David Duckham
David Duckham Image Credit: Twitter

London: Former England and British and Irish Lions rugby international David Duckham has died at the age of 76, his former club Coventry announced on Tuesday.

With a shock of blonde hair, a dazzling sidestep and electric pace, the Coventry-born Duckham stood out in a largely dour era of English rugby.

He scored 10 tries in 36 caps for his country between 1969 and 1976, retiring as then England's second all-time top try-scorer.

However, he is arguably even more fondly remembered for his role in the triumphant 1971 Lions tour in New Zealand when coach Carwyn Jones married his natural flair to that of Welsh greats Barry John, John Dawes, JPR Williams and Gerald Davies.

Duckham thrived, scoring 11 tries in 16 appearances on that tour, including six in one game against West Coast-Buller.

His performances amid the Welsh environment earned him the nickname 'Dai' Duckham.

The winger was also part of the Barbarians famous 23-11 victory over the All Blacks at Cardiff Arms Park in 1973.

"Coventry Rugby is incredibly sad to learn of the news that David Duckham, ex-Coventry, England and British and Irish Lions player, has died, aged 76," read a statement from Coventry.

"Donned as arguably the greatest ever Coventry player, our thoughts go out to David's family at this difficult time."