Matt Smith (rugby union)

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Matt Smith
Matt Smith crop.jpg
Birth nameMatthew William Smith
Date of birth (1985-11-15) 15 November 1985 (age 34)
Place of birthLeicester, England
Height1.93 m (6 ft 4 in)
Weight98 kg (15 st 6 lb) [1]
SchoolOakham School
Notable relative(s)Ian "Dosser" Smith (father)
Rugby union career
Position(s) Centre
Current team Leicester Tigers
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
2006–2019 Leicester Tigers 228 (150)
2006–2008 Nottingham (loan) 34 (72)
2006–2019 Total 262 (222)
Correct as of 19 May 2019
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
2009 England Saxons 1 (5)

Matthew William Smith (born 15 November 1985)[2] is an English rugby union coach and a retired professional rugby union player. Smith has played 228 games for Leicester between 2006 and 2019. He played in winning Premiership Finals in 2009, 2010 and 2013, and has also won the Anglo-Welsh Cup in 2012 and 2017. He primary position was centre but he also played wing.

Career[edit]

Smith made his Tigers début against the Barbarians in March 2006 and, by the close of the 2006/07 season, had played on a further three occasions for the first team. Smith has been a regular member of Tigers’ successful Development XV over the past two seasons, where his versatility has seen him excel at centre, full-back or fly-half. He scored his first senior try last season, crossing during the friendly encounter with Marcelo Loffreda’s Argentina at Welford Road in February.

The son of former Tigers flanker, skipper and coach Ian "Dosser" Smith, Smith joined the Tigers Junior Academy at U-16 level and represented Oakham School in their 2003 Daily Mail Cup Final win at Twickenham. Smith entered his second year as a member of the first-team squad in 2007/08 and he was loaned out to National Division One team Nottingham. [3]

The 2008/09 season saw Smith make his breakthrough into regular first team action, appearing in all 16 of the games before Christmas 2008.

In January 2009 he received a call up to the England Saxons[4] and came off the bench to score a début try in the match against Portugal.[5]

He received the Outstanding Service Award at the end of the 2015/16 season.[6]

On 9 May 2019 Smith announced his retirement from rugby and he took up a position as the club's academy head coach.[7] He played his 228th and final game for the club on 18 May 2019 at Welford Road against Bath.[8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Aviva Premiership Rugby - Gloucester Rugby". web page. Premier Rugby. Archived from the original on 16 June 2012. Retrieved 3 September 2011.
  2. ^ "Matt Smith ESPN profile". ESPN. Retrieved 9 May 2019.
  3. ^ Leicester Tigers : Matt Smith
  4. ^ Mann, Andy (26 January 2009). "Smith deserves Saxons chance – coach". Leicester Tigers. Retrieved 4 February 2009.
  5. ^ Brereton, Chris (31 January 2009). "Ellis impresses on his return to lead Saxon rout of Portugal". The Independent. Retrieved 4 February 2009.
  6. ^ "Matt Smith (Centre)". Leicester Tigers. Retrieved 12 September 2017.
  7. ^ "Matt Smith: Leicester Tigers centre retiring to take on academy head coach role". BBC. 9 May 2019. Retrieved 9 May 2019.
  8. ^ "Bath complete comeback to give Leicester Tigers another gut-wrenching setback". The Telegraph. 18 May 2019. Retrieved 19 May 2019.