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Fast facts

  • Born in Ivanhoe, NSW
  • Lives in Sydney, NSW
  • Represented Australia as a school boy and in the Junior Kangaroos
  • Debuted with the Canberra Raiders in 2008
  • Played with St George Illawarra before moving to Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles in 2018
  • State of Mind Advocate since 2015

Joel Thompson - Ken Stephen Medal Finalist 2018

Biography

Born in Ivanhoe NSW, Joel Thompson is one of the NRL's most experienced and respected players both on and off the field for his outstanding community work.

Joel played his junior football in country NSW before being signed to the Canberra Raiders in 2008 and represented the Australian Schoolboys team in 2006 and the Junior Kangaroos the following year.

Joel played with St George Illawarra before settling at the club of his childhood heroes, Manly-Warringah Sea Eagles where he signed for the 2018 season.

He has also represented NSW Country and the Indigenous All Stars. He has scored 53 tries in 198 appearances.

Joel describes having a "tough" upbringing in which he moved a lot and experienced domestic violence, drug and alcohol abuse first hand. The result of which he found himself in trouble with the police at a young age, and continued to battle with mental health issues as an adult.

State of Mind is a program I've been heavily involved in and would like to continue my support.

Joel ThompsonManly Warringah Sea Eagles

His experiences have inspired him to reach out to others to help navigate difficult times and seek help for their own issues. Joel says being candid and sharing his experiences helps him connect with younger men to encourage positive change.

Sea Eagles Joel Thompson looks on as expert partners discuss the NRL State of Mind program.
Sea Eagles Joel Thompson looks on as expert partners discuss the NRL State of Mind program.

Read more: Thompson shares bipolar battle to help remove stigma