Pat Lam
Birth namePatrick Richard Lam
Date of birth (1968-09-29) 29 September 1968 (age 55)
Place of birthAuckland, New Zealand
Height1.88 m (6 ft 2 in)
Weight95 kg (15.0 st; 209 lb)
SchoolSt Peter's College
Notable relative(s)Dylan Mika (cousin) Ben Lam (nephew) Jack Lam (cousin)
Rugby union career
Position(s) Number 8, Director of Rugby
Current team Bristol Bears
Amateur team(s)
Years Team Apps (Points)
1990–1996 Marist Brothers Old Boys ()
Senior career
Years Team Apps (Points)
Newcastle Falcons
Northampton Saints
Newcastle Falcons


Provincial / State sides
Years Team Apps (Points)
North Harbour
Super Rugby
Years Team Apps (Points)
1996 Crusaders 3 (0)
International career
Years Team Apps (Points)
New Zealand Schools
New Zealand Colts[1]
New Zealand


National sevens team(s)
Years Team Comps
1989 New Zealand
Coaching career
Years Team
Scotland (Assistant)
Pacific Islanders
Bristol Bears
Correct as of 2 March 2018

Patrick Richard Lam (born 29 September 1968) is a rugby union coach and former player. He is currently Director of Rugby at Bristol Bears in England's Premiership Rugby.

Born in New Zealand, he represented New Zealand in schools and under-21 rugby. He played for Auckland, North Harbour, Crusaders, Newcastle Falcons and Northampton Saints. He also won 25 caps for Samoa, including at the 1991, 1995 and 1999 World Cups. His usual position was number 8.

Since retiring as a player he has coached teams including Auckland and Connacht.

Playing career

Lam was born in Auckland and attended St Peter's College, Grafton, and captained the New Zealand Secondary Schools rugby team. He played at loose forward for Auckland, North Harbour and Crusaders, before moving to England where he first played for Newcastle Falcons. In his first season at Newcastle he made 22 appearances as they won the 1997-98 Premiership.[2] However, after that triumph he moved on to Northampton Saints, with whom he won the 1999–2000 Heineken Cup.[3] Lam moved back to Newcastle Falcons for the 2001–02 season, playing with the club for a year before retiring.[4]

Lam played one game for the All Blacks in 1992 (becoming All Black no. 928), a non-test game against Sydney. He had played for Samoa first in 1991 and went on to captain them and represented them in three World Cups, retiring from international rugby after the 1999 tournament. Samoa reached the 1991 and 1995 quarter-finals against expectations.[5]

Lam has also played for the Barbarians. He played in 2002 against England as a replacement, scoring a try. In his second game for the side, Lam captained the team to a victory over Wales, scoring another try in his final game before retirement.[6]

Coaching career


Lam's first coaching position was as an assistant coach to Scotland at the 2003 Rugby World Cup.[7]

Auckland Blues

He was head coach of Auckland from 2004 until 2008. During his Auckland tenure he also coached the Pacific Islanders in 2006. He was head coach of Super Rugby team the Blues from 2009 to 2012.[8]

Manu Samoa

He worked with Samoa on the team's 2012 tour. Samoa's victories saw it reach eighth in the IRB rankings, and a secure second tier position for the 2015 Rugby World Cup.[9]

Connacht Rugby

Lam was appointed as head coach of the Pro12 side, Connacht Rugby in Ireland, ahead of the 2013-14 season.[5][10] On 28 May 2016, Connacht won their first ever major trophy, the 2015–16 Pro12 after a 20–10 win against Leinster in the final.[11]

Bristol Bears

Lam left Connacht in the summer of 2017 to take up the head coaching role with Bristol Bears. He was later appointed Director of Rugby. He won the 2019-20 European Rugby Challenge Cup with Bristol Bears after a 32-19 win against Toulon[12][13][14] In September 2021, Lam signed a five-year contract extension which will see him remain at Bristol until the summer of 2028.[15]





  1. ^ Patrick Richard Lam at New Zealand Rugby History
  2. ^ "Allied Dunbar Premiership, 1997/98 / Newcastle Falcons / Player records". Retrieved 7 September 2014.
  3. ^ "Pat Lam hopes to return to Northampton as a coach". BBC News. 17 May 2011. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  4. ^ "BBC SPORT | Rugby Union | English | Newcastle Falcons". BBC News. 25 August 2002. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  5. ^ a b "Greatest Rugby World Cup XV: number 8 profiles - Pat Lam". Telegraph. 17 August 2011. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  6. ^ "Barbarians bounce back". BBC News. 29 May 2002. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  7. ^ "BBC SPORT | Rugby Union | Rugby World Cup | Team Pages | Scotland | Scots are ready insists Lam". BBC News. 9 October 2003. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  8. ^ "RaboDirect PRO12: Connacht confirm Lam appointment | Live Rugby News". ESPN Scrum. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  9. ^ Andy Howell (18 November 2012). "Samoan great Pat Lam celebrates another special win over Wales". Wales Online. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  10. ^ "Pat Lam appointed to Head Coach | Connacht Rugby Website". 12 January 2013. Archived from the original on 22 September 2013. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  11. ^ "2016 Pro12 Final: as it happened". The 42. 28 May 2016. Retrieved 31 May 2016.
  12. ^ "Pat Lam to leave Connacht and take up coaching role with Bristol". Irish Independent. 5 December 2016. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  13. ^ "Pat Lam committed to Bristol regardless of Premiership status". Irish Examiner. 5 December 2016. Retrieved 5 December 2016.
  14. ^ "European Challenge Cup final: Bristol Bears 32-19 Toulon".
  15. ^ "Lam agrees new long-term Bristol deal". BBC Sport. Retrieved 17 September 2021.
  16. ^ "BBC Sport - Harlequins' Nick Evans wins RPA players' player of year award". 23 May 2012. Retrieved 21 September 2013.
  17. ^ "Honours for Connacht Rugby Coach at NUI Galway". 12 October 2016. Archived from the original on 21 November 2017.