Cap No 1123
Gareth Anscombe became only the seventh New Zealand-born player to play for Wales when he came on as a replacement in the first World Cup warm-up game against Ireland at the Millennium Stadium in 2015, following the footsteps of Hemi Taylor, Dale McIntosh, Shane Howarth, Brett Sinkinson, Matt Cardey and Sonny Parker.
He qualified for Wales through his Welsh-born mother, Tracy, who hails from Cardiff. His father, Mark, is the former Auckland, Ulster and Canada head coach.
He first grabbed the rugby headlines when he was the top points scorer with 84 at the 2011 Junior World Championships in Italy playing for New Zealand. That haul included 22 points, with 11 out of 12 conversions, in a 92-0 hammering of Wales in a pool match. He was named man of the match in the final in which New Zealand beat England, scoring 18 points with a perfect seven out of seven goal kicks.
He played at full-back for the Chiefs in their 2013 Super Rugby final victory over the Brumbies. He also played for the Blues in Auckland before signing for Cardiff Blues in 2014. He received his first Welsh call as part of a 34-man squad for the 2015 Six Nations, but didn’t get a game. He went on to make his international debut against Ireland on 8 August, 2015, at the Millennium Stadium.
His Wales bow came as a replacement at outside-half for James Hook, but his first two starts were at full-back against Australia and South Africa at the 2015 World Cup. His first international start in the No 10 jersey came against Japan in November, 2016. He was the starting outside-half in four of the five Grand Slam matches in 2019 and scored 43 points. That total included 20 of the 25 points in the crucial final game at home against Ireland.
He helped Cardiff Blues win the European Challenge Cup in 2018 by kicking a vital late penalty in a 31-30 win over Gloucester in Bilbao. In the summer of 2019 he switched regions and joined the Ospreys.