Second death in 4 days hits Hong Kong's rugby community

Kowloon's British captain David Tait, 25, found dead after falling from roof of apartment block

PUBLISHED : Friday, 14 December, 2012, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 14 December, 2012, 8:41am

The 25-year-old British captain of Kowloon Rugby Football Club was found dead in an empty swimming pool at a Hung Hom residential block on Wednesday in an apparent suicide.

Police believe David Tait jumped from the roof of the serviced-apartment block Harbourview Horizon, in Hung Lok Road, at about 3.50pm.

Officers found his belongings on the roof of the building.

The tragedy left the rugby community reeling as it mourned its second death within four days, after DeA Tigers mini-rugby coach Tim Ford was found hanged on Sunday.

Members of the Hong Kong rugby squad will wear black armbands today when they play Belgium in the final of the Emirates Airline Cup of Nations in Dubai.

Hong Kong team manager Dai Rees said: "This is absolutely tragic news. The Hong Kong team will acknowledge the tragic loss of David Tait when we run out against Belgium."

It is understood that Tait lived on Hong Kong Island. No suicide note was found but an initial investigation revealed nothing suspicious, a police spokesman said.

One of Tait's friends had said he was depressed over work, according to police.

The Apple Daily reported that Tait joined auditors KPMG as assistant manager in November last year. The accounting firm declined to comment yesterday.

Tait's death follows the apparent suicide of Ford, 46, who was a vice-principal at King George V School. His body was found by his wife at their home.

"The Hong Kong rugby community is united in grief for the tragic loss of two of our members this week," said Hong Kong Rugby Football Union chairman Trevor Gregory, who is in Dubai to watch the final game in the four-nation competition.

"Both were much loved and respected within the rugby fraternity and there remains a sense of shock at this double tragedy. The thoughts and prayers of all of us at the Hong Kong Rugby Football Union and the entire community are with both families, and we stand ready to support and assist in any way we can.

"The rugby community showed their respect to the memory of Tim with a minute's silence at the school's A Grade final [last night] and the Hong Kong national team will wear black armbands in memory of David in the Emirates Airline Cup of Nations international against Belgium."

Tait, who played professionally for the Sale Sharks Rugby Club in England, was captain of Kowloon, the defending Premier League champions.

The Hong Kong squad, which includes five Kowloon players, was "shocked and devastated", Rees said, adding that he had spoken to Tait - a No8 and flanker - a few weeks ago about his chances of representing the city.

"He had one more year to go before becoming eligible to play for Hong Kong. He was an outstanding player," Rees said.

The five Kowloon members of the team are skipper and full-back Tom McColl, fly-half Chris McAdam, hooker Alex Harris, backrower Matt Stockdale and winger Jonny Reeson.