Born: 27 March, 1975
Test record: 1 Test (1996) – 0 points
Rangy centre Anthony Swann represented New Zealand Samoa at Test level during a premiership career that spanned six seasons and three clubs.
Swann played for Waitakere City Raiders in the inaugural 1994 Lion Red Cup before forging a spot in Auckland Warriors’ stacked reserve grade line-up during 1995.
The 21-year-old schoolteacher broke into first grade with some impressive showings in Auckland Warriors’ backline late in 1996, scoring three tries in nine outings. After featuring in a New Zealand XIII’s upset of Great Britain, Swann was a surprise choice on the bench – accompanying his cousin and clubmate, Logan Swann, who had debuted earlier in the series – for the Kiwis in the third Test against the touring Lions but played his part in a 32-12 cleansweep-clinching victory in Christchurch.
Swann was a permanent fixture in first grade in 1997, playing every game for the Warriors in their Super League season. He was selected at fullback for both of New Zealand’s Super League Tri-Series fixtures against Queensland and New South Wales and gave a good account of himself in hard-fought losses.
After a disappointing season for the Warriors in 1998, Swann moved across the Tasman to link with North Sydney. The move yielded just eight first grade appearances in 1999 but Swann grabbed a piece of history by scoring a try in the Bears’ last-ever premiership match.
Norths’ merger with Manly saw Swann sign with Canberra for 2000 and he proved a handy buy, scoring six tries from 17 appearances and winning selection in Samoa’s World Cup at the end of the season. Swann started in the centres in all four of the nation’s matches in the tournament, including the quarter-final loss to Australia. Swann left the Raiders midway through 2001 to join Warrington, where he played three games late in the season.
Following a code switch with the Bay of Plenty rugby union side in 2002, Swann returned to Auckland and turned out for Mt Albert Lions in the Bartercard Cup.