Minichiello admits he’s likely to retire after this season: as he prepares for 400th career game

Mark Minichiello admits a double with Hull FC is the ideal way to round off his career, after revealing he’s likely to retire at the end of this season.

The 37-year-old’s contract with the Black and Whites expires in just a few months. And after five seasons with the club, Minichiello told League Express he is increasingly certain this season will be his last as a player, after having made his debut in the NRL all the way back in 2002.

When asked if this season could be his swansong, Minichiello said: “I think so, potentially.

“You know when it’s time as a player, and we’ll see what happens. But mentally, more than anything, the family and I are ready to head back and start a new chapter. That decision is coming pretty soon, I think.”

Minichiello and Hull further solidified their position inside the play-off places with victory at Castleford last Thursday. With a semi-final in the Challenge Cup still to come next month too, the forward admits he’s targeting two pieces of major silverware this season to round off his time as a Hull player.

He said: “We can definitely do something special. We’re in the semis of the Challenge Cup and running third in the league, so if we can keep performing consistently, we can do something. I’d like to finish with a double – that would be an unbelievable way to finish a long but enjoyable career.”

Minichiello also brings up a significant milestone this weekend, when Hull travel to Catalans – as it will be his 400th career game.

“I’ve been made aware of that recently,” he said. “It’s a massive milestone, to get to 400 games, especially playing the majority of those in Australia.

“I still feel good, despite the number of games. It’s a big achievement and I’m very happy to be able to get the chance to play 400, because not many do.

“I still feel good, despite the number of games. My body is holding up well, though mentally at times it can be tough to get yourself up. I train in pretty much every session and play the majority of the games, and think I’ve looked after myself well enough to get to this milestone.”