SaberCats’ Nathan ‘Moose’ Den Hoedt hits 50th cap milestone

Jun 7, 2024 | Uncategorized

By Aaron Wilson

A towering sturdy presence on the rugby field, Nathan Den Hoedt is one of the most imposing players in Major League Rugby.
Nicknamed “Moose,” Den Hoedt has provided a physical, heady presence for the past two seasons for the Houston SaberCats.
At 6-foot-6, 255 pounds, the 27-year-old lock has ideal size and experience.
A veteran of Major League Rugby who earned his 50th Cap this season, Den Hoedt provides leadership and experience.
“Having ‘Moose’ as cappy, he has judgment on calls and we back him 100 percent and trust his judgment,” Dominic Akina said. “His game play is really good. It helps to have a big guy like him for our line outs and scrums. He really pushes us to be better. He’s nonstop moving for 80 minutes. To have big guys like that moving for us smaller guys, there’s no complaints.”
Leadership has been paramount for the 11-1 SaberCats’ success from the players to director Heyneke Meyer and coach Pote Human.
“Absolutely, there’s a quite a few of us all buying into the same thing,” Den Hoedt said. “We have multiple leaders on this team, all buying in. We all work well together.”
Utah Warriors x Houston Sabercats, Saturday, May 4, 2024.
And his accomplishments were recognized by the SaberCats as Den Hoedt and the Western Conference division leaders celebrated his 50th Cap milestone.
The career achievement provides a touchstone for how Den Hoedt contributes to a first-place squad.
One year after the former Australian rugby union player joined the SaberCats, the team has won at least 10 games each of the past two seasons.
“It means a lot,” Den Hoedt said. “Fifty games is no small feat. I’m just happy to play one. To get to 50, it’s quite special.”
He signed previously with LA Giltinis in 2021 after playing for a national rugby championship for Brisbane City and NSW Country Eagles.
The SaberCats made it to the playoffs last season.
They’ve set their ambitions on winning the shield this season.
“We’re building nicely,” Den Hoedt said. “We’re not getting ahead of ourselves. We’re taking it game by game.”
Utah Warriors x Houston Sabercats, Saturday, May 4, 2024.
Den Hoedt played 987 minutes in 14 starts in 2023 for the SaberCats. 
He played 841 minutes in 16 starts with one try in 2022 for LA. He had 13 starts with one try in 1,107 minutes and 16 matches in 2021
The Brisbane native from Queensland, Australia has also played for Sunnybank, the Randwick Rugby Club and was a team captain in the Shute Shield.
He has instilled leadership into the SaberCats this season again.
“I think this year, in particular, I’ve had more of a leadership role than anything,” Den Hoedt said. “I haven’t played as many games as past season because we have such a strong squad. 
“It’s all about the team and what’s best for the team. Any given week, it can be your chance to contribute more.”