Jason Robinson OBE
To represent your country in one sporting discipline calls for immense dedication, personal sacrifice and talent – few have what it takes. To achieve that goal, then switch sporting codes and reach the top again while still only in your mid-20s is exceptional.
But for Jason Robinson, being the first player ever to represent England at rugby league and rugby union is only part of the story. He also became the first rugby league player ever to captain England at rugby union and the only English player ever to score a try in a World Cup Final!
Robinson's best-selling autobiography, Finding My Feet, has been widely acclaimed for its candid portrayal of his teenage years and subsequent adoption of the Christian faith, while he continues to help inspire thousands of youngsters in his role as ambassador for Tesco Sport for Schools & Clubs.
Joining rugby league club Wigan in 1991, Robinson made his first team debut the following season and his explosive pace and jinxing swerves soon made him one of the most feared wingers in the game.
Nicknamed Billy Whizz, Robinson scored 184 tries during his career at Wigan, winning many individual and team honours, including the prestigious World Club Championship in 1994.
He also won four successive rugby league championships, two Challenge Cups, 12 Great Britain and seven England caps.
Robinson played his last game for Wigan in 2000 and became the most high profile player to switch from league to union when he joined Sale Sharks.
Despite his devastating pace, many dismissed his chances of recreating his rugby league dominance. That was without factoring in Robinson's resilience and charisma. He stepped up his game, going on to captain his club and write himself into the history books.
Remarkably, the speedy full-back was capped for England barely three months after he switched to rugby union and he went on to make the position his own with his powerful, elusive running style.
His crowning sporting memory remains as an international when he scored England's only try in the 20-17 win over Australia in the 2003 World Cup final.
Having retired from international rugby in 2005 Robinson brought down the curtain on his club career in 2006 with a fairytale last-minute try that gave Sale their first-ever Premiership title.
In January 2007 Jason came out of international retirement to rejoin the England squad for the RBS 6 Nations Championship. He was England Captain on four occasions after his comeback and ended his extraordinary career at the 2007 Rugby World Cup Final, where he was England Player of the Tournament and was vital to England reaching the final.
Jason is a brand ambassador for the clothing company ‘Proskins’, with whom his own range of sportswear named ‘JR’ was also created. Globally, he is an ambassador with HSBC and is involved in a number of their projects.
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Date of birth: 30 July 1974
Place of birth: Leeds
Height: 1.72m (5'8")
Weight: 85kg (13st 2lb)
Professional and personal honours
2008: Awarded OBE
2007: England Captain; World Cup Finalist
2006: Captained Sale Sharks to the Guinness Premiership
2004: Awarded MBE, England Captain
2003: Rugby World Cup winner; five tests as a British Lion; Six Nations Grand Slam winner; Rugby Union Premiership winner
Representative honours: England (rugby union), Great Britain (rugby league)