Scarborough RUFC coach Simon Smith pays tribute to Manning Smith

Coach Simon Smith has paid tribute to ex-Scarborough RUFC winger Manning Smith, who tragically passed away over the weekend at the age of just 22.

Thursday, 5th December 2019, 11:16 am
Updated Thursday, 5th December 2019, 11:17 am
Former Scarborough RUFC wingers Manning Smith in action during his stint with the club. He tragically passed away aged 22 at the weekend

Smith impressed during a short stint at Silver Royd at the end of the 2018/19 campaign before a knee injury prematurely ended his stay in the UK and he returned to his native New Zealand.

“He was a ray of sunshine, a truly infectious young man,” said coach Smith.

“He was such a talented, confident young man who everyone was fond of during his stay with the club and his loss has been felt by everyone.

“My lasting memory of Manning will be him walking in the dressing room in bright pink boots and his phenomenal try against Bridlington when he collected a kick-off on the bounce with one hand, beat several men and dived over - it was possibly the best individual try I have ever seen.

“We held a short service before training on Tuesday night in the changing room, which was understandably pretty emotional for everyone.

“We’re planning on a minute’s silence before the Malton & Norton game on Saturday to remember Manning, and there’s a number of other ideas being considered by the club.”

A Scarborough RUFC statement read: “It is with great sadness that the club learned of the passing of former player Manning Smith. The thoughts of all the players, volunteers and club officials are with Manning’s family and loved ones at this time.

“He was a genuinely warm, caring and funny person and he will be sorely missed.”

Smith’s family have set up a donation page to support with funeral costs, which can be found via the online version of this story or on request by emailing [email protected]