1935-36 Season (M)

On Saturday 28th September 1935 Swansea defeated New Zealand at St Helens by 11 points to 3.
Swansea’s win resulted in them becoming the 1st club side to defeat the Southern Hemisphere ‘big 3’, following victories over Australia (1908) and South Africa (1912) [See relevent pages in the ‘Club History’ above].

Swansea had also gained the distinction of being the 1st club side ever to defeat a full New Zealand touring team. Their 11 points coming from Claude Davey (2 tries), Dennis Hunt (try) and a Wilf Harris conversion.

Jack Manchester, the New Zealand captain, proclaimed “tell them back home we were beaten by all means, but please, not by a couple of school kids”, referring of course to the Gowerton grammar ‘schoolboy’ half-backs Haydn Tanner and Willie Davies.

Wales followed this success by defeating New Zealand by 13 points to 12 in a thrilling game on 21st december 1935. Five Swansea players represented Wales that day: Claude Davey, Idwal Rees, Haydn Tanner, Harry Payne and Don Tarr.

Club Captain : Eddie Long

Playing Record : P37, W22, D1, L14, Pts for 341, Pts against 196.

Leading Try Scorer : Not Known

Leading Points Scorer : Eddie Long 48

Capped v New Zealand : Claude Davey, Idwal Rees, Haydn Tanner (d), Harry Payne (d), Don Tarr (d)

Capped v England : Idwal Rees, Haydn Tanner, Eddie Long (d)

Capped v Scotland : Claude Davey, Idwal Rees, Haydn Tanner, Eddie Long

Capped v Ireland : Idwal Rees, Willie Davies (d), Haydn Tanner, Eddie Long


Swansea RFC 1935-36

Played: 37, Won: 22, Lost: 14, Drawn: 1. Pts for: 341, Against: 196.
Back Row L to R: J E  Watkins(Com), Granville Davies, T B  Day, Rees Williams, Cliff Bancroft, James Hunt, Dennis Hunt, Harry Payne, G H  Taylor, Dai White, E D Price, W H Roberts, W E Harris, R S Palmer(Com).
2nd Row L to R: Gwyn griffiths, Aubrey Rees, D B Jones(Com), Edgar Long(Captain), Trevor Davies(Com), Ronnie Williams, Edryd Jones.
Front Row L to R: Joe White, Bob Dowdle(Trainer), Glyn Samuel, Willie Davies, Haydn Tanner, ??, Lee Griffiths. (Club Archive)


The 1935-36 All Blacks train at their base in Newton Abbot…



The 1935-36 All Blacks at Newton Abbot. A signed photo, apparently covered in beer stains! (Club Archive)


Swansea (11) v New Zealand (3) at St Helens on 28th September 1935. Swansea by beating New Zealand this day become the first Club side in the world to have beaten all the ‘Big Three’ southern hemesphere countries, having beaten Australia (1908) and South Africa (1912).

(Above photo) The Swansea side that beat New Zealand

Back Row (L to R): J E Watkins, J White, H Payne, Tom Day, W Harris, D Hunt, G Taylor, D White, E Jones, Trevor Davies, R S Palmer.

2nd Row (P: to R): G Griffiths, R Williams, D B Jones, Edgar Long (captain), Ernest Davies, Claude Davey, Granville Davies.

Front Row (L to R): Bob Dowdle (Trainer), W H T Davies, H Tanner.

(Daily Mail Souvenir)


The teams line up. (Courtesy SWEP) 


A match day programme and stand ticket form the great day (Club Archive) 



A Lineout during Swansea’s historic win over New Zealand at St Helens.  Granville Davies and D White look on with Wilf Harris (5) while Don Tarr, Harry Payne, george Taylor and Dennis Hunt challenge for the ball. (Courtesy SWEP)


Dennis Hunt scores at the Mumbles end. (Courtesy SWEP) 


A 1935 Jack Jones original cartoon illustrating the Swansea v All Blacks match. (Club Archive)

Above, lock W R Collins’ All Blacks jersey from the game v Swansea (Club Archive)

Above: A commemorative carved plaque in the St Helens Lounge celebrates the famous win over New Zealand in 1935. (Club Archive). 


All Blacks lose to Wales at Cardiff…


Merthyr 30 23 0 7 885 593 117
Cardiff 30 22 1 7 991 660 111
Pontypridd 30 22 0 8 1015 580 110
Llandovery 30 21 1 8 856 551 104
Ebbw Vale 30 20 1 9 762 594 95
Aberavon 30 18 2 10 698 603 90
Newport 30 17 2 11 759 700 88
Rygbi Gogledd Cymru 1404 30 14 1 15 852 650 85
Swansea 30 16 0 14 674 594 81
Carmarthen Quins 30 13 1 16 637 584 71
Bridgend Ravens 30 12 0 18 689 714 66
Llanelli 30 12 1 17 679 723 63
Bedwas 30 12 1 17 681 830 62
Cross Keys 30 5 1 24 586 1093 36
Bargoed 30 6 0 24 576 1003 35
Neath 30 1 0 29 406 1274 3