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Patston at Falcons pre-season training. Photo: Rikki-Lee Arnold/QRL

No matter where Josh Patston goes, he’s the kind of guy who will never forget where he came from.

After two years of Hostplus Cup with Tweed Seagulls, Patston has this season joined the Sunshine Coast Falcons, in an exciting opportunity for the versatile backrower.

It was a move the 24-year-old believed he had to make if he ever wanted to achieve his childhood dream of playing in the NRL.

Already Patston has reaped some of the benefits of being in the Falcons system, after he took part in pre-season training with affiliate NRL club, Melbourne Storm, and played in a trial against the Sydney Roosters.

And he is loving life at the Sunshine Coast.

Patston at Falcons pre-season training. Photo: Rikki-Lee Arnold/QRL
Patston at Falcons pre-season training. Photo: Rikki-Lee Arnold/QRL

“Brad Henderson (Falcons head coach) reached out to me pretty early last year,” Patston said of his first connection to the Sunshine Coast.

“He was very keen to get me up there. I was speaking to him fairly regularly about making the transition from Tweed to Sunny Coast.

“I had a very strong connection with the boys and the club at Tweed. They gave me my first opportunity and I did think about staying there, but I just went with my gut.

“It took a bit of thinking but the decision got made fairly quickly once I put two and two together. Obviously the Melbourne Storm pre-season was a massive opportunity to better myself through a successful pathway. Once the offer was given, I didn’t hesitate.

“I just looked at the players like Nicho Hynes, Ryan Papenhuyzen, Tino Fa’asuamaleaui… all those boys played with the Falcs.

“If you look at where they are now with that pathway, it does breed successful footballers and I took a lot of that into account.

“(Sunshine Coast) is a very supportive club. Everyone there has welcomed me with open arms. It’s such a great environment. Whenever you have a question or a problem, even off field, everyone is there to help.

“It’s good meeting new players and having new friends… they’ve made the transition as easy as it can be for me. They’ve been in my corner giving me a hand every step of the way.”

But the Sunshine Coast base is not the only place Patston gets his support.

He is still close with a number of Tweed players, including Will Brimson and Brent Woolf, but also has the backing of the communities of Lismore and Alstonville in New South Wales.

Patston, who is a builder by trade and is currently doing carpentry on the Sunshine Coast, grew up in Lismore and his parents – who he credits as his greatest supporters and influences in life - now live in Alstonville.

He played all of his junior football there and was with the Marist Brothers club for more than 10 years.

Not only does the region still support him, but he gives back as much as he can, including during last year’s devastating floods.

“I grew up in Lismore, played footy there all my juniors… when the flood hit it was proper chaos down there,” he said.

“I was giving them as much of a hand as I could. I was staying in Ballina and driving to Tweed for training each week. It was a bit tough but a lot of friends and family are back on their feet now.

“Once it started to happen, the water was up and we were just working to get people out of the houses. When the water receded, we started at a street each day to help clean up.

“It was upsetting at times, ripping out people’s walls and throwing their possessions out on the road. I had a couple weeks off work and was just going from shop to shop, house to house. It was something you don’t want to happen again. It was chaos.

“But everyone that I helped, they’ve been supporting me. I was with Marist Brothers for 10-plus years.

“Seeing some of the older boys in the street or going to the hardware shop, they’d be asking me how my footy is going and I know they’re backing me 100 per cent of the way.

“I’ve never been more grateful for the community behind me. I have a very good support. They do nothing but back me. It gives me a lot of confidence going into this year.”

With his home support, plus the bonds he’s building at his new club and his NRL pre-season experience, Patston is certainly heading into season 2023 with a strong mindset.

He is joined at the Falcons by fellow new signings Corey Herdegen, Javvier Pitovao and Scott Galeano, who has also moved up the coastline from Tweed.

With the affiliation with the Storm, competition for spots at the Falcons is always fierce, but Patston not only wants to help the Sunshine Coast be the best they can be, but also put himself in the frame for an NRL contract.

“With my time in Melbourne, the biggest thing I’ve learnt is about the effort areas and the professionalism around how they go about their job,” he said.

“Everything is at 100 per cent and it’s upbeat and really fast and you have to be on the ball - from warming up to doing your extras after training, it’s all at 100 per cent.

“For me this year, I just want to keep playing consistent footy. I want to do my part at the Falcons to help them be as successful as we can be this year and then try to earn an NRL spot by 2024.

“I’m looking forward to what the future holds and one day hopefully I can live the childhood dream and throw on an NRL jersey.”

Sunshine Coast Falcons 2023 gains and losses


Jack Brock (Mackay Cutters), Josh Chappell (Parramatta Eels), Ben Farr (Wynnum Manly), Scott Galeano (Tweed Seagulls), Corey Herdegen (Wynnum Manly), Max Kirkbright (Hull KR), Josh Patston (Tweed Seagulls), Javvier Pitovao (Norths Devils), Ethan Saisoa’a (Mounties)


Grant Anderson (Melbourne Storm), Dan Atkinson (Cronulla Sharks), Taine Couper (Canberra Raiders), Ben Farr (NZ Warriors), Zac Garton (Dolphins NRL), Jake Maizen (Halifax Panthers - UK), Nat McGavin (Brisbane Tigers), Tom Rafter (Brisbane Tigers), Darryn Schonig (Western Clydesdales), Tyson Smoothy (Brisbane Broncos), William Toloi (Norths Devils), Jack Underhill (Canterbury Bulldogs), Blake Wilson (Canterbury Bulldogs)

Acknowledgement of Country

Queensland 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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