- 565 first grade games combined
- 31 Origins
- 36 Kangaroos
- Both Captained NRL club
- One has an average of 50 tackles per game record (not Fletch)
- One has attracted a record home/away crowd to his final game (not Fletch)
- Between them 5 Provan Summons Medals (all Hindy)
- Between them 5 Dally M Second Rower of the Year Awards (all Hindy)
- Between them only 1 premiership…
- Head Coaches of the Nepal Donkeys
- Promoters of the Auckland 2s
Fletch and Hindy
Combined Career Stats
“As a tackler, I’m no good,” Nathan Hindmarsh once said.
That must mean that Hindy laid over 12,000 lousy tackles in his stellar career. Several hundred opponents, still licking their wounds after being crunched, would all be saying, “I don’t think so!”
Hindy brought down the equivalent of every man who ever played first grade football in Australia and then some!
He reached the pinnacle in Round 23 of the 2007 NRL season with 75 tackles against the Storm – they were like bumper cars, running into a Hindmarsh cracker of a tackle at every turn.
He made his first NRL tackle on a long-forgotten Adelaide Rams player in the western NSW country town of Parkes in 1998 and since then he cut down almost everything that moved in a career of extraordinary dedication. In his prime, Hindy combined his defensive workload with a powerful running game and earned recognition as Dally M second-rower of the year five times.
Brian Smith offered this description: “He is a machine. He hasn’t got an ideal body. He’s got a sway back and fat gut and funny bum. But physiologically he’s got something inside him and he keeps going and going.”
And that was the thing about him: never give up, never say die. Many were the times that he would chase 30, 40 or 50 metres to run down an opponent when everyone else had given up. And when he caught him – bang!
Hindy has a wealth of stories about his long career at the Eels. A bit like the way he played, he’ll tell it straight – no mucking around – but always with a self-deprecating sense of humour. Nathan enjoys meeting fans and sharing a drink. He’s a good bloke!
Just imagine how good a footballer he would have been, if he’d been able to tackle!
Whilst Fletch is best known as co-coach of the Nepal Donkeys and the other (best?) half of ‘Fletch and Hindy’, he did have some success as a player in the NRL.
Fletch earned thirteen caps for Australia and played fourteen times for the Blues in State of Origin. Proof of his natural talent, he had played only 24 NRL games when he was first selected for the Australian team to compete in the 1999 Rugby League Tri-Nations tournament.
At club level, Fletch achieved premiership success for the Roosters in 2002 before captaining the Rabbitohs and winning the George Piggins Medal as the club’s best and fairest player in 2003. Although deep down he has a soft spot for the club that brought him a premiership, Fletch admits that his allegiances are inevitably torn when Souths plays the Roosters. “The beauty of it is that I just barrack for whoever wins!” That’s loyalty for you!
Of his 14 games for the Blues between 1998 and 2003, Game Three of the 2000 series was the most controversial. Fletch was the man at the centre of the most famous try celebration of all time when he and half a dozen team-mates enacted the ‘hand grenade’ on their way to a record 56-16 win. The Maroons still talk about it! “They haven’t forgotten about the hand grenades – I know that much. I’m sick of it. I should be getting a Queensland tracksuit for that because I’ve been the motivation for years!”
Fletch’s influence is felt across the nation. The coach of the Nepal Donkeys has plenty to give.