Donaghy named a Sport Newcastle rising star

Sport Newcastle’s 41st annual awards evening saw Thunder’s Alex Donaghy amongst the regional sporting talent recognised for their achievements over the last year, at a gala dinner held at Newcastle civic centre.

The 16-year-old shone throughout the 2017 season both with Thunder’s academy and his community club Cramlington Rockets, with the standard of his performances seeing the player from Morpeth debut for England Youth against Wales in Cardiff and play several times for the academy side of current Super League Champions, Leeds Rhinos.

Thunder general manager Jordan Robinson, who also coaches Donaghy at Rockets said: “We’re really proud of Alex and his family. They’ve all made a big commitment, particularly when Alex had to travel to Leeds every week for training so to see him recognised as one of the finest talents the region means a lot to everyone that has been involved in his journey so far.

“He’s hard-working, disciplined and humble. There’s a long way to go but there’s no reason why he can’t make it at the highest level.  It just shows that rugby league in the North East has the talent coming through and it is up to the whole game to make sure that Alex is the first of many to recognised like this in the coming years.”

Sport Newcastle has a long history of supporting athletes and clubs in the Tyne & Wear and wider area and counts Olympic champion and world record holding triple jumper Jonathan Edwards, former Newcastle United striker Alan Shearer and Sir John Hall amongst its ambassadors.

Over the years, alumni of its Rising Stars award have accumulated numerous national and Olympic titles and reached the highest level of the international or professional game in their respective sports.

For more information on Sport Newcastle and its work in support of aspiring athletes in the region, visit