|Full name||Benedict James Kay|
|Date of birth||14 December 1975|
|Place of birth||Liverpool, England|
|Height||6 ft 6 in (1.98 m)|
|Weight||18 st 1 lb (120 kg)|
|School||Merchant Taylors' School, Crosby|
|Notable relative(s)||Sir John Kay (father)|
|Rugby union career|
|Years||Club / team|
|Loughborough Students RUFC|
|Professional / senior clubs|
|Years||Club / team||Caps||(points)|
|correct as of 9 June 2010.|
|Years||Club / team||Caps||(points)|
British and Irish Lions
|correct as of 14 June 2009.|
Kay was born in Liverpool, the son of Lord Justice of Appeal Sir John William Kay (1943–2004), which later earned him the nickname "M'lud". Kay first started playing rugby for Waterloo minis going on to play for the Waterloo first team.
Kay played for his school (Merchant Taylors' School, Crosby) and has also played for Queensland University. He represented England in the 1996 Students World Cup in South Africa and at U18, U19 and U21 level. He attended Loughborough University, where he obtained a degree in Sports Science.
Kay joined Leicester Tigers from Waterloo in 1999 and first played during the World Cup, with Tigers' normal Second rows Martin Johnson and Fritz van Heerden away with England and South Africa respectively. With the help of Johnson and van Heerden, he developed his game, becoming a highly-rated middle line-out jumper, like van Heerden. He was a member of Tigers' Heineken Cup winning sides in 2001 and 2002 as his international career blossomed.
Having made his England A début against France A in Blagnac in 2000 Kay led England A to a 23–22 win over France A at Redruth in April 2001, and was called up for England’s successful tour of North America and Japan that summer. He made his England début against Canada on 2 June 2001 displacing Danny Grewcock from the England side.
After another outstanding season he was named as the Tigers Members' Player of the Year 2001/2, and was a nominee for the Zurich Premiership Player of the Year. He was in the starting line-up for all the Six Nations games in 2002, and scored a try against Ireland. After touring with England to Argentina in the summer of 2002, where he scored his second try, Kay went on to compete in both the Autumn internationals and the Six Nations, before touring to New Zealand and Australia in June 2003.
Kay confirmed his status as a core part of the England squad in the World Cup when he played every minute of every England game except the game against Uruguay. His line-out skills came to the fore here, particularly during the games against South Africa, when Kay learned to count to ten in Afrikaans in order to crack the Springboks' line-out codes. During the final against Australia, Kay famously knocked-on (dropped the ball forwards) in a try-scoring position when a try would have almost certainly meant an England win. Fortunately for him, England won regardless, partly as a result of Tigers' team-mate Lewis Moody winning a line-out Kay himself had called.
Sir Clive Woodward selected him for the 2005 British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand. Kay came off the bench against Argentina in an official Test prior to the tour. Kay started in the first Test of the series.
He was the only player to play every minute of England's 2007 Rugby World Cup campaign culminating in their narrow loss in the Final. He was one of only four players to have started both the 2003 and 2007 RWC Finals, the other three being Jonny Wilkinson, Jason Robinson and Phil Vickery.
He started both the 2008–09 Heineken Cup final and the Guinness Premiership win the same season. The Tigers won back-to-back Premiership titles the following season, in the 2009–10 Guinness Premiership, by beating Saracens 33–27 at Twickenham, though Kay did not feature in that game. He decided to retire at the end of the 2009–10 season after 11 years with Leicester Tigers, and will go on to become a commentator for ESPN in the 2010–11 season.
Kay paid his respects to his former sports teacher at Merchant Taylors, Ian 'Robbo' Robinson, who died in a white water rafting incident whilst on a rugby tour with the school.
||This article includes a list of references, but its sources remain unclear because it has insufficient inline citations. (February 2009)|
- "Sir John Kay obituary". London: The Telegraph. 6 July 2004. Retrieved 2009-03-16.
- All you need to know about tonight's teams from The Guardian
- "European glory seals Leicester treble". BBC. 2001-05-19. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- Moore, Jonathon (2002-05-25). "Tigers retain European Cup". BBC. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- Lyon, Sam (2001-06-02). "Lewsey shines as England pack punch". London: Telegraph. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Awesome England brush Ireland aside". BBC. 2002-02-16. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Argentina beaten by England youngsters". BBC. 2002-06-22. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Ben Kay: The Codebreaker". London: Daily Mail. 2007-10-16. Retrieved 2010-06-09.
- Evans, Mark (2003-11-23). "Boring England? Not nearly boring enough". London: Independent. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Wilkinson left out of Lions squad". BBC. 2005-04-11. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "Lions 25–25 Argentina". BBC. 2005-05-23. Archived from the original on 23 May 2009. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- "New Zealand 21–3 Lions". BBC. 2005-06-25. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- Standley, James (2007-10-20). "World Cup final 2007". BBC. Archived from the original on 26 June 2009. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- Gordos, Phil (2008-03-15). "Six Nations 2008". BBC. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- Foy, Chris (31 May 2010). "Tigers pounce to give Lewis Moody a victorious send off". London: Daily Mail. Retrieved 7 June 2010.
- "Kay announces retirement". Leicester Mercury website. 2010-06-09. Retrieved 2010-06-09.
- "Leicester Tigers star Ben Kay delighted to be back in England set-up". this is leicestershire. 2009-06-05. Retrieved 2009-07-01.
- Barrett, Tony (!8 October 2007). "England hero Ben Kay’s debt to Mr Robinson". Liverpool Echo. Retrieved 2009-03-16.
- Tigers profile
- England profile
- Ben Kay photo 1 by sportingheroes.net
- Ben Kay photo 2 by sportingheroes.net