Danny Care set England on the way to completing their first Grand Slam in 13 years with the arrow-straight, 45-metre break from a ruck that brought the initial try in the 31-21 triumph over France in Paris in the final match of the 2016 RBS 6 Nations Championship. He had won his 50th Test cap against South Africa at Twickenham in November 2014. A jack-in-a-box behind the scrum with the ability to make sniping close-to-the-line runs, he made his debut nine years ago against New Zealand.
England’s second most capped scrum half behind Matt Dawson (77), Danny marked his 60th Test appearance in the 39-28 win over Australia in Brisbane in June last year with a darting run that ignited the move which produced his side’s third and final try by Jack Nowell. He also excelled with a timely cameo performance off the bench in the 19-16 victory over France in the opening match of the 2017 Six Nations Championship at Twickenham. He then celebrated his first start in almost a year after ten appearances off the bench with the second of England’s six tries against Italy.
Two weeks later, he marked his 70th appearance with two touchdowns off the bench in the runaway win over Scotland at Twickenham. Danny was appointed as one of three England vice-captains for the tour of Argentina and played an important part in the 38-34 victory in the first Test at San Juan. He added his 12th try at international level against the Pumas at Santa Fe the following week and his next touchdown against Australia in November in his 75th Test took him to second place in the list of try-scoring England scrum halves with 13, three fewer than Matt Dawson.
His typically quick-witted try in the final minute had crowned the 38-18 win over Scotland in the Calcutta Cup match at Twickenham in February 2013. After playing in 32 of England's 34 Tests up to the RWC 2011, Danny missed the tournament through a toe injury and he was also absent from the 2012 RBS 6 Nations Championship squad.
He marked his return to an England jersey with a try for the midweek team in the 54-26 win over the South African Barbarians South at Kimberley in June 2012 and then scored his fourth Test try and won the man of the match award against South Africa at Port Elizabeth when returning to Test level after a ten-month absence. His senior status developed from multiple national honours at age group levels, including the captaincy of the U20 side in all five of their 2007 Six Nations Championship games.
He also represented England U16, U18 and U19 before appearing for the England Sevens side that won a silver medal at the 2006 Commonwealth Games in Melbourne. His previous Sevens experience was with England U19 at the Commonwealth Youth Games in Australia two years earlier.
Danny was originally a contemporary of former England squad mate Jordan Crane at Leeds Carnegie after learning the game at Prince Henry's Grammar School in Otley. He appeared for the market town club before joining Carnegie in 2003, having first played for West Park Leeds minis and been a member of the Sheffield Wednesday Football Academy.
He became part of the Carnegie Colts team that won the National Cup in 2004 and went on to understudy Justin Marshall, the legendary All Blacks scrum half, at Headingley. His first team debut against VRAC in the European Challenge Cup was on a day of mixed emotions because after scoring 11 points he sustained a broken ankle.
A try in the pre-season friendly against Bourgoin in August 2006 marked his arrival at Harlequins where his pace and invention were quickly appreciated. He has since made 232 appearances for the club and scored 66 tries, one conversion and eight dropped goals amounting to 356 points. His 200th game was against Northampton Saints in April last year and a fortnight later he bagged a try hat-trick against London Irish. In August 2012, he signed an extended contract and was appointed as Harlequins captain for 2015/16 season as the successor to Joe Marler. He continued in that role last season when the club launched its 150th anniversary celebrations. His own testimonial began in October with fund raising for Try for Change Fund, Great Ormond Street Hospital Children’s Charity and Breast Cancer Haven in the presence of his England squad mates.
His Test breakthrough was during England’s summer tour of New Zealand in 2008 when he played off the bench for Richard Wigglesworth in Auckland and then scored a try from his own tapped penalty after starting the second Test in Christchurch. He began every RBS 6 Nations Championship match in 2010 and toured Australasia that June. Danny won his 40th cap against Italy at Twickenham in March 2013 before being rested for England’s summer tour of South America.
Pouncing for an opportunist try from a tapped penalty against Wales at Twickenham in March 2014 meant he had scored in all of the first four RBS 6 Nations Championship matches that year. He ran in one against Ireland the previous month after dropping his third goal in Tests against Scotland at Murrayfield, a week after his second against France at Stade de France. His first had been against Scotland at Twickenham in 2009.
74 points – 13T, 3DG
2008 NZ(1R,2), PI, A, SA, NZ 2009 I(R), F(R), S(R), Arg (1,2), A, Arg(R), NZ(R) 2010 W, It, I, S, F, A(1,2R), NZ(R), A(R), Sam(R), SA(R) 2011 W(R), It(R), F(R), S(R), I(R), W, W(R) 2012 SA (3), Fj, A, SA(R), NZ(R) 2013 S(R), F(R), It, W(R), Arg(R) 2014 F, S, I, W, It, NZ (2), NZ, SA 2015 F(R), F(R) World Cup - U 2016 S, It(R), I(R), W(R), F, W(R), A(1R,2R,3R), SA(R), Fj(R), Arg(R), A(R) 2017 F(R), W(R), It, S(R), I(R), Arg (1,2), Arg(R), A(R), Sam 2018 It(R), W
Last updated: 12 February 2018