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Wales and British Lions rugby legend Martyn Williams MBE will be hosting a special evening in Bristol next month for business people and rugby fans to mark the end of the Rugby World Cup.

The Born of Rugby Network event is a chance for everyone with a passion for rugby to meet up and enjoy food, drink and good conversation with like-minded souls at Shaftesbury Park, Frenchay, Bristol – home of Dings Crusaders.

The Jolly Hog will be providing the food for the event with its co-founder, former Wales international Olly Kohn, giving a short talk.

The evening, which starts at 6.30pm on Thursday, November 7, is a relaxed networking event with the theme of how the values of Rugby Union can be translated to business and how professional rugby players can move into business.

Guest speaker Martyn Williams MBE played for Pontypridd before moving to captain Cardiff.  The flanker was selected for the British and Irish Lions tours to Australia in 2001 and New Zealand in 2005, and he remains Wales’ most-capped back row forward.

Olly Kohn will also speak about his transition from rugby to industry, launching his Pigsty Restaurant in Bristol and Jolly Hog catering business.

The Born of Rugby Network is the brainchild of Bristol-based business advisor and former Dings Crusaders centre Tim Gear-Evans, who is aiming to establish a pathway for former players into local business and industry once they have left the game.

Tim Gear-Evans said: “Firstly we want it to be a great fun evening for anyone with a passion for rugby. It is fantastic to hear from a legendary player like Martyn Williams and people will get the chance to question him about his career.

“We want to see if there is an appetite for more events like this bringing some of the great names in rugby to Bristol and perhaps create a new business network based on embracing the values of Rugby Union.

“Many rugby players transition into business after they leave the sport and we are keen for them to link up and share the camaraderie they had on the field in their new business roles.

“Sport can be incredibly cruel, but no more so than to professional athletes. Their careers could end in an instant and many have not planned past the end of their next contract. We believe that by creating BORN we can give a natural place for future careers to be supported before the end of a sporting career.”

Tickets for the event, which includes canapes and casual dinner from Jolly Hog, cost £70 and are available from Eventbrite

For further details of the Born concept, contact Tim Gear-Evans on 07971 690071 or email

Mike Davies
Author: Mike Davies