Karmichael shot to prominence as a Brisbane teen, excelling as a schoolboy athlete at virtually everything, including rugby league, rugby union, AFL and his then favourite sport, basketball.
Signed to scholarship forms with NRL powerhouse, the Brisbane Broncos, at seventeen coaching legend Wayne Bennett made him the youngest player ever to line-up in the club’s first grade squad, selecting him at fullback for the start of the 2004 NRL season. Playing alongside the likes of Darren Lockyer and Gordon Tallis, Hunt became a revelation, going on to play every game in his debut season and taking out the Broncos/NRL Rookie of the Year double.
In 2006, Karmichael, still a teenager, took his game to the next level once again, claiming the NRL trophy with the Broncos and debuting for both Queensland and Australia. A regular on the representative scene over the next two seasons, by 2008 he had won everything in the game – a remarkable feat which included silverware from the NRL Premiership, State of Origin series, Tri Nations and RLIF World Cup.
As kids many of us dream of playing first grade football, wearing the blue or maroon jersey and lining up for Australia, so when Karmichael had achieved all these things and more at the ripe old age of twenty-two, many wondered what could possibly be next.
Enter the AFL, the challenge of moving into foreign territory with an untried shift across codes, and one of the biggest media storms in recent memory! In July 2009 Karmichael signed a three-year-deal to play Australian rules football for the newly formed Gold Coast Suns Football Club, an expansion team projected to join the AFL in 2011. First though, was a move to Europe, where he agreed to join rugby union side Biarritz Olympique on a six month stint; helping them to the Heineken Cup final at the Stade de France in front of 79,000 fans.
One of Australia’s most revered and popular sportsman, ‘K’ has always been a young athlete with boundless potential and talent to burn. Now, as he prepares to turn a new page with the Suns, in a groundbreaking story that has already seen him reach the pinnacle of rugby league and later rugby union in Europe, the rest of us are left to ponder whether impossible really is nothing when you firmly put your mind to something.
The Facts That Matter
|Name:||Karmichael Neil Matthew Hunt|
|Place of Birth:||Auckland, New Zealand|
|Heritage:||Cook Islander and Samoan|
|Height & Weight:||186cm, 93kg|
|Hobbies:||Hanging out with Emma at home, playing Playstation (NBA 2K11, FIFA 11, Call of Duty) and overseas travel.|
|Favourite Sportsperson:||Michael Jordan, Allen Iverson, Vince Carter, Gershon Mosley. As a kid I would watch basketball DVD's over and over, then spend hours at the local courts trying to emulate their style and mimic their moves.|
|Favourite Sporting Team:||Manchester United and the Los Angeles Lakers are probably my two favourites. I’ve seen some amazing live games actually: the Lakers at the Staples Centre, United at Old Trafford, Barca at the Nou Camp and the Madrid derby at the Bernabéu. Seeing guys like Messi and Kaka score spectacular goals was out of this world.|
|Favourite Food & Drink:||Pepperoni pizza, sushi, Thai and Peach mango iced tea|
|Dream Car:||I'm loving my Holdens at the moment. Right now I have a silver HSV Maloo.|
|Favourite Music:||I probably listen to hip-hop more than anything, but my iPod has a lot of different music on it. My favourite artists are Kanye West, The Eagles and Creedence Clearwater Revival.|
|Favourite Movie:||Anything with Denzel Washington; you can always rely on him for a good movie. Training Day and Man On Fire come to mind.|
|Sporting Goals:||I try not to look too far ahead. Each day brings new challenges so I’m just focussed on working hard and playing consistent footy for the Suns.|
|Most Memorable Sporting Achievement:||There have been a few special highlights over the course of my career so far. Those that stand out would probably be the NRL grand final in 2006, my Test debut for Australia and the Heineken Cup final with Biarritz.|
|Best Advice Given:||“You reap what you sow” was something Wayne Bennett instilled in me when I was a young bloke at the Broncos. My parents have also been a great source of counsel, keeping me humble yet determined to take advantage of new opportunities.|
Karmichael Hunt's bio