Danny Wicks looks set to make one of the most unlikely sporting comebacks in Australia’s history. The ex-Dragons’ and Knights’ prop will have his contract with the NRL officially registered next month. But he has already been snapped up by the Parramatta Eels in a one-year deal.
What makes this story incredible is that Wicks hasn’t played a first grade game in more than three years – after being jailed for drug trafficking.
In September 2011 Wicks was charged with eight drug-related offences. He pleaded guilty to a further three counts of supplying prohibited substances.
The judge remanded him to a maximum three years jail.
The ban imposed by the NRL ended in September 2014. The Parramatta football club swooped and spent the final months of the year negotiating with Wicks.
He’ll be on a short leash. The club and league have imposed strict conditions, none offering with a second chance.
Steve Gills, Wicks’ manager, told reporters for The Daily Telegraph that Wicks has been training hard since June.
“Danny has been training with the team and was in rehab with a hamstring injury prior to the break, but he is going well.
“He doesn’t have a contract registered with the NRL, but we are hoping to have it sorted in the next two to four weeks, hopefully.”
Wicks has used his time in Glen Innes jail well. He has lost 20kg but added significant muscle to his already gigantic frame. He has trained well, impressing coaching staff and players alike. Best of all, he appears to have lost none of his speed and skills.