Kevin Yates, The only international rugby player born in Medicine Hat in Canada, became the first British player to be awarded a Super Rugby contract when he joined the Hurricanes after becoming embroiled in an ear-biting controversy playing for Bath in a European Cup tie in 1998.
The highly rated loosehead prop who played two tests for England against Argentina in 1997 transferred south of the equator to the Wellington Lions and the Hurricanes following the incisor incident. He played for the Hurricanes in 2000 and 2001, joining together with All Blacks Gordon Slater and Norm Hewitt in the front row in all but four of the Hurricanes’ matches over those two campaigns. Yates spent the 1999 and 2000 seasons with the Lions, helping to lift the NPC in his second year.
Yates played for the Sale Sharks upon his return to the UK at the end of 2000 until his transfer to Saracens in 2004, from where he got his second England call-up as a South African tourist in May 2007. As well as two tests for England a decade earlier, Yates had also played in several mid-week games against the All Blacks on their 1997 UK tour.
Yates was plying his trade for French third division club Nice in 2009.