"Over the Moon" - Danny Care Confirmed for Babarians Test Against Fiji at Twickenham - Ruck

“Over the Moon” – Danny Care Confirmed for Babarians Test Against Fiji at Twickenham

The Barbarians have confirmed that England legend Danny Care will don the famous black and white jersey, and take on Fiji this Summer at Twickenham. This will be the first time that Care has played for the historic invitational side, with the announcement coming after he recently retired from international duties with England.

The 37-year-old will make one final run out at Twickenham (after the Harlequins Big Summer Kick-Off), as he joins an all-star line-up that is headed up by New Zealand coach Robbie Deans. Care joins his fellow ex-England scrum half Ben Youngs, and former international teammate Zach Mercer and Jonathan Joseph

Danny Care of England arriving before the six Nations Championship match, between England and Ireland at Twickenham Stadium, London , UK, on the 17th March 2017. (Photo:Dean Lancaster/PPAUK)

Care is relishing the prospect of joining them in the famous black and white hoops.

“I’m absolutely over the moon to be chosen to represent the Barbarians this summer,” he said. “You don’t get too many firsts at this stage of your career, but this has been a long time coming!

“It’s nearly happened a few times over the last few years, but now the stars have aligned and I cannot wait to finally wear that famous black and white shirt. To do it at Twickenham as well is going to be so, so special for me.

“It’s hard to pinpoint what I am most excited about, as I’m really looking forward to experiencing the whole week. I’ve heard so many amazing stories from really good friends of mine who have done it before.

Danny Care of Harlequins during the Gallagher Premiership Rugby Match between Gloucester Rugby and Harlequins at Kingsholm on 17 February. Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK

“The chance to meet, bond, train with and then play alongside a group of players who I have admired and played against before in my career is going to be a unique experience. I’ll also get the opportunity to run out alongside some old friends as well, which will be really cool.

“I’ve always watched the BaaBaas with such affection because of their style and how the team approaches the game. I feel like the Barbarians and myself could be a match made in heaven, so I really can’t wait to throw my own bit of flair into an already incredible team.”

Care’s rugby career began at Leeds Tykes, before a move south to Gallagher Premiership side Harlequins beckoned when he was 19 years old.

Danny Care of Harlequins during the Gallagher Premiership match between Harlequins and Sale Sharks at Twickenham Stoop, London on 8 January 2023 (Photo: Micah Crook/PPAUK)

The scrum-half has gone on to play an astonishing 369 times for Harlequins, breaking the club’s all-time appearance record in February 2023 and winning two Premiership titles (2011/12 and 2020/21), one European Challenge Cup (2010/11) and one Anglo-Welsh Cup (2012/13) along the way.

Care has also represented England at nine levels, coming through the age-grade system and enjoying a stint in the Sevens code where he won a Commonwealth Games silver medal. He made his debut for the Red Rose against New Zealand in 2008, and became only the sixth male player to reach a century of Test caps earlier this month.

In total Care scored 84 points for England (15 tries, three drop goals), and won three Six Nations titles in 2011, 2016 and 2017 – including one Grand Slam. He also played six times in England’s Rugby World Cup campaign last year, featuring in every knockout match and the Bronze Final where Steve Borthwick’s side secured the competition’s third-place medal.

Danny Care of England during the England Captains Run at Twickenham Stadium, London on 9 February 2024 (Photo: George Beck/PPAUK)

The scrum-half has lined up against the Barbarians five times in England colours (2008, 2009, 2010, 2017, and 2022), but the Killik Cup clash against Fiji on June 22 will mark his debut in the black and white hoops and ticks yet another item off Care’s rugby bucket list.

He said: “I’ve played against the Barbarians quite a few times, facing some absolute legends of the game in the process.

“There’s been some bad memories of playing against them as well for sure! I’ve chased a lot of shadows, missed some tackles and got beaten up a few times. So, I can’t wait to experience being in that side, putting on that black and white jersey for the first time, and trying to put on a show for the thousands of fans who will turn out to watch at Twickenham.

“You never know when it will be your final time running out at Twickenham, so it’s really nice to know I am definitely heading back there again so soon after I announced my international retirement.

Danny Care of England during the Six Nations Match between England and Wales at Twickenham, London on 10 February 2024 (Photo: Tom Sandberg/PPAUK)

“The stadium is a place that holds so many amazing memories for me – not least the one a few weeks ago when I got to run out for England for the 100th time with my kids by my side – so it will be a special day and my family are excited to see it.”

Over 45,000 people have already secured their tickets for the biggest rugby showcase of the summer.

Wales take on South Africa at 2.00pm before the Barbarians lock horns with Fiji at 5.15pm, and Care believes the event in south-west London is certain to have something for everyone to enjoy.

He added: “As a rugby fan, what more can you ask for? Wales vs South Africa and then the Barbarians vs Fiji is an incredible feast of rugby, so I would implore everyone to snap up their tickets and get down to Twickenham to see two incredible games.

“We happen to be taking on another ‘Barbarians-style’ team given the way that Fiji approach the game as well, so it’s going to be an amazing spectacle and I’m really happy to be playing a part in it.”