A modest profile belies the importance Wilkshire brings to the team with his reliability, plus an allround playing scope which allows him to fill a variety of positions. Tenacious and hard working, he will most likely be utilised at right full-back where he is not only dependable but has the capacity to regularly push forward and support the attack. Starting out as midfielder, Wilkshire still sometimes features in the middle of the park, and has done on a number of occasions for Australia, though mostly in the absence of regular midfielders.
Wilkshire’s career took off at the 2006 FIFA World Cup™ and although expected to be very much a squad player, he started in the opening match against Japan, and then in the Round of 16 encounter with eventual world champions Italy. Legendary FIFA World Cup coach Guus Hiddink plucked Wilkshire from the relative obscurity of Bristol City to join the Australian squad at Germany 2006, describing him as a “modern player, technically very good”.
Though having debuted for Australia two years prior, Wilkshire’s international career boomed and he has become a permanent fixture in the squad, and generally in the starting line-up. He played at the 2007 AFC Asian Cup and featured in 11 of 14 qualifying matches for South Africa 2010.
On the back of his performances at Germany 2006, Wilkshire joined FC Twente with his time in the Netherlands capped by helping the Eredivisie side claim a first-ever place in UEFA Champions League. In 2008, Wilkshire made a successful transition to Dinamo Moscow, where he became the first Australian to play in the Russian Premier League.