, I’ve been chucked here and everywhere,” said Wighton. “To finally have fallen back on my feet in the halves is something I’m really driven to stay in now. It’s somewhere I’m going to stay and keep building on.”
Born and raised in Orange in western NSW, Wighton came through the Canberra Raiders junior representative pathways and has since found a home in the nation’s capital.
“It’s home for me down here in Canberra now,” said Wighton. “I’ve made some great mates and great memories and hopefully there is plenty more to come.”
Raiders captain Jarrod Croker couldn’t be prouder of how far Wighton has developed over the years.
“I’m very proud of Jacko, he’s come a long way and he’s had a lot of tough times through that 150 and he’s playing career-best footy,” said Croker.
“I know what he brings to the team when he crosses that line,” said Croker. “He’s competitive, he’s aggressive and he wears his heart on his sleeve.”
Wighton’s ongoing impressive form and dominant displays saw him earn a call up for NSW this year, where he helped the Blues win the State of Origin series.
“To put on the blues jersey was something really special,” said Wighton. “However, I still have a long way to go and I think that’s the exciting thing.”
At only 26 years of age, Wighton is hopeful of playing plenty of more games in lime green and has set himself goals that he hopes to achieve while at the club.
“If I ever get a chance to wear the green and gold, that would be incredible,” said Wighton. “The biggest goal of them all would be to try and win a premiership for this club one day, that would be big.”
However, for now, the humble Wighton wants to focus on the challenge ahead as the team prepares to play the Storm this Saturday.
“Hitting 150 games, I feel like it’s a great achievement,” Wighton said. “I’m really excited to take to the park with the boys and get the job down in Melbourne.”
Raider Number: #303
Club Awards: 2011 NYC Player of the Year & 2015 Coach's Award
Club Appearances: 149
Club Tries: 43