Super deal for rising Melbourne Rebels star
JUST over 12 months ago Matt Gibbon was an unsigned rugby union player who was invited to trial on a training contract with Super Rugby side the Melbourne Rebels.
Fast forward to now and the Wollongbar-Alstonville product has inked a deal which will keep him at the club until the end of the 2022 season.
Gibbon, 24, has played 20 straight games since his debut in the first round last year and is firmly established in the Melbourne forward pack.
He was one of a handful of non-contracted players who came out of the National Rugby Championships in 2018 who the Rebels took an interest in.
It's been a rapid rise for the front-rower who has already attended a Wallabies training camp in July.
"I'm extremely happy to continue playing for the Melbourne Rebels, the club that gave me my first start in Super Rugby," Gibbon said.
"I have a great attachment to Melbourne, it's people and the rugby community.
"The fans have welcomed me here as one of their own and it's made the transition into professional rugby so much easier."
His older brother Alex Gibbon played Australian rugby sevens and a handful of Super Rugby games with the Queensland Reds before moving back to the Far North Coast a few years ago.
Both played all their junior rugby at Wollongbar-Alstonville before finishing high school at St Josephs Nudgee College in Brisbane.
Matt first caught the eye of selectors when he was playing for Southern Districts in Sydney's Shute Shield competition.
"Matt is the ultimate competitor and someone who continues to raise the bar on and off the field with his relentless work ethic," Rebels chief exeuctive Baden Stephenson said.
"He's an exceptional teammate ‒ selfless, passionate, humble and a huge part of the culture we're trying to build.
"Matt had a phenomenal debut season with us last year playing every game and I have no doubt he'll play an important role in our push for Super Rugby success in years to come.
"We believe Matt has the potential to strive for national honours."
Former Lismore junior Izack Rodda made his Super Rugby debut at the Reds three years ago and is now a starting second-rower for the Wallabies.