Ray Hopkins
Birth nameRaymond Hopkins
Date of birth (1946-07-08) 8 July 1946 (age 77)
Place of birthMaesteg, Wales
Height5 ft 8 in (1.73 m)
Weight12 st 11 lb (179 lb; 81 kg)
Rugby league career
Position(s) Back
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
1972-? Swinton RLFC ()
Rugby union career
Position(s) Scrum-half
Amateur team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
Maesteg RFC ()
Llanelli RFC ()
Barbarian F.C. ()
International career
Years Team Apps (Points)
1970 Wales 1 (3)
1971 British Isles 1 (0)

Ray "Chico" Hopkins (born 8 July 1946)[1] is a Welsh former international rugby player who was also a member of the British Lions.


Ray Hopkins was born in Maesteg, Wales, and he later worked as a National Coal Board fitter at their workshop in Maesteg.

Club career

Hopkins played youth rugby union for the Maesteg RFC academy. Later, he played for the senior Maesteg team,[2] Wales, British and Irish Lions and Llanelli RFC.

Hopkins played for the victorious Llanelli team that played and beat the New Zealand All Blacks at Stradey Park on 31 October 1972. The Scarlets side emerged 9-3 winners of what was a bruising, brutal encounter at a packed Stradey Park with 20,000 supporters. Others to play in the victory included ex Wales Coach Gareth Jenkins and Ray Gravell.

In 1972 Hopkins joined Swinton RLFC (rugby league), making his debut against Huyton on 3 December that year.[3]

International career

Although he played only 20 minutes for the full international Wales team, Hopkins earned lasting fame in Welsh rugby history due to a notable try against England in 1970.[4] It was unfortunate for him that Gareth Edwards was in possession of the Wales and British Lions scrum-half position at the time.

Hopkins's moment of fame came during the England v. Wales game at Twickenham in 1970.[5] The Wales team were behind on points with twenty minutes to go. The captain, Gareth Edwards, was injured and had to retire from the game. Hopkins came onto the field as a replacement. He soon scored a try, and, after a conversion by J.P.R. Williams, Wales won the game.

He toured with the 1971 Lions to New Zealand and played in ten games against provincial sides.[6] He was an injury replacement for Gareth Edwards in the Dunedin Test match, which the Lions won, 9-3.


  1. ^ Ray Hopkins player profile Scrum.com
  2. ^ The Rugby Clubs of Wales, David Parry-Jones (1989) pg81 ISBN 0-09-173850-4
  3. ^ Jenkins, John M.; et al. (1991). Who's Who of Welsh International Rugby Players. Wrexham: Bridge Books. p. 75. ISBN 1-872424-10-4.
  4. ^ Hugh Godwin (1 February 2008). "Enter the dragon: the history of England v Wales". The Independent. Retrieved 19 July 2010.
  5. ^ Fields of Praise, The Official History of the Welsh Rugby Union 1881-1981, David Smith, Gareth Williams (1980) pp467 ISBN 0-7083-0766-3
  6. ^ Chico Hopkins Lions profile lionsrugby.com