Dick Pym

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Dick Pym
1929FACF.jpg
Pym (left) playing in the 1929 FA Cup Final
Personal information
Full name Richard Henry Pym
Date of birth 2 February 1893
Place of birth Topsham, Exeter, Devon, England
Date of death 16 September 1988(1988-09-16) (aged 95)
Place of death Exeter, Devon, England
Playing position Goalkeeper
Senior career*
Years Team Apps (Gls)
Topsham
1911–1921 Exeter City 39 (0)
1921–1931 Bolton Wanderers 301 (0)
1931–1932 Yeovil & Petters United
Topsham
National team
1925-1926 England 3 (0)
* Senior club appearances and goals counted for the domestic league only. † Appearances (Goals).

Richard Henry Pym (known as Dick Pym; born Topsham, Exeter, Devon, England, 2 February 1893, died 16 September 1988) was a football player best known for being the Bolton Wanderers goalkeeper at the first ever FA Cup final to be played at Wembley Stadium in 1923.

The game, known as the White Horse Final because of the presence of a mounted white police horse at the helm of the crowd control, ended in a 2-0 win for Bolton. Pym had joined them from Exeter City two years earlier for a world record five thousand pounds. Pym, nicknamed Pincher Pym, won further FA Cup winners medals with Bolton in 1926 and 1929 and earned three England caps.

Dick Pym, born into a fishing family played for a local club in his hometown Topsham, initially as a centre-forward before moving to Exeter City in 1911. There he played his first game in the reserves in December and on 23 March 1912 he debuted in the first team, replacing the regular goalkeeper. He subsequently appeared in 186 consecutive matches in the Southern League for Exeter.

In 1914 he toured with Exeter under manager Arthur Chadwick Argentina and Brazil, playing in Rio de Janeiro the Brazilian national football team in its historic first official match.[1]

During the First World War Pym joined in 1916 the Devonshire Regiment where he served as Physical Training Instructor.

When Exeter City joined the Football League in 1920 Pym was sold to Bolton Wanderers at the end of the 1920/21 season for the enormous sum of ₤ 5,000 to enable the club to purchase its home ground, St James' Park.

Pym debuted for England on 28 February 1925 at a 2-1 win over Wales. The following month he played in a 2-0 victory over Scotland. On 1 March 1926, again playing Wales, he got his third and last cap. Pym left Bolton after 336 matches for the club in 1930 to play for another year with non-league Yeovil Town FC. After this he returned to the fishing industry.

He became the last-surviving member of the historic 1923 Bolton Wanderers team and lived until he was 95, earning him the record for the longest-lived England footballer.

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