1921/1922 Australia Tour of Great Britain & France
10 December 1921 • KO 14:00
16 v 21
Taff Vale Park, Pontypridd
Referee : Fred Mills
NORTHERN UNION CODE. AUSTRALASIANS BEAT WALES.
COMPARISON OF RIVAL HANDLING METHODS. By OBSERVER.
A critical adherent to Rugby Union rules wear able to make many interesting comparisons between the amateur and professional codes after witnessing this heavy scoring game at Pontypridd on Saturday. It was, undoubtedly, a brilliant and exhilarating imbibition, but the matter of apportioning the credit for its very successful spectacular ride between the performers and the node under which they played is highly controversial. My owe opinion is that inch clever exponents of back-play as the Australasians would, in a Rugby Union game, have produced equally as satisfactory football. Every Fame depend s upon its exponents. and in this resort to the Northern Union organisers were greatly favoured in being able to show South Walians so competent a aide as the Colonial tourists in opposition to a Welsh team.
THE NORTHERN UNION OBJECTIVE. Everyone readily appreciated what objectives the Northern Union rules are aimed at. Generally they strive to attain continuity of play, to give an incentive to attack, and to discourage the merely negative measures of defence. In two or three instances the designers of the code have achieved masked success - as all who saw Saturday's game not only admitted, but were eager to emphasise — but in other eases an improvement in Rugby Union rules was not perceptible. Those who have been unutterably bored by the endless and aimless kicking to touch indulged in by post-war amateur players warmly approved of the Northern Union prohibition of kicking out of play except under certain circumstances. This provision alone compelled the play on Saturday to he much taster and more open. and called forth initiative, resource, and judgment from the fall-hacks. In propelling the defending half-back to remain behind his forward until the ball is heeled and passed out, the Northern Union authorities hare succeeded in abolishing obstruction in this phase of the play, in greatly minimising the number of breaches of the off-side lair, and in increasing the opportunities of the three-quarters to handle and pass.
ABOLITION OF THE LINE-OUT. I cannot quite see the advantage of doing away with the line-out, which, if properly worked and controlled, is not only an interesting variant to scrummaging, hut the starting point of the brightest of passing movements. The Rugby Union Roles which apply to the aftermath of a tackle appear to be better than those of the other rode as they were operated on Saturday. In the former case the tackled player most immediately get off the ball or place it At once on the ground, but in the game under review the only blemish was the leisurely method with which the ball wan brought into play again after a plover had tern tackled. The forwards would surround him in scrum-like formation Anil had to wait whilst he slowly gut to his feet and dropped the ball. It was quite as irksome to the spectators as the formation of a set scrum.
WELSH TEAM UNFORTUNATE Taking the game as a whole, the Welshmen were somewhat unfortunate in being returned the losers, despite the scintillating back-play of the Australasians in the first half. The handling of the tourists in the first period was magnificent, and tackling of a high order had to be used to hold them in check. In the second half the Welsh forward. played grandly, and practically monopolised the attack, but their hacks lost several opportunities of wiping out the arrears. George Oliver, Edgar Morgan and Tom Woods were outstanding figures. They played the forward game practised in South Wales — clean healing, quick breaking up and following up, deadly tackling of backs. and sweeping rushes—and there tactics in the second half put the Australasians off their game.
SULLIVAN'S WONDERFUL KICKING. The wonderful kicking of Sullivan, the ex-Cardiff full-buck, was one of the features of the Welsh team's display and of the halves and three-quarters Johnny Rogers and Howler were the pick. Horder and Blinkhorn did not belie the reputations which preceded them, and, in my opinion, they are the finest wingers playing the game to-day. Vest and Craig were a refreshing contrast to most of our centres, and Johnstone and Thompson a clever pair of halves. All their forwards were exceptionally fast and powerful, but none caught the eye wore than Latta and Burge. who specialised in joining up with the three-quarters in pausing bouts.
Burge (2). Horder, Blinkhorn and Johnstone scored tries for the Australasians, and Johnstone kicked three goals. For Wales Howley and Rogers scored tries, and Gronow (4) and Sullivan kicked goals.
The above report was taken from the Western Mail on Monday 12 December 1921. Please note that without knowing the scorer times, the list of scorers below is not in order.
Team Lists and Scoring Information
|9||Ben Gronow (c)||4||8|
|2 - 0||Ben Gronow||Wales||Conversion|
|4 - 0||Ben Gronow||Wales||Conversion|
|6 - 0||Jim Sullivan||Wales||Penalty|
|8 - 0||Ben Gronow||Wales||Penalty|
|10 - 0||Ben Gronow||Wales||Penalty|
|13 - 0||Tommy Howley||Wales||Try|
|16 - 0||Johnny Rogers||Wales||Try|
|16 - 2||Albert Johnston||Australia||Conversion|
|16 - 4||Albert Johnston||Australia||Conversion|
|16 - 6||Albert Johnston||Australia||Conversion|
|16 - 9||Cec Blinkhorn||Australia||Try|
|16 - 12||Frank Burge||Australia||Try|
|16 - 15||Harold Horder||Australia||Try|
|16 - 18||Albert Johnston||Australia||Try|
|16 - 21||Frank Burge||Australia||Try|