Dorian West was one of the most highly regarded hookers of his era. He spent the entirety of his 17-year playing career at Leicester and, before the game went professional, he was a police officer with Leicestershire Constabulary’s armed response unit.
Dorian made his debut for Leicester in 1988 before joining Nottingham in 1991. His return to Leicester in 1996 saw Dorian become the first front-row starter to score a hat trick of tries for the club. As first-choice hooker, Dorian went on to become a member of the all-conquering Leicester squad of the early-2000s, winning back-to-back Heineken Cups as well as four consecutive Premiership titles.
Dorian made his debut for England ‘A’ in 1997 before earning his first full England cap the following year at the age of 30 against France in Paris. At end of the 2001 season, Dorian was called up as a replacement for the British and Irish Lions squad on their summer tour to Australia. He captained England during their match against France in Marseilles ahead of the 2003 Rugby World Cup and was named in Clive Woodward’s Rugby World Cup-winning squad where he was on the bench for England’s famous victory over Australia in the final in Sydney.
Following his retirement in 2004, West was appointed as a RFU National Academy coach and spent a year with the England U19s before joining Jim Mallinder in the England U21 set-up. Together, Jim and Dorian guided England to the Grand Slam in 2006 and coached the England Saxons to Churchill Cup success before Dorian took up his position at Franklin's Gardens.
During his time at the Saints, Dorian has helped the club make an immediate return to the Premiership, whilst also helping them to the European Challenge Cup in 2008/09 and the LV= Cup in 2009/10. With the club reaching further finals both in Europe and domestically over the following seasons, Dorian played a huge role in Saints double cup-winning success in 2014
Dorian has been instrumental in moulding one of Europe’s strongest set piece groups, with the Saints renowned for both their scrummaging and accuracy at the line out. Dorian also oversaw the rise of Dylan Hartley from the Saints Academy to England skipper. Mikey Haywood is another player to have benefitted from Dorian’s front row expertise having gone from the Saints Academy to being named as the Aviva Premiership Dream Team hooker following his performances during the 2015/16 season.