Rory Best

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Rory Best
Rory Best 2015 RWC.jpg
Best playing for Ireland during the 2015 Rugby World Cup
Full name Rory Best
Date of birth (1982-08-15) 15 August 1982 (age 35)
Place of birth Craigavon, Northern Ireland
Height 1.8 m (5 ft 11 in)
Weight 110 kg (17 st 5 lb; 243 lb)
School Portadown College
University Newcastle University
Rugby union career
Position(s) Hooker
Amateur team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
2004– Ulster 230 (135)
Correct as of 23 January 2016
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
2013, 2017
Ireland Wolfhounds
British and Irish Lions
Correct as of 18 March 2017

Rory David Best OBE (born 15 August 1982) is an Irish rugby union player. He plays hooker for Ulster and is registered for Banbridge RFC.

Early life[edit]

Best appearing for Ulster in 2010 Magner's League match versus Ospreys

Best was raised in Poyntzpass, County Armagh. He was educated at Tandragee Junior High School, Portadown College. He then studied Agriculture at Newcastle University where he played with the Newcastle Falcons academy.


Best returned home to join Belfast Harlequins in 2002 where he captained the team and gained his first Ulster contract in 2004.[1] He made his debut for Ulster as a replacement at home to Munster in the 2005 Celtic League. He replaced his brother (now retired Ireland and Ulster prop Simon) as Ulster captain for the 2007/08 season and continues to hold the position. He is renowned for his abilities as a scrummager.[2] Best missed the entire 2009/10 season due to surgery on a chronic disc problem.[3] Best scored two tries in 2011/12 and 2010/11 for Ulster. He was part of the Ulster side that was defeated in The Heineken Cup final in 2012.[citation needed]

Rory Best has made 198 appearances for Ulster not 230 as stated in the sidebar


Best made his international debut for Ireland as a replacement against the All Blacks at Lansdowne Road in November 2005 and made his first start against the Springboks in 2006. He has been involved with the national team ever since, initially sharing the number 2 shirt with Jerry Flannery. He was a member of the Irish teams that won the 2007 Triple Crown and was in the Irish Squad for the 2007 Rugby World Cup[4] as well as the 2009 Six Nations Championship which completed the Grand Slam.[citation needed]

He captained the Ireland team that toured North America in 2009, while many of his Ireland teammates were on the British and Irish Lions team that began their tour of South Africa at the same time. He became the undisputed[citation needed] first-choice Hooker at the 2011 Rugby World Cup after an injury to Jerry Flannery. He was chosen to captain Ireland during the 2012 Six Nations Championship after Paul O'Connell was injured.[citation needed]

Best was added to the British and Irish Lions squad for the 2013 British and Irish Lions tour to Australia on 26 May[5] after English Hooker Dylan Hartley was removed from the squad after receiving a red card in the Aviva Premiership final for abuse of an official on 25 May 2013.[6]

In January 2016, Best was named as the new Ireland captain for the 2016 Six Nations Championship.[7] On November 26, 2016, Best became Ireland's 5th centurion, gaining his 100th cap in a test match vs Australia in the Aviva Stadium, Dublin.[citation needed]


Best was appointed Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2017 Birthday Honours for services to rugby.[8][9]



Personal life[edit]

Best was raised on the family farm near Poyntzpass, County Armagh, and was married in Richhill in the summer of 2009 to Jodie Bell, a schoolteacher. They have one child.


  1. ^ Matt Hughes. "Sport". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  2. ^ "Best is Ireland's Mister Versatile – Rugby, Sport". 12 March 2009. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  3. ^ "Best to miss entire season through injury". The Irish Times. 13 August 2009. 
  4. ^ "Rory Best ruled out for up to three weeks". 16 September 2007. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  5. ^ "Best added to Lions squad". 27 May 2013. Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  6. ^ "Hartley hit with 11-week ban". Retrieved 3 June 2013. 
  7. ^ "Six Nations: Ireland name Rory Best captain and announce 35-man squad". Guardian. 20 January 2016. Retrieved 12 February 2016. 
  8. ^ "No. 61962". The London Gazette (Supplement). 17 June 2017. p. B10. 
  9. ^ "Queen's Honours: Awards for Rory Best, Jonathan Rea and Steven Davis". BBC Sport (Northern Ireland). 16 June 2017. Retrieved 18 June 2017. 

External links[edit]