TRIBUTES have been paid to a former Rotherham Titans player killed in a hit and run crash in Italy.
Brendan Lynch, aged 26, who played tighthead prop for Rotherham Titans and was born in Sheffield, suffered fatal injuries after he was knocked from his Honda SH300 scooter in the early hours of Monday in Rome.
Brendan had moved there recently and played for Capitolina, the city’s main rugby club.
Rotherham Titans chairman Nick Cragg said: “Clearly we are very upset at the loss of Brendan Lynch.
“Brendan was a key part of our playing squad during our first season at Rotherham Rugby Club.
“More importantly Brendan was a lovely young man, who shared our values and those of our wonderful game. Our thoughts and deepest sympathies go to Brendan’s family and friends.”
Born in Rotherham, Brendan made five first team appearances for the Titans, scoring one try during the 2004-05 season.
Following his departure from Clifton Lane he moved to Ireland, where he represented Ireland at Under-19 level due to his Irish ancestry.
He was working for the UN’s Food and Agriculture Organisation in Rome and was a regular first team player for Italian club Capitolina.
Police said Brendan’s scooter was hit by another car as he travelled on the Rome ring road near Settebagni just to the north of the capital and the vehicle had then sped off leaving him fatally injured by the side of the road.
Passing motorists alerted emergency services but he was declared dead at the scene.
A friend said: “He was a really nice guy, really friendly and always had a smile. He will be sadly missed.”