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The Grand Slam heroes

John Griffiths February 3, 2014
Olivier Magne and Fabien Pelous love a Grand Slam © Getty Images
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Which player(s) have featured in the most Grand Slams? A Lees, England

The record is four held by several distinguished players.

The first to feature in four Grand Slams was a Welshman who played for England. W J A "Dave" Davies was England's fly-half in the 1913 and 1914 back-to-back Grand Slams and returned after the Great War to lead them to two more Grand Slams, in 1921 and 1923.

Born in Pembroke Dock, Davies was asked after being appointed captain in January 1921 by the national daily newspaper of Wales, the Western Mail , why he played for England.

"Until I left Wales I knew nothing about Rugby," he replied. "All my rugby was learnt in England."

Towards the end of Davies's 1921 campaign, Ronald Cove-Smith entered the England pack and played against Scotland and France. He featured in that Grand Slam, the back-to-back successes of 1923 and 1924 and led the side in 1928 when they added a Test victory over the touring side from Australia to their Grand Slam season.

Jason Leonard, whose long England career bridged the amateur and professional eras, featured in the 1991, 1992, 1995 and 2003 Grand Slams.

Two Frenchmen achieved four Grand Slams. Fabien Pelous and Olivier Magne played in the successful sides of 1997, 1998, 2002 and 2004, spanning the end of the Five Nations and the beginning of the Six Nations.

John Griffiths is a widely respected rugby historian and is the author of several sports books, a regular contributor to the Daily Telegraph and co-author of the IRB International Rugby Yearbook. He has provided insight for Scrum.com since 1999.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd

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John Griffiths is a widely respected rugby historian and is the author of several sports books, a regular contributor to the Daily Telegraph and co-author of the IRB International Rugby Yearbook. He has provided insight for Scrum.com since 1999.
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