Rory Underwood

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Rory Underwood
Full name Rory Underwood
Date of birth (1963-06-19) 19 June 1963 (age 50)
Place of birth Middlesbrough, England
Height 5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight 13 st 8 lbs (86 kg)
School Barnard Castle School
Notable relative(s) Tony Underwood
Occupation(s) RAF aviator, management consultant
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Wing
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1983-1997

1997-1998
Leicester Tigers
Bedford Blues
236 (134)
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1984-1996
1989-1993
England
British and Irish Lions
85
6
(210)
(4)

Rory Underwood MBE (born 19 June 1963 in Middlesbrough, England) is a record-breaking former English rugby union footballer who played wing for, most notably, Leicester Tigers and the Royal Air Force. He represented England and the British and Irish Lions and is a former Royal Air Force pilot.

Early life[edit]

He is of Chinese-English parentage. His father was a Yorkshire engineer who worked in Malaysia where he met and married Underwood's Chinese-Malaysian mother.

Underwood was educated at Barnard Castle School (with fellow rugby international Rob Andrew and infamous MI6 officer Richard Tomlinson), followed by initial officer training at RAF College Cranwell.[1]

His early life was spent in Malaysia. His family moved to Yorkshire in 1976, but his father was posted to Singapore and did not rejoin the family for another three years.[2]

Royal Air Force[edit]

In the RAF, he played for the Strike Command and main RAF rugby team. He flew as Flying Officer Underwood with 360 Sqn, an electronic countermeasures training squadron, on Canberras at RAF Wyton in Cambridgeshire. He then flew the Hawk with 100 Sqn also at Wyton. He took a ground-instruction job in 1995 at RAF Cranwell becoming a Flight Lieutenant, whilst playing for Leicester. He became Station Flight Safety Officer, then joined 55 Sqn (navigator training, now referred to as a Weapon Systems Officer) on the twin-engined Dominie (British Aerospace 125), and continued in the RAF until 1999, although he could have stayed until 2001.

Rugby[edit]

Having first laced up his rugby boots as a youngster at Middlesbrough Rugby Club (with Rob Andrew and Bernie Coyne) he went on to become one of the greatest wings in rugby union. Underwood is the leading try scorer for England in international matches. He first played for England in February 1984 against Ireland at Twickenham. He won 85 England and 6 Lions caps between 1984 and 1996 (then an English record, later surpassed by Jason Leonard – it remains the highest total for an English back), scoring a record 49 tries for England, and 1 for the British Lions, making him one of the leading try scorers of all time.[3] He played for England in the Rugby World Cups of 1987, 1991 and 1995.

In 1992 he switched from the right to the left wing to accommodate his younger brother, Tony, in the team. They were the first brothers to represent England at the same time since 1937.[4] He is widely regarded as one of the greatest wingers to ever play the game. Many of his tries are classics and he is renowned for the ability to run as fast with the ball in hand as without.

Recent career[edit]

He has currently worked as a management consultant. When leaving the RAF he planned on setting up a company called Teamwork with his friend John Peters. He planned on acquiring a Commercial Pilot Licence.

He set up UPH, a management and teamwork training company, with John Peters and Martyn Helliwell on 20 May 1999.

Like John Peters, he is also a motivational speaker. He is on the board of Leicester FC. His new company is called Wingman Ltd,[5] formed with Dave Moss.

International tries[edit]

