Ian McGeechan

Sir Ian McGeechan
Date of birth (1946-10-30) 30 October 1946
Place of birth Headingley, Leeds, Yorkshire, England
University Carnegie Physical Training College
Occupation(s) Director of rugby
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Fly-half, Outside centre
Professional / senior clubs
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1964–1979 Headingley
correct as of 19 November 2007.
National team(s)
Years Club / team Caps (points)
1974 & 1977
British and Irish Lions
correct as of 19 November 2007.
Coaching career
Years Club / team
1989, 1993 & 1997
London Wasps (director of rugby)
British and Irish Lions
British and Irish Lions (midweek side)
British and Irish Lions
correct as of 19 November 2007.

Sir Ian Robert McGeechan OBE (born 30 October 1946) is a Scottish former rugby union player and coach. His nickname is "Geech".

Early life

McGeechan was born in Leeds to a Glaswegian father who was in the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. He attended West Park County Secondary School and trained to be a PE teacher at Carnegie Physical Training College (now part of Leeds Metropolitan University). Although his family mostly played football, he took to rugby while in school.[1]

Playing career

McGeechan played for Headingley and made his debut for Scotland in 1972. He won thirty-two caps, playing at fly-half and centre. He captained Scotland on nine occasions. He toured with the British and Irish Lions in both 1974 and 1977. During his playing career, he was also a PE teacher for over two decades.


In 1986 McGeechan became the assistant Scotland coach to Derrick Grant and in 1988 he was promoted to coach. In 1990 his team won a Grand Slam victory in the Five Nations Championship. His forwards coach and partner was Jim Telfer.

McGeechan was the British and Irish Lions Head Coach in 1989, 1993, 1997 and 2009.[2] In 2005, he coached the midweek side on the British and Irish Lions tour to New Zealand on the invitation of Sir Clive Woodward.[2]

In 1994 McGeechan was appointed as Director of Rugby at Northampton and in 1999 replaced Jim Telfer as Scottish Director of Rugby.

McGeechan was appointed Director of Rugby at London Wasps in 2005[3] after an unsuccessful and unhappy period as the Scottish Director of Rugby. In his first season of 2005/06 he led Wasps to the Powergen Anglo Welsh Cup title, beating Llanelli Scarlets in the final at Twickenham. In his second season, London Wasps claimed the Heineken Cup and in his third season, London Wasps won the Premiership

In February 2010, McGeechan joined the coaching staff at Gloucester as an advisor to Head Coach Bryan Redpath and his coaching team.[4][5] but moved to local rivals Bath Rugby to take up the post of performance director in June 2010.[6]

In 2011 McGeechan took over as the director of rugby at Bath following Steve Meehan's departure.[7]

In July 2012, McGeechan was appointed the executive chairman of Leeds Carnegie.[8]


McGeechan taught sport and geography at Fir Tree Middle School and Moor Grange County Secondary School in Leeds. He was also Vice Head Boy, assisting his best friend, Head Boy David Boland in the 1960s. During the 1970s and 1980s he was a teacher at Fir Tree Middle School, Leeds, again specialising in geography and sport.


McGeechan was knighted in the 2010 New Years Honours List for his services to rugby.[9] and also received an OBE in 1990


In August 2014, McGeechan was one of 200 public figures who were signatories to a letter to The Guardian opposing Scottish independence in the run-up to September's referendum on that issue.[10]


  1. Connor, Jeff (2011). Giants of Scottish Rugby. Random House. ISBN 9781780572888.
  2. 1 2 "McGeechan given Lions coach role". BBC News. 14 May 2008. Retrieved 18 June 2013.
  3. "McGeechan accepts Wasps position". BBC Sport. BBC News. 15 April 2005. Retrieved 7 January 2010.
  4. Geech to advise Gloucester Sky Sports, 11 February 2010
  5. Sir Ian McGeechan to work with Gloucester Rugby Gloucester Rugby Club, 11 February 2010
  6. "Sir Ian McGeechan joins Bath as performance director". BBC Sport. 30 June 2010. Retrieved 30 June 2010.
  7. Wildman, Rob (29 March 2011). "Ian McGeechan". Daily Mail. London. Retrieved 9 June 2012.
  8. "Leeds Carnegie appoint Sir Ian McGeechan as chairman". Retrieved 23 July 2012.
  9. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 59282. p. 1. 31 December 2009. Retrieved 31 December 2009.
  10. "Celebrities' open letter to Scotland – full text and list of signatories | Politics". theguardian.com. 7 August 2014. Retrieved 26 August 2014.


External links

Preceded by
Derrick Grant
Jim Telfer
Scotland national rugby union team coach
Succeeded by
Jim Telfer
Matt Williams
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