Geoff Cross

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Geoff Cross
Full name Geoffrey Dominic Legend Sebastian Cross
Date of birth (1982-12-11) 11 December 1982 (age 32)
Place of birth Edinburgh, Scotland
Height 1.85 m (6 ft 1 in)
Weight 116 kg (256 lb; 18 st 4 lb)
School Galashiels Academy
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Tighthead Prop
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
Border Reivers
London Irish
correct as of 24 January 2015.
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
Scotland A
correct as of 21 March 2015.

Geoff Cross (born 11 December 1982) is a Scottish rugby union player who plays prop at tight-head for London Irish and Scotland. He is also a qualified doctor.



Geoff entered professional rugby when he joined Border Reivers in 2003 from Heriot’s after having played for Scotland under-21 that year, including being at tight-head in the team who beat England 33-22 at Newbury in the final match of the age group’s world championship.

In December 2006 he moved from the Borders Reivers to Edinburgh on loan until the end of the season, and his debut for the capital city’s team followed later that month in the Magners League game against Glasgow Warriors at Hughenden. The move was made permanent after Cross's ten appearances during the 2006/07 season. He continued to play an increasingly prominent role in the Edinburgh set up and was called up to the Scotland squad for their tour of Argentina in 2008.

He continued to play at Edinburgh until midway through the 2013-14 season, when he was loaned to rivals Glasgow Warriors following an emergency request due to front-row injuries at the Warriors. The departure of Cross, a crowd favourite, to a league rival while Edinburgh were struggling for form and results was an unpopular move with the fans at Murrayfield.

His loan to Warriors lasted to the end of the season where he signed for Aviva Premiership side London Irish once his contract with Edinburgh expired.


Cross was selected for the Scotland squad for the 2009 Six Nations Championship. His debut match against Wales ended prematurely when he was sin-binned for a tackle in the air on full-back Lee Byrne. Cross was carried off with horrific self-inflicted head injuries. Many people found this ironic as Cross is a qualified doctor. He did not play for the rest of Scotland's campaign. He has since returned for Edinburgh but was not included in new coach Andy Robinson's squad for the 2009 Autumn Tests. Despite being involved in the Scotland set up, including being selected for the victorious tour of Argentina in 2010, he did not add to his caps during the remainder of 2010.

He was once again called up for the 2011 Six Nations Championship, making appearances against England, Ireland and Italy, and has been regularly involved during Scotland's subsequent campaigns.


For a period of over a year during 2014 and 2015, Cross grew a beard of epic magnitude. He was encouraged to cultivate during a loan spell at Glasgow Warriors by team-mate – and similarly-bearded wonder – Josh Strauss:

I was at Glasgow for ten weeks last season and I talked to Josh Strauss, and he said, ‘You know, Geoff, you say that after rugby you’re going to work as a medic, and I see you haven’t shaved for a few days – really I don’t think very many people would be happy if they went to a GP practice to talk about their sore back, looking to be reassured, and there was this man with this enormous beard. So really, this is the only time in your life that you’ve got to grow a beard. You should seize that opportunity.

The hirsute prop's face was eventually shaved by London Irish teammates on the last day of March 2015 (much to the delight of his wife, Helen), having raised over £10,000 for the Wooden Spoon charity.[1]


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