Colin Deans

Colin Deans was born on the 3rd of May 1955. He played for Hawick RFC and Scotland. His position was hooker. His Scottish debut was at the age of 22 playing against France in 1978 when Scotland lost 16-19. He played for the national team between 1978 and 1987. The highest point of his career was playing in Scotland’s 1984 Grand Slam. He was taught to play rugby by the famous Bill McLaren.

He was a British Lions Test player, and World Cup skipper. The Lions selectors made the surprisingly common mistake of picking someone who is not necessarily the first choice in his position. Deans was widely regarded as the best hooker on the 1983 tour of New Zealand but had to give way to skipper Ciaran Fizgerald for the Test berth.

Colin’s misfortune was further added to when the proposed 1986 tour of South Africa, for which he had again been selected was called off for political reasons.

He had such a turn of pace that he effectively acted as a fourth back row forward in open play. An extremely accurate thrower at the line out, he was an accomplished technical player in an era where the hooker’s art was under threat from rule changes and the onset of the eight man shove.

However like other great players he was both particularly adept in his specialist role while also possessing the fitness and speed necessary to play modern fifteen man rugby exemplified by his superb performance in Scotland’s famous win over Wales in Cardiff in 1982.

After retiring he was a forward coach with the Northampton Saints when they won the European Cup in 2000.

by Charles Wilson