Mark Ring

Ex Rugby Player/Skills Attack Coach. 

  • Wales

  • Baa Baas

  • Cardiff

  • Pontypool

  • West Hartlepool

  • Penzance & Newlyn

  • Caerphilly RFC

  • Glamorgan University

  • Old Crescent RFC

  • St Peters

  • St Albans

  • Tetbury

  • Old Illtydians

Club career

A great entertainer, Ring was noted for his cheek, flair and individual skill. He first came to attention as outside half for the Cardiff RFC Youth team where he gained selection for Wales Youth, scoring a try on debut v England.
He made his senior debut as an 18-year-old during his Youth season against Cote Des Basques in Biarritz for whom Serge Blanco scored three tries. He played in and won three Welsh Cup Finals and played for Cardiff when they defeated the 1984 Australian Tourists who completed the Grand Slam of Tests but yet again, failed to defeat a Cardiff team who still remain unbeaten against every Australian Touring team who ever crossed these shores.
He became a great crowd favourite with his hometown club but also spent a few seasons at Pontypool where he formed a notable half back partnership with David Bishop in 1987–88. He returned to Pontypool in 1992. He was a Club Championship winner for both Cardiff and Pontypool. He played more than 250 games for Cardiff and scored 94 tries and 677 points

International career

Ring made his Senior Wales debut against England as a 20-year-old and went on to gain 32 International Caps between 1983 and 1991. The highlight of his international career came in 1988 when he was part of a Triple Crown winning Welsh side. The majority of his caps were won in the centre position but he played in his favoured outside half role throughout the 1991 World Cup.

He played in two World Cups (1987 and 1991) Wales finished third in 1987 but failed to qualify from their group in 1991, having been defeated by Western Samoa. Ring played two Test Matches for The Barbarians losing against the 1988 Australians and defeating the 1990 Argentinian Touring Team where he formed a Centre partnership with New Zealand Centre Craig Innes. Ring was selected for two World XV Touring Squads, one to celebrate the Western Province Centenary in 1983 and the other to celebrate the South African Rugby Board's Centenary in 1989. He captained Wales on two occasions when Wales toured Namibia in 1990,though not in any of the Tests. Ring was Wales' Rugby Writers Player of the Year in 1985.

Coaching career

Mark Ring ended his top flight club career in 1996 after the first Heineken Cup Final, when Cardiff were beaten by Stade Toulousain. He moved into coaching, first at West Hartlepool as Player/Director of Rugby and then  moved on to a similar role at Penzance and Newlyn Pirates. He later moved back to Cardiff where he was an attached coach under former playing colleague David Young. Whilst still employed as a Development Officer with Cardiff's Capital Rugby Scheme he moved to Caerphilly, where he worked under Terry Holmes and alongside Tony Faulkener. Following Holmes' departure Ring won plaudits as Head Coach of Caerphilly whom he took to the third tier European Final at the Madjedski Stadium, losing to Castres Olympique. He later moved to Ireland to coach a feeder team for Munster called Old Crescent in AIL Division 2. He then returned across the water and to coach Tetbury RFC in Gloucestershire Division Two as well as coaching the University of Glamorgan team in Treforest. He then spent four seasons at Welsh Premier Division side Cross Keys who went on to defeat Pontypridd in the Welsh Cup Final the week after being defeated by Munster 'A' in the final of the British & Irish Cup in Cork. He later came back to his home town Club as Attack coach at Cardiff and as an attached coach at the Blues under former playing colleague Phil Davies. He currently coaches Old Illtydians RFC in Division 3 East Central of WRU's Swalec League.

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