Gareth Rees (rugby union)

Gareth Rees
Full name Gareth Lloyd Rees
Date of birth (1967-06-30) June 30, 1967
Place of birth Duncan, British Columbia, Canada
Height 6 ft 0 in (1.83 m)
Weight 204 lb (93 kg)
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Fly-half / Fullback
Amateur clubs
Years Club / team
Castaway Wanderers RFC
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
Bedford Blues
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1986–1999 Canada 55 (487)

Gareth Lloyd Rees (born June 30, 1967 in Duncan, British Columbia) is a former Canadian international rugby union footballer who played at fly-half and full back positions.[1] Rees played for several British club sides, including Wasps and Harlequins. He won 55 caps for Canada, captaining them on 23 occasions and scoring 487 test points. In October 2011, Rees received arguably his greatest honour with induction to the IRB Hall of Fame.[2] He and fellow 2011 inductee Brian Lima of Samoa are the first members of the IRB Hall from nations outside of the traditional top tier of the sport.

Rugby career

Rees was born in Duncan, British Columbia, to Alan Rees who had emigrated to Canada from Wales, and was himself a former rugby player having represented Cross Keys, Maesteg and London Welsh.[3] Rees was educated at St. Michaels University School in Victoria and later at Harrow School in England. When studying at Harrow, he was selected to the Wasps starting XV in what was then the John Player Cup final.

He played club rugby with Castaways, Wasps, Harlequins, Mérignac, Newport, Oxford University, Bedford and the Barbarians.

Rees played in all of the first four Rugby World Cup tournaments, the 1987, 1991, 1995 and 1999. He retired after the 1999 finals becoming the only player to play at the first four Rugby World Cups.

In the 1995 World Cup Rees together with James Dalton and Rod Snow were sent off for fighting in a Canada vs South Africa match that came to be known as the Battle of Boet Erasmus.[4] All three players received a 30-day suspension. Rees did not regret coming to the aid of his team mates, and said after the incident, "We're a very tight team. The guys love each other."[4]

He was inducted in the British Columbia Rugby Hall of Fame.

In 2011 he was inducted in the World Rugby Hall of Fame as the first and only Canadian. In 2014 he was inducted in the Canada Sports Hall of Fame as the first and only rugby player.

Rees donated one of his rugby boots to be bronzed and used as a trophy to be competed for annually by St. Michaels and Oak Bay High School.


  1. Gareth Rees player profile ESPN
  2. "IRB Awards 2011 – latest" (Press release). International Rugby Board. 2011-10-24. Retrieved 2011-10-24.
  3. "Gareth Lloyd Rees". Retrieved 27 August 2011.
  4. 1 2 "Three are suspended after brawl". The Independent. 5 June 1995. Retrieved 27 August 2011.

External links

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