Dylan Hartley

The Hurt
  • The Hurt

  • 'Rugby is great for the soul,' he writes, 'but terrible for the body.'

    Rugby hurts. It demands mental resilience and resistance to pain. It explores character, beyond a capacity to endure punishment.

    Dylan Hartley, one of England's most successful captains, tells a story of hard men and harsh truths. From the sixteen-year-old Kiwi who travelled alone to England, to the winner of ninety-seven international caps, he describes with brutal clarity the sport's increasing demand on players and the toll it takes on their mental health, as well as the untimely injury that shattered his dreams of leading England in the 2019 World Cup.

    The Hurt is rugby in the raw, a unique insight into the price of sporting obsession.

    'Few have had more twists and turns in a pro rugby career' Robert Kitson, Guardian

Dylan Hartley is a New Zealand-born English rugby union player who played at hooker for Northampton Saints. He was the captain of England from January 2016 until the end of his international career in 2018 and is the country's most capped hooker of all time, earning his first cap in 2008. Dylan captained England to the Grand Slam in 2016, the first time that England had done this since 2003, and to a 3-0 series win in the 2016 Cook Cup against Australia. He retired from rugby in 2019.