James Roby

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James Roby
James Roby.jpg
Personal information
Born (1985-11-22) 22 November 1985 (age 31)[1]
Whiston, Merseyside, England
Height 5 ft 11 in (180 cm)[2]
Weight 14 st 2 lb (90 kg)[2]
Playing information
Position Hooker
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2004– St. Helens 378 90 1 0 362
Years Team Pld T G FG P
2006–07 Great Britain 7 1 0 0 4
2008–15 England 25 5 0 0 20
As of 31 March 2017

James Roby (born 22 November 1985 in Whiston, Merseyside) is an English professional rugby league footballer for St. Helens of Super League. A Great Britain and England international representative hooker, he has played his entire professional career to date at St Helens, winning 2006's and 2014's Super League Championships with them and the Challenge Cup in 2006, 2007 and 2008. Individually, he has been named to the Super League Dream Team on five occasions, won the 2014 Harry Sunderland Trophy and was the 2007 Man of Steel.


Roby attended Cowley Language College from 1997-2002 then went on to the Sixth Form. He also went on to Liverpool John Moores University studying sports science but dropped out in his first year to concentrate on his rugby. He played for the North West Counties Under 18s.

Playing career[edit]


Roby made his début in 2004 against Widnes after progressing through the academy ranks at St Helens. Roby's position is usually as a hooker and has plenty of experience already, playing alongside some of the greats of the game including Keiron Cunningham. Roby has made a massive impact for St. Helens and has played over 50 games for them. In 2005's Super League X, he was narrowly beaten to the Young Player of The Year. St Helens see James as one of the brighter prospects and he seems a perfect replacement for Keiron Cunningham when he retires, so much so that St. Helens were willing to allow Mickey Higham to leave the club and Roby was given a more active role in the team.

Roby playing for St Helens in 2010

Roby played for St Helens from the interchange bench in their 2006 Challenge Cup Final victory against Huddersfield. St Helens reached the 2006 Super League Grand final to be contested against Hull F.C. and Roby played from the interchange bench in Saints' 26-4 victory. He was rewarded for his form by being called up to the 2006 Tri Nations squad and he made his international début during the tour against Australia and New Zealand.

As 2006 Super League champions, St Helens faced 2006 NRL Premiers the Brisbane Broncos in the 2007 World Club Challenge. Roby played at hooker in the Saints' 18-14 victory.

Roby holds the honour of scoring the first try at the new Wembley Stadium, scored during St Helens' victory over Catalans Dragons in the Challenge Cup Final on 25 August 2007. Roby also won the 'Man of Steel' award in October 2007 after being judged to have had the most impact on 2008's Super League XIII season, being the youngest player to ever win the award, and also becoming the third St Helens player in a row to win the accolade from 2005–07, with Jamie Lyon (2005) and Paul Wellens (2006) winning the award previously.

He played in the 2008's Super League XIII Grand Final defeat by Leeds.[3] Roby was selected for the England squad to compete in the 2008 Rugby League World Cup tournament in Australia.[4] Group A's first match against Papua New Guinea he played at hooker and was named the man-of-the-match in England's victory.


He was selected to play for England against France in the one-off test in 2010.[5]

He was a member of the squad which lost in the 2011 Rugby League Four Nations Final.[6] He was also a member of the England squad which lost in the 2013 Rugby League World Cup semi-final.[7]

Despite being linked with moves to the NRL,[8] Roby committed his long-term future to St. Helens in 2013 by signing a 5-year contract with the club.[9]

St. Helens reached the 2014 Super League Grand Final and Roby was selected to play at hooker, putting in a Man-of-the-Match performance to claim the Harry Sunderland Trophy in their 14-6 victory over Wigan.[10]

At the end of the 2015 domestic season, Roby was selected in Steve McNamara's 24-man squad to take on New Zealand in an end-of-year test-series. 8 days before the first test against the Kiwis, England took on France in a test match. Roby scored two of England's 15 tries in their romp over their opponents.[11]


  1. ^ Stott, Julie (6 October 2010). "England Four Nations Pen Pics". News of the World. UK: News Group Newspapers Ltd. Retrieved 6 October 2010. 
  2. ^ a b "James Roby". englandrl.co.uk. Retrieved 26 July 2015. 
  3. ^ "2008 Grand Final". BBC. 2008-10-04. Retrieved 2008-10-05. 
  4. ^ "Purdham earns World Cup call-up". BBC. 2008-10-07. Retrieved 2008-10-07. 
  5. ^ Hadfield, Dave (2010-06-13). "Widdop passes his first Test at a canter". The Independent. UK: Independent Print Limited. Retrieved 2010-07-08. 
  6. ^ [1]
  7. ^ [2]
  8. ^ [3]
  9. ^ [4]
  10. ^ Cartwright, Phil (11 October 2014). "St Helens v Wigan as it happened". BBC Sport. BBC. Retrieved 12 October 2014. 
  11. ^ "England demolish France 84-4 in record win". Skysports.com. Retrieved 24 October 2015. 

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