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'Pretty cool': Boyd retires with 112-year-old record

Darius Boyd will retire this week with a remarkable 112-year record as the most capped Test player in Australian rugby league history to have never tasted defeat.

The 33-year-old Broncos fullback won all of his 23 Tests, a record that he is rightly "very proud" of.

The next best Australian Test record in the undefeated stakes belongs to Gorden Tallis, Greg Brentnall and Justin Hodges who all played 13 career Tests without a loss. Hodges' tenure included a draw.

Boyd will play his 337th first grade game against the Cowboys on Thursday night at Suncorp Stadium. That will take him into ninth position on the all-time list, one game ahead of both Brad Fittler and John Sutton.

The 2006 and 2010 premiership winner also played 28 Origin games for the Maroons, scoring 17 tries.

For all his success at club and Origin level, it is his record as a Test player from his debut in 2008 until his final game in the Anzac Test of 2017 that catches the eye.

"I didn't realise that I had that kind of record until the 2016 Four Nations and it was in that series that I actually did think about it," Boyd told

"I remember thinking, 'I don’t want to lose.  I want to keep winning because to have an unbeaten Test record would be pretty cool'.

"It worked out that we won all the games over there in England.

It was just a really good time to be part of the Kangaroos

Darius Boyd recalls his stellar career in green and gold

"I played the Anzac Test in 2017 but then pulled out of the World Cup and they won all of them anyway, so if I'd played in that I might have had an even better record.

"Looking back, I am very proud of my Test career. I played with some great players and went through a great era there.

"Whenever Australia lost I was either injured or in the extended squad and not selected for the games that they did lose. There is a lot of luck involved as well I think."

Boyd, who scored 16 tries for Australia, remembers his Test debut in a 46-6 win over Papua New Guinea during the 2008 World Cup. Some timely advice from a Test legend got him up for the challenge.

"Myself and Karmichael Hunt got called up late for our debuts after I think Justin Hodges and Brett Stewart pulled out," he said.

"I enjoyed being under Sticky [Ricky Stuart] for the six or eight weeks of that World Cup. Scott Prince was there and Craig Fitzgibbon so it was cool to learn off a lot of those older guys and guys you'd seen on TV.

Broncos looking to send Darius out on a high

"When I got told I was going to play I was excited. I'd played Origin that year for the first time but I was only 21 and a bit nervous. I didn't know what to expect.

"It was Laurie Daley who came in and told us that when you play the Kumuls you know you’ve been in a contest and that they are physical and give it to you. That helped to get me ready for what was to come."

 As for his fondest Test memories, playing in the 2013 World Cup final win is one. The 2016 Four Nations tournament is also a favourite.

"I played fullback for the whole tournament because Billy Slater was still injured and got the man of the match in the final against New Zealand in Mal Meninga’s first series as Aussie coach," Boyd said.

"I’d had Mal with all the Origin stuff and it was good to be under Mal and his principles where he really brought the pride back in the jersey.

"Not that it wasn’t there before but there were some inspirational things he came up with in camp.

Darius Boyd in the early weeks of the 2020 season.
Darius Boyd in the early weeks of the 2020 season. ©Scott Davis/NRL Photos

"It was just a really good time to be part of the Kangaroos. That is one of my most recent memories and one of my fondest as well."

It was a year where Boyd also won the Ron McAuliffe Medal for the Maroons in a series where he also played in his favourite position of fullback after previously forging a devastating partnership alongside Greg Inglis on the left edge.

"In 2016 we won the series in Origin, the Test at the start of the year and the Four Nations at the end," Boyd recalled.

"At fullback, you are more of a key member of the team. More revolves around you. If you have a bad game it shows, and if you play a good game it probably shows as well, whereas you can hide a bit on the wing."

Boyd will up the ante with his valuable work in the mental health sphere when he retires as one of the modern era’s most successful players.

"I have been fortunate to have some great times in footy, a premiership in my first year with the Broncos, a premiership with the Dragons, State of Origin series wins that will stay with me forever and the honour of playing for my country," he said.

Acknowledgement of Country

National Rugby League respects and honours the Traditional Custodians of the land and pay our respects to their Elders past, present and future. We acknowledge the stories, traditions and living cultures of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples on the lands we meet, gather and play on.

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