Will Greenwood is a former England rugby player and the second highest try scorer in English rugby history. He is widely regarded as one of England’s greatest ever rugby players, as well as one of the sport’s most engaging, intelligent and entertaining characters.
Will Greenwood started his working career on London’s City trading floor before debuting for Harlequins in 1994 and then progressing to Leicester in 1996.
He made his England debut in 1997 and went on to become an integral part of the England team, a position he cemented in the Six Nations and World Cup in 2003, finishing the World Cup tournament as joint top try scorer with five.
Throughout his 11 years playing professional rugby, Will was a dedicated professional combining a fantastic work ethic with a desire to continuously learn and improve his game. Despite injury setbacks and occasional moments of self-doubt and personal tragedy his focus, determination and perseverance led him to the top of the national and international game.
After 55 England caps and 31 tries he announced his retirement at the end of the 2005/6 season.
After retiring, Will established himself as a Sky sports presenter, ITV analyst, columnist for The Telegraph, as well as writing three books and giving talks on themes such leadership, attitude, trust/teamship and confidence.
Will was handed his full England international debut in 1997 but injury halted his first couple of years in international rugby. 2000/01 season saw him establish himself as an England regular under the tutelage of Clive Woodward and accolades swiftly followed.
He won three man-of-the-match performances in one Six Nations alone, in victories over Scotland, Wales and Italy in 2002. Selected for England’s World Cup winning squad in 2003, Greenwood finished the tournament joint top try scorer with five to his name.
In 2005, in the culmination of an outstanding career, he picked up his first Test caps for the British & Irish Lions in the 2005 tour of New Zealand. In total he toured 3 times with Lions, in 1997, 2001 and 2005.
After retiring in 2006, Will was quickly snapped up by Sky Sports to form part of their matchday rugby presentation team, working for them for 16 years. During that time Will drove the hugely popular ‘School of Hard Knocks’, a programme which gave at-risk youngsters the chance to train, grow and shine through sport.
Will is also a successful businessman in his own right. In November 2020, Will took up the position as Chief Customer Officer at data and software company Afiniti, an artificial intelligence company that helps organisations use data and AI to have better conversations with their customers.
Will has written a Saturday column piece for The Telegraph for the past 17 years.
In 2021, Greenwood and Ben Fennell, former Bartle Bogle Hegarty CEO, released a book called World Class: How to Lead, Learn and Grow like a Champion. Other books that Will has published include Bulgarian Bruises, Bloodgate and Other Stories: The changing world of rugby; and Will: The Autobiography of Will Greenwood.
In 2002, Will experienced the tragedy of his son dying 45 minutes after being born. He is now patron of Child Bereavement UK, a charity which supports parents who have lost a child and is also a Patron of Borne, a medical research charity looking into the causes of premature birth.
Borne is on a mission to end premature birth – everywhere and forever. Will has climbed mountains, crossed countries and made it to the North Pole in his support of Borne, with his trip to the North Pole raising £750,000 for Borne’s research.
Will is an articulate and enigmatic speaking. He brings with him knowledge and expertise on the following themes:
“Another blinding performance, superb. They loved you!! I’ve never experienced such positive feedback about a guest speaker before, from the entire audience, truly memorable.” Aviva
“Will was fantastic and in 20 years the first time a guest speaker has ever received a standing ovation!” Appco, Lisa Norman | Head of Talent
“Will spoke at our annual Business Conference and was inspirational. His anecdotes were funny and motivational as well as relevant to our business. Wills’ ability to take key elements of Rugby, for example Leadership, Responsibility, Teamwork and Trust and help us to draw the comparisons to the business world, provided a memorable and motivational end to our conference that will continue to be referred to by the participants in the coming months. His relaxed and fun style mixed with a clear intellect and strong drive to succeed made for a very thought-provoking and motivational experience. ” Bentley
“Will was fantastic, everyone loved his speech and the charity auction went down a treat.” HSBC
“We all thoroughly enjoyed your talk and the feedback we have received has been excellent. We are still getting letters of thanks and praise so thank you so much for making the event such a success. We will certainly recommend you to others and hope to be able to book you again in the future. “ Lisa Pearson, George Davies Solicitors LLP
“Surpassed all expectations. Great relevance to business with emphasis on team ethos and high performance delivered in an innovative enthusiastic and humorous style, which appealed to everyone.” Barry Smith, Chief Executive, Fortis (UK) Ltd
“It went brilliantly, I was so pleased… wouldn’t hesitate in recommending Will to anyone…” ABFA Awards