One of the finest overseas players to ever play for Castleford Tigers, Grant Millington will call time on his professional rugby league career at the end of the current Betfred Super League season.
The 2021 campaign, his 10th season as a Castleford player, will be his last as a professional player as he prepares to head home to Australia with his family.
Since joining Castleford for the 2012 season from Canterbury Bulldogs, Millington has gone onto make over 240 appearances for the Tigers and holds the record for the most appearances made by an overseas player in the club’s 95-year history.
During his over-decade-long service to the Tigers, Millington has helped the club get to Wembley twice, reach the Grand Final at Old Trafford and lift the League Leader’s Shield in 2017, the year in which he was named in Super League’s Dream Team.
A talented prop forward who is skilful with the ball in hand, as has been shown when he has deputized at halfback. Millington is loved by teammates and supporters alike for his consistent efforts shown on the field.
Off the pitch, Grant has been a fantastic member of the Castleford community, with countless player appearances and lending his assistance to local charitable
Speaking about the news Millington told castlefordtigers.com: “It has been a tough decision. I still feel like I can compete and play, we had a bit of chat with the club about a few different things and it’s not sort of worked out that I will continue, but I’m also ready to head home.
“We were talking about maybe staying a bit longer and a few different things but the last thing it came down to was when we asked our kids the other day. ‘How would you feel if we moved back to Australia or stayed here?’ and they were ready to go home and be with our family. That’s the one that tipped it all over the edge and cemented everything for us. We’ve had a great time and loved being here, but it’s just the right time for us, I think.
“We’ve weighed it all up and from my point of view, this might sound silly but, I’ve been selfish long enough now, we’ve been here long enough I’ve had Amy away from her family and the kids away from their grandparents, cousins, uncles, and aunties.
“It’s been a crazy experience, when I first signed here it was for two years and we thought we’d go home and move on. People say at the start ‘It’s an adventure’ and it has definitely been that. Whilst I’m sad to see it end, it is also exciting to start the next part of our lives.
“People say that you do sacrifice your body but it’s not a sacrifice when you’ve loved it, when you are out here playing in front of a great bunch of fans and playing with a great bunch of boys.
“You grow up in the sport of rugby league and it’s about doing the little things and doing things for your teammates, to work towards a common goal. Personal sacrifices you make don’t really matter when you are trying to achieve something.
“Personally, I think I’ve been successful in what I’ve tried to do, whilst we haven’t yet won that trophy, that final goal of mine, it is still potentially in grasp, and we have to work hard for the rest of the year.”
Castleford Tigers Head Coach Daryl Powell commented on the news of Millington calling time on his career at the end of the 2021 season and said: “As a rugby league player, Grant is one of the most intelligent and knowledgeable people I have come across, his opinion and understanding of the game is second to none.
“On top of that his skillset, his communication, and his ability to play in different positions shows his class. I think he has been absolutely phenomenal as a voice in the team and a consistent performer for Castleford. He has been one of the best during my time at the club, and I would like to thank him for everything he has done.
“He’s such a consistent family and rugby man, a diamond of a bloke.
“In terms of overseas players for Castleford, there is not many who have stayed as long as he has. It is a long time to stay in another country, generally, most would want to go home. For me, he would be one of, if not, the best overseas players Cas has had because he has been superb over all the years that he has been at the club.”