|Full name||Neil Roger Jenkins|
|Date of birth||8 July 1971|
|Place of birth||Church Village, Wales|
|Height||5 ft 10 in (1.78 m)|
|Weight||13 st 8 lbs (86 kg)|
|School(s) attended||Bryn Celynnog Comprehensive school|
|Youth representative teams|
|Representative teams coached|
* Professional club appearances and points
Neil Jenkins MBE (born 8 July 1971) is a former rugby union football player and current coach. He played fly-half, centre, or full back for Pontypridd, Cardiff, Celtic Warriors, Wales and the British and Irish Lions. Jenkins is Wales' highest ever points-scorer and is the third highest on the List of leading Rugby union Test point scorers. He was the first player to score 1,000 points in international matches.
Early life 
Jenkins first came to note as a rugby player when he joined Pontypridd in 1990, making his First XV debut on the 14th April. He made his Wales debut aged 19 along with Scott Gibbs on 19 January 1991 against England during the Five Nations Championship in Cardiff, a game that Wales lost 25–6. Despite a relatively uninteresting match Jenkins had the consolation of scoring his first three points thanks to a penalty. After the Five Nations campaign, Jenkins missed out on a place in the Welsh World Cup squad – the number ten position having been taken up by Mark Ring.
Jenkins' main strength was his kicking, although he was deceptively quick in his early career. Despite this, he still received tremendous criticism and many felt that he was not worthy enough to inherit the Welsh number 10 shirt of Barry John, Phil Bennett and Cliff Morgan, leading Jenkins to tailor his game to the demands of the modern game. He developed his tackling, passing and running skills, especially under the coaching of Graham Henry, and became an excellent distributor of the ball, notably his excellent flat passes, and also a strong runner. After just 28 test matches for Wales, he became the nation's record points-scorer.
Jenkins went on the 1997 British Lions tour to South Africa, playing full back in all three tests. His extremely accurate goalkicking enabled the Lions to beat the Springboks during the first two tests, and thus secure the series 2–1.
In the final match of the 1999 Five Nations Championship, Jenkins famously kicked a conversion in the dying moments of the game to beat England 32–31 at Wembley in one of the most memorable games in the history of the tournament. This would deny their English counterparts the title as Scotland won on points difference, with Wales finishing in third.
In October 2000, Jenkins was given an MBE for services to sport. He famously picked up the MBE from Buckingham Palace before being flown back to the Welsh capital by helicopter for a rugby match in which he scored all 24 points for Cardiff in their 24–14 win over Saracens.
In 2001, Jenkins became the first ever player in the history of the game to break the 1,000 international points mark with a 28-point haul featuring a Full House of a try, conversion, drop-goal, and penalty against France in Paris.
Jenkins also went on the 2001 British and Irish Lions tour to Australia, but was carrying an injury, allowing English fly-half Jonny Wilkinson to become the preferred fly-half and goalkicker. However, Jenkins did gain his fourth Lions cap as a late replacement in the second test.
Kicking always remained his major strength – in the 2003/4 season, he was successful with 44 consecutive kicks at goal for his regional side, the now defunct Celtic Warriors. This is a world record that many people believe will never be beaten.
During his 87 caps for Wales he scored 1,049 points (11 tries, 130 conversions, 235 penalties and 10 drop goals) and a further 41 points (1 conversion and 13 penalties) during his 4 caps for the British and Irish Lions for a grand total of 1,090 points. He retired as the only player to score over 1,000 points in international rugby. Jenkins' world record was subsequently broken by Jonny Wilkinson.
Jenkins was left out of Wales' 2003 World Cup squad and subsequently announced his retirement from international rugby after an 11 year career. His final match for Wales was on 1 November 2002 in Wrexham against Romania, with Wales winning easily 40–3.
Despite the early public criticism, Jenkins has established himself as one of the most recognisable figures in Welsh rugby and many rugby fans hold him in extremely high regard. Although he is no longer the leading points scorer in Test history, he is still considered to be one of the most accomplished goalkickers in both rugby codes.
Coaching career 
In the autumn of 2004 Jenkins returned to the Welsh Rugby Union in the capacity of Kicking Skills Coach, working with the then newly formed WRU Academies to improve the future generations of outside halves. In the summer of 2006 he returned to the National Squad set up as Skills Coach, where he first worked for Gareth Jenkins during the 2007 Rugby World Cup campaign and now subsequently Warren Gatland's new-look management team.
The British and Irish Lions 
Off the Field 
In 1999, Jenkins released his autobiography: Life at number 10: An Autobiography with freelance journalist Paul Rees just a matter of weeks before breaking the International points scoring record. The book was republished in 2001 by Mainstream Publishing.
Also, on 10 November 2003 a DVD was released as a tribute to the Ginger Monster. Called Jenks – A Rugby Legend, the DVD tells the story of Jenkins from his start as a working class boy in the Welsh Valleys to the pinnacle as the most respected number 10 in world rugby.
In honour of Jenkins' Testimonial career, the famous Grogg Shop in Pontypridd made a "Limited Edition Testimonial Action" Grogg of Jenkins. Wanting to make something special for the occasion, the Grogg was the first ever to stand on just one leg and took over 6 months to create. Only 100 were made, all of which were hand-painted in a variety of rugby kits – only three of which were in the Lions jersey, one owned by Jenkins, one by his mother and the other by Mike Donald of Ebbw Vale who bought the Grogg at an auction for £4,100.
See also 
- BBC Wales Hall of Fame
- Neil Jenkins playing profile Pontypridd RFC
- Sporting Heroes
- "The Ginger Monster bows out" by Bryn Palmer for BBC Sport
- Neil Jenkins, Paul Rees – Life at number 10: An Autobiography, published by Mainstream Publishing, 1998, ISBN 1-84018-245-8