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NAME: Gary Leslie

POSITION: Tighthead Prop Forward
HEIGHT: 5 11
WEIGHT: 17 stone (now a bit heavier)
TEAMS: Dungannon, Ulster, Queens & Belfast High School
HONOURS: European Students Champions Cup, 7 times Ulster Senior Cup, AIB League Winner & European Cup Winner 1999

When Did Rugby Start For You? I first played in P7, started as a prop in lower 6th and I loved it straight away.

Who influenced your style: At school I was guided in the dark arts by Carrick RFC “Goochie” Willie McKeown and Willie McMann before Irish Schools trials and then while at Queens Robbie Moore and the Dungannon coaches Willie Anderson and David Hazelton.

Memorable Moment: A scrum in the Hieneken Cup Quarter Final against Toulouse. We won the scrum and scored a try which was a critically important score in that game, something I am very proud of.

Best Props You played Against: The loosehead for Australia against New South Wales when they toured here in 96, and the unforgettable Frank Tournains the Toulouse and French International Prop! My god those were good moments! I also competed against Craig Dowd the New Zealand International.


What is the role of prop: A prop secures 1st phase ball from the scrum and lineout and some say the tighthead is the cornerstone of the pack.

Whats It Like To Prop: The scrum is a one on one battle to gain dominance. The key for the tighthead is to set the height of the scrum and deliver the power. In the engagement the tighthead in the old days looked to hit in between the Loosehead and Hooker and bring the loosehead shoulder down, once this is acheived you can go to work on the Hooker, but that was the old days lol, now it is sheer power, straight as a dye and deliver it all through the top of the shoulders and back.

SHAVED OR UNSHAVED: UNSHAVED – I always played with a little 3 or 4 day stubble

BEERS, WINES OR SPIRITS: It depends on the occasion Front Rows contrary to popular opinion are extremely fashionable and practice a little of the social chameleon lol.

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