|Weight||95kg (14st 13lb)|
Pace and finishing power are the prime attributes of Marland Yarde, who cannot stop scoring tries. His latest were in the second and third Test matches against New Zealand at Dunedin and Hamilton in June this year. He had run in two when winning his first full Test cap against Argentina in Buenos Aires in the summer of 2013, almost three years after being a debut try scorer for London Irish on his first senior start in a preseason friendly against Edinburgh at Murrayfield in August 2010. He also bagged nine for England U20 overall.
He began with one against both Ireland and Scotland in the 2011 U20 Six Nations Championship. A hat-trick followed against Scotland in the 2012 match at Firhill, Glasgow, followed by a touchdown against Wales. Marland then took his total in that tournament to five with one in the final game against Ireland at Adams Park. The opening match against Italy in the 2012 IRB Junior World Championship against Italy brought him two more touchdowns.
Marland, who was born in Castries, St Lucia, also ran in a try on his competitive debut for the Exiles against Sale Sharks in the LV= Cup in November 2010 and his dual registration with London Welsh swiftly yielded two more tries for them in his initial two Championship matches. The first of his 40 Premiership appearances that produced 13 tries for Irish was for the full 80 minutes against Harlequins at Twickenham in September 2011. His first hat-trick of tries in the competition was in his penultimate game for the club against Gloucester at Kingsholm in May this year. He is joining Harlequins next season.
He said: “I love scoring tries and celebrate each one as though it could be my last. I had a memorable week four years ago with three on a Wednesday in the Daily Mail Cup final and four against Scotland for England U18 two days later.”
Whitgift beat RGS Newcastle 34-10 in that final at Twickenham and in the last eight rounds, he plundered 21 tries, including five in the 57-8 quarter-final win over Bishop’s Stortford HS, four against Reigate GS when Whitgift triumphed 61-15 and three in the 54-0 success over Eastbourne College.
He is a former pupil at Gunnersbury Boys Catholic School and Whitgift and graduated to the London Irish Academy after playing mini-youth rugby at Sunbury-on-Thames with London Irish Amateurs and in December 2009 helped England U18 to beat Australia 30-28 at Sale.
His next game against France at Newbury produced two tries in a seven-minute spell after half-time, the second of which was ten minutes from the end as England romped to a 33-16 win. He also started against Wales at Swansea in late March 2010 and plundered six in his five England U18 matches overall.
Marland, who missed the U18 tour for a four-team tournament in South Africa in the summer of 2010 because of a shoulder injury, had long been on England’s radar, playing for the U16A team in the 2008 Millfield International Festival. He appeared in the side that lost 33-25 to France at Tor RFC near Glastonbury, when figuring alongside former U18 squad mates Ben Ransom, Sam Northcote-Green, Will Skuse, Koree Britton and Ryan Mills.
He impressed subsequently for London & South East in the 2009 U18 Divisional Festival in the Midlands, picking up tries along the way to his England appearances at that level. Marland added: “London Irish Academy coaches Neal Hatley and Justin Bishop have been a great help to me as has Mike Catt, especially in the kicking department.”
He had a brief spell with Queen’s Park Rangers FC, captained Middlesex U16 at football and on the rugby front most admires William Ryder and Joe Rokocoko – both players with pace, panache and ambition.
20 points – 4T
2013 Arg (2), A 2014 NZ(1,2,3)
Last updated: June 24, 2014