Former England rugby star's wife dies aged 35 after eight-year cancer battle

8 June 2022, 17:34

Former rugby star Tom Youngs' wife Tiffany has died of cancer
Former rugby star Tom Youngs' wife Tiffany has died of cancer. Picture: Instagram @youngs.tom

By Daisy Stephens

Tributes have been paid to the wife of former England rugby star Tom Youngs after she died from cancer at the age of 35.

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Tiffany Youngs, the wife of the former Leicester Tigers, England and British Lions player, fought an eight-year battle with cancer.

Leicester Tigers announced in a statement that she had died, saying they were "deeply saddened" and said Mrs Youngs had battled her illness 'heroically'.

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Mrs Youngs was diagnosed with Hodgkin lymphoma, an uncommon cancer of the lymphatic system, in 2014.

Writing about the diagnoses - which happened when her daughter Maisie was just 18 weeks old - on her website, she said: "It's hard to describe the emotions that run through you when, not only are you trying to adapt to first-time motherhood but also all the hormones, sleep deprivation and lack of control over everything that go hand in hand with the first few months of a new born baby's life."

Three years later she was told the illness was terminal, and given between four weeks and a year to live.

"Being told those words is something that nothing can ever prepare [you] for," she wrote on her website.

"I had to tell all of my family, friends but most importantly my precious little girl.

"This was by far the hardest thing I have ever had to do."

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But then in 2018 she was told she was cancer-free.

"I was in disbelief, complete and utter shock and didn't know what and how to say to tell people, I had convinced myself that people would think I was making the whole thing up," she said.

But, whilst Mrs Youngs' website has not been updated since, her illness later returned and in October 2021 Mr Youngs took 'indefinite leave' to care for his wife in their Norfolk home.

On Wednesday it was announced the 35-year-old had died.

Tom Youngs played for England
Tom Youngs played for England. Picture: Alamy

"Leicester Tigers are deeply saddened by the news that Tiffany Youngs has passed away after her heroic battle with illness," said the club in a statement.

"On behalf of everybody at the club, we send our condolences to the Youngs and Sands families.

"Rest in peace, Tiffany.

"The club will be providing no further details and asks that the Youngs and Sands families have their privacy respected at this time."

Premiership Rugby also reacted to the news, writing on Twitter: "Awfully sad news from @LeicesterTigers- everyone at Premiership Rugby would like to pass on our condolences to Tiffany's friends and family and everyone at the club."