Kyle Sinckler
Kyle Sinckler 2014 (cropped).jpg
Sinckler playing for Harlequins in 2014
Birth nameKyle Sinckler
Date of birth (1993-03-30) 30 March 1993 (age 27)
Place of birthWandsworth, England
Height1.83 m (6 ft 0 in)[1]
Weight115 kg (18 st 2 lb; 254 lb)[1]
Rugby union career
Position(s) Tighthead prop
Current team Bristol Bears
Youth career
0000 Battersea Ironsides
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
2011–2020 Harlequins 137 (40)
2011–2012Richmond (loan) 13 (5)
2013Ealing (loan) 3 (5)
2020– Bristol Bears 5 (0)
Correct as of 26 September 2020
National team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
2009–2010 England U18 16 (10)
2011 England U19
2012–2013 England U20 13 (10)
2016– England 35 (5)
2017 British and Irish Lions 3 (0)
Correct as of 19 October 2019

Kyle Sinckler (born 30 March 1993) is an English professional rugby union player who plays as a tighthead prop for Premiership club Bristol Bears and the English national team. He has previously played for Harlequins, Richmond and Ealing Trailfinders.

A product of the Harlequins Academy, Sinckler made his brief debut in the 2011–12 season, before going out on loan to Richmond for the entire season, becoming part of the squad that won promotion to the National League 1. He returned to Harlequins for the 2012–13 season as a primary squad rotation player; a brief loan to Ealing followed in the following league campaign, before breaking into the first team squad.

Sinckler has represented England at under-16, under-18, under-19 and under-20 levels, and has been a crucial member of the senior team since 2016, in which he has won the Six Nations Championship, the Calcutta Cup and the Millennium Trophy.[2] Sinckler's performances for England led to him being include in Warren Gatland's squad for the British and Irish Lions' tour to New Zealand in 2017. In 2019, he was a member of the England squad that finished as runners-up to South Africa at the Rugby World Cup in Japan, though picked up injury during the final.

Early life

Sinckler was born in Wandsworth, London, and began playing rugby from the age of eight. Sinckler states that it was his mother, Donna, who instigated his rugby career. According to Sinckler, he was a keen footballer though his physical nature resulted in him dropping the sport. His mother took him to local rugby union side Battersea Ironsides in Earlsfield.[3][4]

Club career

Harlequins

Sinckler began his Harlequins career when Academy coach Collin Osborne saw him, aged 12, playing at one of his various positions, this time full back, against King's College School OB, Wimbledon, where his talent was immediately spotted.[5]

Sinckler graduated from the Harlequins Academy squad after playing his first game for the club in their 42–6 thrashing over Gloucester in round 2 of the 2011–12 Aviva Premiership although he only appeared for the last 5 minutes of the game.[6] Sinckler only went on to play one more game for Harlequins in that same season, coming off the bench against Sale Sharks during their 37–25 victory in the 2011–12 LV Cup. During this season, Kyle was sent to Richmond on loan, where he helped them to promotion to National League 1.[7]

Sinckler then spent the whole of the following season playing at Harlequins where he made 7 appearances, all of which were from the bench. He played in various competitions, and made his Heineken Cup debut against Zebre which Harlequins went on to win 53–5.[8] Sinckler highly contributed to their 2012–13 LV Cup winning campaign, playing in four out of the six games, including the semi-final against Bath.[9][10]

Sinckler was sent on loan to Ealing Trailfinders at the beginning of the 2013–14 season; though intended to be for the entire league campaign, he was recalled by Harlequins.[11] Sinckler made his way into the Harlequins match-day team, when Paul Doran-Jones sustained an injury early on in the season. He made his first appearance for the season during a 37–13 victory over Worcester Warriors.[12] However, Sinckler did have to wait until mid-February to gain his first start for the team, which occurred in a 25–20 defeat to Gloucester.[13] A week later, Sinckler went on to play his first full game for the club, which Harlequins narrowly defeated Worcester Warriors by 21–20.[14] Sinckler went on to start in their Premiership semi-final play-off tie against Saracens, which resulted in a 31–17 defeat.[15] In May 2016, Sinckler was a member of the side that lost to Montpellier in the final of the European Rugby Challenge Cup.[16]

Bristol Bears

On 27 January 2020, it was confirmed that Sinckler would join fellow Premiership side Bristol Bears, signing onto a two-year deal.[17] It was agreed that Sinckler would remain at Harlequins for the remainder of the 2019–20 season, officially joining Bristol during the summer.[17]

International career

Youth levels

Sinckler was named in the England under-20 Elite Player Squad ahead of the 2011–12 season.[18] In his first season, he played ten times, across both the Six Nations Championship and 2012 IRB Junior World Championships.[19] At the Junior World Championship in South Africa, Sinckler scored in pool stage victories against Italy[20] and Ireland.[21] He was reinstated into the squad for the 2012–13 season, playing in just three matches in the 2013 Junior Six Nations, due to his commitments with Harlequins.[22]

England senior team

His form for Harlequins across the 2012–13 and 2013–14 seasons landed Sinckler a place in the English national side for the uncapped annual fixture against the Barbarians.[23] He was named in the starting line-up for the "England XV", in a 39–29 defeat.[24] After his performance against the Barbarians, Sinckler was picked over Will Collier to go on tour with the rest of the England squad.[25]

Sinckler was called up to the senior England squad again by new head coach Eddie Jones, on 8 May 2016, for a three-day training squad.[26] He made his debut for the Senior team on 12 November 2016, coming on for Dan Cole during the remaining 10 minutes against South Africa.[27] Sinckler was a member of the side that retained their title during the 2017 Six Nations Championship,[28] missing out on a grand slam with defeat in the last game of the tournament away to Ireland.[28]

During the 2019 Six Nations Championship, Sinckler was referred to by Wales head coach Warren Gatland as an "emotional timebomb", because of some incidents that had occurred during his stint in the 2017 tour to New Zealand with the British and Irish Lions.[29] In the match against Wales that followed, Sinckler gave away several penalties that proved critical to the match result, and was taken off in the 57th minute.[30]

Despite his drop in form, Sinckler was later selected in England's squad for the 2019 Rugby World Cup.[31] He was named in the starting line-up in all but one match, and scored his maiden test try in their quarter-final victory over Australia.[32] The team's excellent form during their campaign saw them qualify for the final against South Africa; in the third minute, Sinckler made accidental contact with teammate Maro Itoje's elbow while attempting to tackle Makazole Mapimpi and was knocked out. After being helped on the field by the medical staff, he was helped off and ruled out for the rest of the match, in which they were defeated 32–12.[33][34]

International tries scored by Kyle Sinckler as of 19 October 2019[35]
Try Opposing team Location Venue Competition Date Result Score
1  Australia Ōita, Japan Ōita Bank Dome 2019 Rugby World Cup 19 October 2019 Won 40–16

British and Irish Lions

On 19 April 2017 Sinckler was included in the list of players selected for the British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand in June and July.[36]

Personal life

In July 2017, Sinckler was arrested in Central Auckland, during a night out with his teammates on the conclusion of the British and Irish Lions' tour to New Zealand.[37] According to reports, Sinckler was involved in a "minor incident" whilst celebrating the Lions' 15–15 draw against New Zealand.[37] He was placed under arrest though was not prosecuted; police officers escorted Sinckler back to his hotel shortly after the incident.[37] Sinckler openly apologised for his actions.[37] He has a dog called Brody.[38]

Honours

Club

Harlequins