07 May 2020

The HKRU are saddened to learn of the passing earlier today of our beloved former national coach and Technical Director George Simpkin, after a brave battle against cancer.


During his 10 year tenure at the Union from 1988-99 George helped change the face of local rugby, and alongside KK Chiu also introduced the game to Mainland China. Whilst taking the men’s national team to new heights in the Pacific Rim tournament and to the brink of World Cup qualification, he equally led the development of the local game through his work with his beloved Hong Kong Dragons, from whose ranks came such important figures as Rambo Leung.


As well as his memorable time in Hong Kong, George also left his mark on the game in Fiji, Sri Lanka and back in his native New Zealand - wherever he and his wife Pip found themselves they left a positive legacy on the rugby, and wider community.

George will also be remembered for his contribution to the development of Sevens rugby , where he was responsible for many of the law variations that have become an integral part of the game.


Despite his illness, In recent years George and Pip had made trips back to Hong Kong for both Pac Rim and Dragons reunions, and shared many happy memories with those whose lives they had so positively touched on.


All over the world rugby players will be telling stories about George, and raising a glass to a true legend of the game; the Union sends its deepest sympathy to Pip and the rest of the family - and when social distancing measures allow we will arrange an appropriate gathering to honour his memory.

Gents, the funeral home has an online tribute page where you can view George’s obituary and leave a message for Pip and family.