An MBE for Services to Rugby and becoming the 2016 World Rugby Women’s Player of the Year have duly rewarded Sarah for her skill, dedication, determination and persistence in recovering from long-term injuries to reach 90 caps during her 11 years at top level. She celebrated the landmark by leading England to the Grand Slam with a 34-7 win over Ireland in this year’s Six Nations Championship. Sarah said: “We have worked for five long years to get it. We told ourselves to enjoy the occasion and soak it all up.”
Only three players - Rochelle Clark (122), Tamara Taylor (102) and Amy Garnett (100) - have appeared more times than Sarah for England. She led the side throughout the 2016 Six Nations and all three matches in the Rugby Super Series at Salt Lake City that July.
She also captained Red Roses in the four autumn games that produced three wins, including the 39-6 triumph over Canada in the final match at Twickenham Stadium in late November. Her try at Cardiff this February took England into a 38-0 lead over Wales at half time that turned into a 63-0 victory. The following month, her England side became the first team since 2002 to run in eight tries in the first half of a Women’s Six Nations match along the way to scoring 64 points without reply from Scotland.
A celebrated England captain, she not only inspired the team to a 32-0 win over Scotland in February last year but also scored her 18th Test try. She had played rugby league as a nine-year-old at Goathland Primary School, attended Longbenton Community College and studied Sports Science and Mathematics at Loughborough University.
Sarah, who was born in North Shields, works as RFU University Rugby Development Officer for the South West and is based at the University of Bath. As a player, she also won the British Universities Championship and captained Lichfield from 2005-09. People who gave her a good grounding in the game were rugby league coaches Mick Hogan and Charlie Wainwright, together with Graeme Cooper and Graham Smith. She is a fan of The Great British Bake Off and Downton Abbey on television and supports Newcastle United.
95 points – 19T
2007 S(R), It(R), I(R), F(R), USA 2008 W, F, S, I, Sw, I, W, USA, C 2009 F(R), S(R), F, C 2010 RWC - I(R), Kaz, USA, A, NZ 2011 W, It, F, S, I, USA, SA(R), C, C, F, NZ(1,2) 2012 S, It, W(R), F, I, Sp, It, F, F, NZ (1,2,3) 2013 S, I, F, It, W, NZ(1,2,3) C, SA(R), USA, C 2014 F, S, I, W, It, RWC Sam, Sp, C, I, C 2015 USA, NZ, C(R), F, I 2016 S, It, I, W, F, C, F, USA, F, I, NZ, C 2017 F, W, It, S, I, A(R), C
Last updated: 13 June 2017