Ashley Taylor signs captain-coach contract

    He last played in the NRL in 2022.

    Ethan Lee Chalk

    Coming off his first-ever coaching gig with the Newtown Lions, Ashley Taylor has returned to his hometown of Toowoomba for the 2024 season.

    Taylor has joined the Toowoomba Brothers Leprechauns on a captain-coach contract as he looks to lead them to victory in the Toowoomba Rugby League competition.

    It will be the first time he has returned to the club that he played for as a junior.

    One of the most promising rugby league talents in his playing days, Taylor's professional career would come to an abrupt end after continual issues with a long-term hip injury.

    A Junior Kangaroo, his NRL career would last eight seasons with stints at the Brisbane Broncos, Gold Coast Titans and New Zealand Warriors  - last playing in the competition in 2022.

    His career included 116 NRL games, 327 points, a one-time appearance for the Indigenous All Stars, honours for the Under-20 Queensland team and a 2014 Holden Cup Grand Final victory for the Broncos.

    "To the three clubs I have been apart of, the Broncos, Titans and Warriors, thankyou for giving me the opportunity to represent the clubs across the board, and I've enjoyed every moment of my career," Taylor said when he announced his retirement.

    "Three shoulder reconstructions, two compound fractured fingers, hand, arm, wrist, ankle, abductor and the more recent hip surgery.

    "I think my body has been through a bit.

    "I knew my time in the game was coming to a standstill after I played my most recent match and going to the park next day, but couldn't stand up to play with my children, in pain and I was gradually declining.

    "It was coming to a stage where I could see opportunities in training and games, but my body physically, especially my hips, couldn't tell me what my mind was telling me to do."

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