Michael John Catt OBE is a former rugby union player who was born on September 17, 1971, in Port Elizabeth, South Africa. He represented England in international rugby and played as a utility back, covering positions such as fullback, fly-half, inside centre, and wing. Catt had an impressive career and earned 75 international caps for England. He played in two Rugby World Cup Finals, in 2003 when England won, and in 2007.
Catt began his club career with Bath in 1992, initially serving as an understudy to Stuart Barnes. He played for Bath for 12 years and was part of the team that won the Heineken Cup Final in 1998 against Brive. After the 2003-04 season, Bath decided not to renew his contract, and he moved to London Irish. Catt played for London Irish as both a player and a backs coach. He had a successful tenure with the club and was named Guinness Premiership Player of the Season in 2006. Catt retired from competitive club rugby on May 8, 2010.
In terms of his international career, Catt made his debut for England as a replacement for Rob Andrew in a match against Wales. He gained recognition after his performance in England's match against Canada, where he replaced the injured Paul Hull and made a significant impact. Catt was part of England's Grand Slam-winning side in 1995 and played in the 1995 Rugby World Cup. However, he is perhaps most remembered for being "posterized" by Jonah Lomu in the semifinal match against New Zealand, where Lomu famously ran over Catt on his way to scoring four tries.
Catt's selection for the 2003 Rugby World Cup squad was seen as a surprise by some. He played a crucial role in England's quarter-final match against Wales as a tactical substitution to improve kicking options, helping England secure a victory. Catt also started as an inside centre in the semi-final against France and played as a replacement in the final, where England became world champions.
After retiring from playing, Catt embarked on a coaching career. He joined London Irish as an attack coach in 2008 and later became part of the coaching staff for the England national team in 2012. Catt was involved in Italy's coaching setup in 2016 and was appointed as attack coach. In 2019, he joined the coaching team for the Ireland national rugby team under the leadership of Andy Farrell.
Catt's contributions to rugby were recognized with honors, including being appointed a Member of the Order of the British Empire (MBE) and later an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his services to rugby.
|British & Irish Lions
|1997 - 2001|
|1994 - 2002|
|2004 - 2012|
|1994 - 2015|
|2016 - 2019|
|2020 - 2023|