Martin Bayfield is a presenter, reporter and former England rugby player.
At 6’10″ Martin was one of the tallest players in rugby, which he used to full advantage as one of England’s forwards. He enjoyed a successful international career, winning 31 England caps and 2 Five/Six Nations Grand Slams from 1991 to 1996, as well as being selected to represent the British & Irish Lions in New Zealand in 1993.
Injury prematurely ended Martin’s rugby career in 1998, but his charismatic personality and natural stage presence enabled him to easily transition into the corporate events and functions sector. Martin is a very popular, MC/host, keynote speaker, after-dinner speaker and auctioneer and is renowned on the corporate circuit for exceptionally funny speeches.
Martin is also well known for serving as the body and stunt double of the much-loved giant Rubeus Hagrid, played by Robbie Coltrane, in the entire Harry Potter franchise. He has also appeared as a cyclops in the film Wrath of the Titans.
Following his retirement from rugby, Martin moved into broadcasting. He was involved in the coverage of the 2011 Rugby World Cup for ITV, and in March 2012 Martin was confirmed as a regular presenter on BBC1’s long-running show Crimewatch. In his broadcasting career Martin has also presented the NFL and Worlds Strongest Man Coverage on UK Channel Five and worked as a rugby correspondent on BBC Radio 5 Live.
In 2015, Martin was announced as part of ITV’s broadcast team for the Rugby World Cup in London; initially as their England reporter, but then continued until the end of the tournament as a main reporter, covering not only England games. Martin was then the main presenter for the BT World Wheelchair Rugby Challenge 2015, which was broadcast live on ITV4.
Martin was also announced as one of the rugby ambassadors for DHL throughout the Rugby World Cup in 2015, alongside his ambassadorial role for insurance company QBE, in which he provided expert rugby analysis.
Martin is currently a key presenter for BT Sport’s Premiership and European Rugby Union fixtures, contributing as a pitch-side reporter, presenter and pundit, as well as being involved in popular shows such as Rugby Tonight for the channel.
Martin has also been a key member of ITV’s broadcast team since 2016, being a regular presenter for RBS Six Nations.
Martin is actively involved with charity, and is the Honorary President of the Wooden Spoon Society, a rugby charity that supports disadvantaged children and young people, as well as Vice President of London Playing Fields Foundation.
The game is faster. The ball is in play longer. There are greater collisions, and more of them. The players are bigger, fitter and faster than ever. The laws haven’t changed.
These modern players are absolute warriors and I love representing them.
Rugby has not “gone soft”