Try Opposing team Location Venue Competition Date Result
1  France Paris, France Parc des Princes Five Nations Championship 3 March 1984 lost
2  Ireland Dublin, Ireland Lansdowne Road Five Nations Championship 30 March 1985 lost
3  Japan Sydney, Australia Concord Oval Rugby World Cup 30 May 1987 won
4  Japan Sydney, Australia Concord Oval Rugby World Cup 30 May 1987 won
5  Ireland Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 19 March 1988 won
6  Ireland Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 19 March 1988 won
7  Ireland Dublin, Ireland Lansdowne Road Five Nations Championship 23 April 1988 won
8  Australia Brisbane, Australia Ballymore Stadium Summer Tour 29 May 1988 lost
9  Australia Sydney, Australia Concord Oval Summer Tour 12 June 1988 lost
10  Fiji Suva, Fiji National Stadium, Suva Summer Tour 16 June 1988 won
11  Fiji Suva, Fiji National Stadium, Suva Summer Tour 16 June 1988 won
12  Australia Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 5 November 1988 won
13  Australia Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 5 November 1988 won
14  Fiji Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 4 November 1989 won
15  Fiji Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 4 November 1989 won
16  Fiji Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 4 November 1989 won
17  Fiji Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 4 November 1989 won
18  Fiji Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 4 November 1989 won
19  Ireland Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 20 January 1990 won
20  France Paris, France Parc des Princes Five Nations Championship 3 February 1990 won
21  Wales Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 17 February 1990 won
22  Wales Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 17 February 1990 won
23  Argentina Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 3 November 1990 won
24  Argentina Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 3 November 1990 won
25  Argentina Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 3 November 1990 won
26  Ireland Dublin, Ireland Lansdowne Road Five Nations Championship 2 March 1991 won
27  France Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 16 March 1991 won
28  Fiji Suva, Fiji National Stadium, Suva Summer Tour 20 July 1991 won
29  Italy Twickenham, England Twickenham Rugby World Cup 8 October 1991 won
30  United States Twickenham, England Twickenham Rugby World Cup 11 October 1991 won
31  United States Twickenham, England Twickenham Rugby World Cup 11 October 1991 won
32  France Paris, France Parc des Princes Rugby World Cup 19 October 1991 won
33  Scotland Edinburgh, Scotland Murrayfield Five Nations Championship 18 January 1992 won
34  Ireland Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 1 February 1992 won
35  France Paris, France Parc des Princes Five Nations Championship 15 February 1992 won
36  Scotland Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 6 March 1993 won
37  New Zealand Wellington, New Zealand Athletic Park British Lions tour to New Zealand 26 June 1993 won
38  Wales Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 19 March 1994 won
39  Romania Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 12 November 1994 won
40  Canada Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 10 December 1994 won
41  Canada Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 10 December 1994 won
42  Wales Cardiff, Wales Cardiff Arms Park Five Nations Championship 18 February 1995 won
43  Wales Cardiff, Wales Cardiff Arms Park Five Nations Championship 18 February 1995 won
44  Italy Durban, South Africa Kings Park Stadium Rugby World Cup 31 May 1995 won
45  Samoa Durban, South Africa Kings Park Stadium Rugby World Cup 4 June 1995 won
46  Samoa Durban, South Africa Kings Park Stadium Rugby World Cup 4 June 1995 won
47  New Zealand Cape Town, South Africa Newlands Stadium Rugby World Cup 18 June 1995 lost
48  New Zealand Cape Town, South Africa Newlands Stadium Rugby World Cup 18 June 1995 lost
49  Samoa Twickenham, England Twickenham Autumn Internationals 16 December 1995 won
50  Wales Twickenham, England Twickenham Five Nations Championship 3 February 1996 won

Personal life[edit]

His wife was an air traffic controller in the RAF. He has two daughters. He has an older brother Gary, a younger brother Tony, and a sister Wendy. His brother Tony Underwood became a commercial pilot after retiring and also played rugby for England and has two daughters.

His long-lasting relationship with the RAF was put under strain when his wife was unfairly dismissed from the RAF for being pregnant, for which she received £13,000 in a compensation claim in 1995.

He lives in a small village near Grantham in Lincolnshire, having lived in the area for many years whilst at Cranwell. He has often been invited to be a local dignatory, or to play for local charity sports matches.[6] He is President of the Grantham National Malaya and Borneo Veterans Association.[7]

Publications[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ http://www.raf.mod.uk/aircadets/whoweare/famouscadets.cfm
  2. ^ Smith, Giles (28 February 1995). "Here's to you, Mrs Underwood". The Independent. Retrieved 6 April 2014. 
  3. ^ "Rory Underwood". BBC Sport. 30 September 2003. Retrieved 20 July 2012. 
  4. ^ "Rory Underwood". BBC Sport. 30 September 2003. Retrieved 20 July 2012. 
  5. ^ Wingman Ltd
  6. ^ Rory opens Grantham Barclays in April 2011
  7. ^ Grantham NMBVA

External links[edit]