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In the spotlight: Darcy Turner

Norths Devils is Darcy Turner’s home away from home.

The 19-year-old forward was born and raised in Proserpine, a rural town in north Queensland, where he discovered and developed his rugby league with the Proserpine Brahmans.

But in 2020, Turner moved to southeast Queensland where he started boarding at Nudgee College and joined the Devils in a bid to strengthen his game.

And for the former school vice-captain, Norths and Brisbane quickly became his adopted home.

“I did three years at Nudgee and played a bit of rugby union there,” Turner said of moving south.

“It was different but I still learnt a lot and it’s a great program there.

“Then coming into Norths Devils, they helped me out a lot.

“All my junior stuff was with the Proserpine Brahmans but I did (Auswide Bank Mal Meninga Cup) for two years with the Devils.

“Moving here, it was mainly for opportunity. My parents are always willing to sacrifice anything to get me better opportunities.

“I’d never put down Proserpine, I love my little town, but for my education and sporting, I feel like coming down to the big smoke was a good move for me.

“Obviously I sacrificed a lot moving away from home but I took a lot out of moving away and coming to Nudgee, it’s a great school.

“I got the education I needed to move forward. Sporting as well, it’s been huge for me.”

Darcy Turner. Photo: Rikki-Lee Arnold/QRL
Darcy Turner. Photo: Rikki-Lee Arnold/QRL

It’s no surprise then that after a pre-season with the North Queensland Cowboys, Turner decided to return back to Brisbane and Norths earlier this year for the Hastings Deering Colts.

After three years in the Cowboys development systems, Turner took plenty of  valuable knowledge and experience from his training and exposure.

But, in what was his third home in three years, it didn’t feel quite right on the personal level.

“At the start of this year, I spent about three or four months up in Townsville doing a pre-season with the Cowboys,” he said.

“I definitely learnt a lot from that and met a good bunch of boys but I’m back down here now.

“There’s familiar faces down here. Moving around for me, it’s a lot. Coming here the first time, leaving family, that was huge. Then going back to Townsville, while it is closer to home, it’s a new bunch of faces.

“I’ve never lived in Townsville before so I felt a little home sick. I was home sick from Proserpine and home sick from Brisbane, so there was a bit of that behind it.

“Coming back under (coach Shayne Boyd), I thought I’d get more minutes in the Colts competition.”

And not only is Turner feeling right at home once again in the blues and gold of Norths, but he also works at the leagues club.

On a self-proclaimed “gap year”, Turner hopes to one day study occupational therapy and doesn’t really mind where his football takes him – he’s just along for the ride.

But one thing he does know this season is, he’s very happy being back at Norths, working and playing for the club that took him in three years ago.

“I’m behind the bar there and I love all the locals, they’re in here pretty well every day and they love me and come watch me every now and then,” Turner said of the leagues club.

“On a Sunday or Monday night when I go in for a shift they’re always critiquing my game and telling me what I can do better and where I need to work and what I’ve done well in.

“Being part of the leagues club and this club… it’s very family-orientated. Me not having any direct family down here in Brisbane, other than my brother who is in boarding school, I thought, ‘why not stick around the familiar faces and people that want to have me around’.”

Turner will come off the bench for the Devils Colts this Sunday, when they take on Tweed Seagulls at home at Bishop Park.

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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