Cardiff RFC Season Review 1910 – 1911

1910-11. P36, W29, L6, Dl. Points 483—135.



R. A. Gibbs was our captain and Joe Pugsley was. his vice-captain and there was a most inauspicious start. After the first match with the District XV which was won by seven goals, 35 points to nil, the three following matches were lost to Pontypool, Bristol and Newport But there was a splendid recovery and not another match was lost until 18th February, when, at Neath we lost by 6 points to 3. Reggie Gibbs was one of the best wings in the club’s history, a fast, resolute runner with a strong hand-off, quite a stern captain and disciplinarian. He achieved many top scoring feats, the greatest being that of scoring four tries and kicking nine goals which gave him the record number of 30 points in one match against Moseley on 7th January 1911.

He gained sixteen Welsh caps, and in his season of captaincy he shared in Cardiff’s achievement of providing the whole three-quarter line against Scotland, Ireland and France, namely R. A. Gibbs, W. Spiller, L M. Dyke and J. L. Williams, and, but for the preference for Fred Birt of Newport over L. M. Dyke for Wales against England. Cardiff would have provided Wales with all its three-quarter backs for its four internationals, a feat probably unparalleled in the history of international Rugby football. In the match against Scotland, the Cardiff three quarters scored 29 out of the 32 points for Wales. Wales won the Triple – Crown for the seventh time and Joe Pugsley also played in the four internationals. For the Irish match at Cardiff, Westgate Street was veritably besieged after the gates were closed, hundreds clambered over the stonewalls into the ground, hundreds were still left outside.

Included in the season’s victories were “ doubles “ over Leicester. Moseley, United Services, Llanelly, Blackheath, Barbarians and Devonport Services. The former strong club Moseley were given two thrashings, by 43 points to 3 at home, and 63 points to 3 at The Reddings, and in each of these matches J. L. Williams scored four tries. The Yorkshire club, Headingley, was met away on tour with Moseley in January and was beaten by 14 points to 5. The United Services were able to turn out some eight internationals against us, including Lt. G. H. D. O’Lyon, F. R. Batry, N. A. Wodehouse who captained England,

A. D.Warrington, H. C. Harrison, who were naval lieutenants and upper deck men, but the Services XV were well beaten. The match with the Harlequins on 17th April at home. which we won by 10 points to, 5, was reported as being one of the brightest ever seen on the Cardiff Arms Park, and apart from excellent forwards the “ Quins “ could command some of the finest backs England had produced such as the brothers F. M. Stoop and Adrian Stoop, J. G. Birkett, D. Lambert and H. J. Sibree.

J. L. Williams with 27, R. A. Gibbs 22, and 18 from Willie Spiller were the top try scorers, and First Team caps and blazers were awarded to Frank Holbrook, J. Clem. Lewis, E. Mithan, Con Scanlon and Edgar Smith. Clem Lewis had clearly established himself as the club’s outside half and his total of thirty-three’ appearances was the highest number amongst his colleagues, the next in order being the captain R. A. Gibbs and Billy Spiller each with 32, Edgar Smith played 31 times and J. Daley, Joe Pugsley, R. F. Bobby S Williams and George Yewlett each played 30 matches.

The Second XV was captained by Frank Wood, and his vice-captain was Donald Duncan. They had an admirable record with 24 wins out of 29 matches with 3 lost and 2 drawn, the points scored were 435 to 69. The best scorers were Charley Bryant with 21 tries, T. Loveluck 14, Tommy Reardon 8, and Ivor James and Jack Crowley with 7 each. Six second Team caps were presented, the recipients being Charley Bryant, T. Loveluck, G. Caple, A. Green, Corporal Murphy and Ernie Hill. Having held a ground record for the second season in succession, the eligible players were presented with medals to commemorate the achievement. Charley Bryant was to become a first team player before and after World War I, and in fact gained international caps for Ireland.

From a balance of £778 on the season’s working, donations were made to King Edward Memorial Fund £50, Cardiff Cricket Club £50, six charities received £23.18.Od., the Cardiff Schools’ R.U., the Cardiff & District Union and Old Boys received in all £71.15.Od. . . . It was proposed to increase the club membership from 10/- to 10/6d. and allow them to see all club cricket matches for the season on the Cardiff Arms Park, and that the committee would hand over to the Cricket Club the sum of 1/6d. per member. In spite of having had a good season, there was mild criticism at the end of it, of committee men—mainly former players, for not turning up often enough on training nights.

Cardiff 16 13 0 3 396 243 61
Carmarthen Quins 17 10 3 4 372 278 54
Aberavon 16 11 0 5 371 272 53
Llandovery 16 9 2 5 344 285 48
Pontypridd 18 10 0 8 394 376 47
Merthyr 18 8 0 10 362 374 44
RGC 1404 17 8 1 8 409 381 43
Newport 15 7 0 8 294 278 37
Swansea 17 7 0 10 246 292 35
Llanelli 15 6 0 9 293 412 27
Ebbw Vale 17 4 2 11 283 351 27
Bridgend Ravens 18 3 0 15 271 493 19