ANTHONY Watmough was once regarded as the NRL’s perennial bad boy – then his wife Elle stepped into the picture and changed his focused.
Reflecting on his wild attitude as a young man, the Manly backrower admitted he was caught up in the wrong groups and distracted, which led to a string of off-field incidents.
He lost his driver’s licence for speeding and was involved in an incident where he was caught by police urinating on a shop front in Manly.
There was an alleged incident where Watmough harassed a club sponsor’s daughter and then punched the sponsor at the club’s 2009 season launch.
He was so wild representative coaches were reluctant to select him in their teams but the 30-year-old has left that life behind him and is focused on the important things – his family.
“I probably had that mindset where I didn’t really care,” Watmough said on NRL Pre-season.
“Now I look back and I think, ‘Wow.’ I was just getting caught up in the wrong little groups and not looking at the big picture - not setting up my family and not taking care of my family enough and I think that’s when my wife (Elle) stepped into the picture.
“It was more about looking after us and getting us right and moving forward and not worrying about the past.”
Having turned his life around, the Test star is now part of the NRL’s anti-bullying initiative.
The father of two – son Jake and daughter Claudia – is now dedicated to sending a positive message and trying to right his past wrongs.
“I was a youngster at school and I saw someone getting bullied and I didn’t speak up,” he revealed.
“It still haunts me to this day that I never spoke up. One thing I try to teach my son is to always look after the people smaller than you and people more vulnerable. It’s a great program and I’ll stick with it as long as I can.”