San Diego Legion obtained Hugh Roach for the 2024 Major League Rugby season after a trade that sent Jason Higgins to the Chicago Hounds. The 31-year-old hooker is 5’10” and 235 lbs.
Hugh played 313 minutes in 6 matches, starting 5, and scoring 3 tries for the Chicago Hounds in 2023. He carried the ball 28 times for 139 meters, and defensively, made 50 tackles in 60 attempts.
Hugh played 786 minutes in 12 matches, starting 10, scoring 7 tries, and 66 carries, totaling 409 meters on the season (6.2 MPC), and made 144 tackles for Austin Giilgronis in 2022.
In 2021 he played 666 minutes in 11 matches, starting 9, scoring 7 tries, and carrying the ball 66 times for 384 meters (5.8 MPC), and made 97 tackles for the Gilgronis. He then played with Union Sportive Arlequins Perpignan in France.
Hugh joins the Gilgronis after earning 50 Super Rugby caps since 2014. He won a Super Rugby Championship with the Waratahs in 2014 and a Mitre 10 Cup title with the Tasman Makos in 2019. What may surprise some is that away from the rugby pitch is that he has been a Justice of the Peace in New South Wales, Australia since 2018.
Hugh is from Sydney, Australia, and played Junior rugby with Hunters Hill Rugby Club, as well as at Newington College where he attended from 1997-2010. Sam Harris knows him well, as he was his rugby coach for some of his stay there.
Hugh follows his father’s Graham path as a hooker, as he played for Western Suburbs in the Shute Shield. Hugh, however, would achieve greater rugby fame with his Super Rugby experience.
Hugh’s rugby prowess was evident early on as he made 11 appearances for the Australian Schoolboys in 2009-2010, which is tied for the most by any player. He also made 10 appearances for Australia U20s from 2011-2012. In 2011 he played against Fiji, Samoa, and New Zealand, while in 2021 at the IRB Junior World Cup, he made 4 appearances against Scotland, Argentina, and France twice.
Following high school, Hugh spent time in the Brumbies Academy from 2010-2011. From 2012-2018 he played with Eastwood in the Shute Shield. He was named Rookie of the Year in 2013 and won the Championship in 2015. After the Final, he was named Man of the Match by the TV broadcasters.
His performance for Eastwood in 2013 led to his selection for Western Force against the British and Irish Lions in June of that year. He also joined the Super Rugby Waratahs in 2013 and made his debut on 18 May 2014 off the bench in a win over the Lions. He would go on to earn 41 caps for the team through 2018, as well as a championship in 2014.
While playing for the Waratahs, he also played for the Greater Sydney Rams in the National Rugby Championship from 2014-2017.
In 2019 he moved to Melbourne to play with the Rebels. A shoulder injury derailed his playing until round 8, but he would make 8 appearances through round 16. He also played with the Tasman Makos in 2019, making 10 appearances, as well as winning the Mitre 10 Cup. He then signed a contract with the London Irish, however, a foot injury then led to the contract’s termination.
In 2020, Hugh gained his 50th Super Rugby cap in his sole appearance for the Crusaders against the Sunwolves. The Crusaders would go on to win the 2020 Super Rugby Aoteroa title.
Hugh’s Educational achievements
While at Newington College, Hugh was a volunteer with the Salvation Army from 2008-2010. The construction management courses taken had them design, build, and install beds at the center. If also gained his TAFE NSW Construction Building and Site Management 3 & 4 certifications.
Hugh attended the University of Canberra majoring in sports journalism from 2011-2012 and earned a Diploma in Business at Vocational Training Academy Australia, where he attended from 2014-2015. He also earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Human Resource Management and Services at Macquarie University, where he attended from 2013-2018.
Hugh also attended the Australian College of Sport Fitness, earning a Certificate 4 in fitness, personal health improvement, and maintenance.