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Michaela Staniford


Key Facts

Height1.74m (5'9")
Weight72kg (11st 4lb)


You wonder how Michaela Staniford has time to breathe let alone be Operations Manager at Schools of Sport, Oxford. If there's a game of rugby that involves England it's pretty much guaranteed Michaela will be involved. Not only has she got 57 caps in the XVs version of the game, she's currently the most capped sevens player in the England Squad with 12 tournaments to her name and if there isn't an international fixture on she'll be donning the Wasps kit and running out for them. And she's rather good, too. She was named IRB Player of the Year in 2012, is the current leading try scorer in the England Sevens squad with 55 tries, she has skippered the Sevens team and holds the record as the youngest player to play for England when she made her debut at 17 back in 2005.

Her success, while a lot is down to natural ability, is not through lack of preparation. “I am very organised and always pack my food the night before. I like to know what I'm doing the next day and so I set a plan of action so I can make time for all my commitments.” And you wouldn't be surprised to find a peanut butter and banana wrap in that lunch box – a personal favourite.

But it's not all about rugby. Having completed a Sports Science degree, she got her Qualified Teaching Status and picked up a partial Masters in Education. You get the impression Michaela is not one to shy away from a challenge. She'd rather be doing something than sitting on the sofa watching Friends. And, surely, that can only be a good thing. In fact, she's even taken up Bikram Yoga – that’s yoga in a sauna as if yoga in normal surroundings wasn't tough enough for most of us.  

Michaela holds Sue Day, a former England Woman's player, as her inspiration. “A living legend,” she calls her in her own words.

Last updated:  February 4, 2014

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