Best Players To Wear Rugby Gloves

Matt Dawson England

If there was ever time when rugby gloves ruled the sporting landscape, it was probably the 2003 Rugby World Cup in Australia. From Matt Dawson to Matt Giteau, George Smith to Stirling Mortlock, some of the best players in the world donned the gloves when they played. 

Gloves have seemed to come and go -- mostly go -- over the years, but there are still the few who wear them. Here is our list of the five best players to ever wear gloves on the rugby pitch:

Aaron Smith


Arguably the greatest halfback of all time, New Zealand's Aaron Smith will always be remembered for his general-like qualities and his rocket pass off the deck. What may be forgotten, however, is that the maestro dipped his hands into the glove-wearing waters on a few occasions. The gloves didn't seem to hinder his pass too much, but the little scrum-half ditched them after a brief phase.

Still the first choice #9 for the All Blacks, Smith has spent his entire career in New Zealand where he's made 87 caps for the All Blacks, 137 for the Highlanders, and 43 for Manawatu. 

Matt Giteau


Like Smith after him, Giteau sported gloves for a short stint in his early days with the Wallabies. Perhaps peer-pressured by the glove-wearing fashion trend of the 2003 World Cup, Giteau rocked those bad boys from his center position en route to the final. He may have forgotten all about them afterwards, but we haven't. He's one of the best to ever play the game, and for a while did so with some nice black gloves on.

Giteau notched 103 caps for the Wallabies in his career, and he was a key member of the Brumbies and the Western Force in Super Rugby before heading off to Toulon for six years, where the team became the most dominant in Europe. He has since spent the past three years in Japan. 

George Smith

 
Before he shaved off his long, flowing locks, George Smith was also a glove-touting flanker at the heart of Australia's run to the World Cup final in 2003. Smith's professional career spanned a remarkable 21 years, and included stops all across the globe. Smith has played for the Brumbies, Toulon, Lyon, Stade Francais, Wasps, the Reds, the Bristol Bears, and the Suntory Sungoliath in Japan. In addition to all his club stops around the world, Smith has appeared 111 times for the Wallabies.

Stirling Mortlock


Yet another member of the old Australia teams from the turn of the millennium, Mortlock was one of the most prolific point-scorers in the world during his time. An inside center that could score tries and kick goals, Mortlock could do it all. Even wear rugby gloves. Mortlock spent nearly his whole career with the Brumbies, before a quick stint with the Rebels before retiring. He made 80 caps for the Wallabies, scoring 489 points in his test career.

Andy Goode


Perhaps the one man who never put his gloves away, Englishman Andy Goode has become somewhat of a cult figure in rugby circles. Despite not necessarily looking the part, Goode was a great fly-half in his day, leading Leicester through a period of dominance in the first decade of the millennium and making stops for Saracens, Brive, Wasps, the Sharks, Worcester, and Newcastle along the way. He also appeared 17 times for England and proved that a.) fly-halves have no size limits and b.) that you're never too old to wear gloves. 

FloSports Partners With Rx Sports

flo rx.jpg

FloSports has partnered with Rx Sports, producer of world-class CBD products, perfect for your training recovery needs.

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Round 4: Super Rugby Aotearoa/AU Team of the Week

Codie Taylor, Crusaders

With the Australian Super Rugby teams entering the fold this week, the Super Rugby Team of the Week selection just got a whole lot tougher. There were plenty of great performances over the weekend, and a few names on the sheet that continue to show up week in and week out. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

MLR Nationality Breakdown By Position: New England Freejacks

New England Free Jacks

The other day I was thinking about fly-halves in the MLR -- since that is my position -- and I got to thinking how few American players there are playing fly-half in Major League Rugby. The only ones I could think of off the top of my head were Ben Cima (SEA), Scott Dean (SEA), Tadgh Leader (NE) and Zinzan Elan-Puttick (AUS) -- and it's worth noting that both Leader and Elan-Puttick grew up playing rugby in Ireland and South Africa respectively. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

10 Monday Notes: Hot Seats In NZ, Super Rugby Kicks Off In AUS

Reds, Harry Wilson

The gifts keep on coming, as Super Rugby AU's new season just got underway this past weekend with two scintillating matchups, while Super Rugby Aotearoa once again dazzled fans. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

MLR Nationality Breakdown By Position: Houston Sabercats

Houston Sabercats

The other day I was thinking about fly-halves in the MLR -- since that is my position -- and I got to thinking how few American players there are playing fly-half in Major League Rugby. The only ones I could think of off the top of my head were Ben Cima (SEA), Scott Dean (SEA), Tadgh Leader (NE) and Zinzan Elan-Puttick (AUS) -- and it's worth noting that both Leader and Elan-Puttick grew up playing rugby in Ireland and South Africa respectively. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

More Rugby! Super Rugby Australia Kicks Off With Reds vs Waratahs

Waratahs

Much to the delight of many rugby fans all around the world, Super Rugby began a New Zealand-only competition three weeks ago, giving spectators something great to feast their eyes on after a long rugby layoff since the start of the pandemic. Well, starting this weekend the rugby universe will be treated to another great competition, as Super Rugby now begins its Australian-only league. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

TWO UNBEATENS REMAIN: Super Rugby Aotearoa Round 4 Preview

Richie Mo'unga, Crusaders

Through three rounds of Super Rugby Aotearoa, it's the Blues and the Crusaders who still remain unbeaten, while the Chiefs and the Hurricanes are still in search of a first victory on the season. The Highlanders, meanwhile, sit at 1-1 after two heart-stopping fixtures against the Chiefs and the Blues. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Date Set For New Zealand's North vs South Island Battle

Ardie Savea, All Blacks, New Zealand.jpg

For the first time since the mid 1980's, New Zealand is set to reintroduce the famous North vs South Island match on August 29th, pitting players from each of the two parts of New Zealand against one another to settle where the best rugby players in the country truly come from. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

MLR Nationality Breakdown By Position: Colorado Raptors

Colorado Raptors

The other day I was thinking about fly-halves in the MLR -- since that is my position -- and I got to thinking how few American players there are playing fly-half in Major League Rugby. The only ones I could think of off the top of my head were Ben Cima (SEA), Scott Dean (SEA), Tadgh Leader (NE) and Zinzan Elan-Puttick (AUS) -- and it's worth noting that both Leader and Elan-Puttick grew up playing rugby in Ireland and South Africa respectively. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In

Could New Zealand Be Hosting The Entire 2020 Rugby Championship?

New Zealand v South Africa - Rugby World Cup 2019_ Pool B Warren Little Getty Images For World Rugby.jpeg

With much of the world shut down still thanks to the Covid-19 pandemic, rumors are swirling that New Zealand could be home to the entire 2020 Rugby Championship. The past three weeks have seen the beginning of the Super Rugby Aotearoa, a competition involving just the four New Zealand Super Rugby franchises. 

Create a free account to unlock this article!

Get Started

Already a subscriber?  Log In