Graham Rowntree


Former English Rugby Union player and Leicester Tigers legend, Graham Rowntree played at Loosehead Prop for both teams and went on to have an illustrious career enjoying success at both domestic and international levels. Graham’s vast experiences as an elite athlete and as part of a coaching team make him one of the most sought after rugby speakers on the after dinner circuit.

Depsite having to compete for international position with the world’s most capped player – Jason Leonard, Graham holds 54 caps for his nation, spanning multiple World Cups, Grand Slams and international tours.

Graham joined the Leicester Tigers in 1988, spending his time in the harness of the ABC Club with Richard Cockerill and Darren Garforth. Making his first England debut in March 1995 as a replacement for Leonard, Graham secured a place in the 1995 World Cup squad to South Africa.

Graham did not receive another cap for his nation for another two years, until a series of wonderful performances brought him back into the international spotlight. Rowntree was selected for tours of Canada and the US in 2001 and participated in the squad’s Autumn Internationals, a particular highlight being named man of the match for England’s 20-15 victory over Australia.

Despite playing an important role in international fixtures in the run up to the 2003 World Cup, Graham was not selected in the team to take the journey over to Australia. Sir Clive Woodward admitted that leaving Rowntree behind was one of the hardest decisions he had to make in his preparations. Despite this knockback, Rowntree returned for his national side in the 2004 Six Nations with strong performances. Graham’s ability to regain form and prove his worth in a highly competitive environment makes him one of the most compelling sports speakers.

Graham made a final appearance for England against Australia in 2006, before announcing his retirement. He became a coaching assistant at his home side, Leicester Tigers, before being drafted into the national coaching squad to become an elemental part of the Specialist coaching staff.

Having spent from 2007 to 2015 as England Rugby’s Forwards Coach, in his after dinner speeches Graham talks of his experiences within the backroom team of an international set up as well as the differences between being a coach and a player at the world’s biggest tournaments, including the World Cup and Six Nations.

Graham has recently participated in the 2017 British and Irish Lions tour with the team getting a win a loss and a draw.

Graham’s career has led him to understand the mindset, drive and determination needed to succeed at an elite international level of sporting competition. Graham’s invaluable knowledge bodes well for him a rugby speaker, engaging with audiences and providing the advice needed to achieve their own levels of peak performance.

To book Graham Rowntree as the rugby speaker for your corporate event, function or conference, simply contact the Champions Speakers agency by emailing or by calling a booking agent directly on 0207 1010 553.

When at corporate events, Graham is known to cover the following topics:

  • Rugby Speaker
  • Overcoming Adversity
  • Maximising Success
  • Leadership
  • Teamwork

“Graham was nothing short of inspiring. His ability to unite our team and channel everyone’s ethos in the same direction was invaluable. I would highly recommend. I will definitely be working with Graham again.” – Maurice Addison, Chairman, M2K Service

“Graham provided a very informative keynote speech into the world of professional rugby. He was extremely humorous without being rude or swearing.” – Dominic Gomersall, Managing Director, Lumbers 

“In 2014 Graham performed a keynote speech to our staff. He was incredible motivating and managed to transfer the skills and disciplines he had learned from his 20 years in rugby to the skills needed in the business world. Our team are still talking about Graham’s speech and using the advice he gave at the conference.” – Michelle, The Crowd Went Wild 

“Graham was our after dinner speaker. He had the whole audience in the palm of his hands and you could have heard a pin drop. His storied were funny and as a rugby fan, really interesting to hear about the game behind the scenes.” – Chris Crouch, Managing Director CCL

“The evening was excellent one of the best speakers we have had for a long time.” Simon Mullin, BGL Group