1910 British Lions tour to Argentina
|1910 British Combined |
Tour to Argentina
The 1910 British Isles team
|Date||26 May – 17 June|
|Tour captain(s)||John Raphael|
|Test series winners||British and Irish Lions (1–0)|
|Top test point scorer(s)||Harold Monks (10)|
The 1910 British Lions tour to Argentina is a retrospective term applied to the tour of Argentina made by a side made up of 16 English players and 3 Scots. The organisers of the tour named the team the "English Rugby Union team", but the host country advertised the touring team as the British Combined ("Combinado Británico" in Spanish). The 1910 team has been termed as one of the three "lost lions" tours, and is detailed on the British and Irish Lions official website. For Argentina, this tour marked the start of international rugby union and the test against the Combined British on 12 June 1910 was the first Test in the Argentine national team's history.
In 1910, a British side toured South Africa for the fourth time, being the eighth outing of a British touring side at this point. The South African tour was, however, the first official tour, in that it had the official sanction of the four home unions. Concurrently, RV Stanley, more famously known as Major Stanley of Oxford, later an England selector, organised a side to tour Argentina. John Raphael, the England fullback, was selected as the captain of this team, branded by Stanley as the England Rugby Union team. The hosts referred to the team as the Combined British, perhaps more appropriate given the squad included three Scots.
The tour was also part of the celebrations for the 100th anniversary of the May Revolution. The people of Argentina termed it the "Combined British", also known as "Great Britain XV". Argentina made its international debut against this team under the name "The River Plate Rugby Football Union" on 12 June. The match was played at Sociedad Sportiva Argentina of Palermo and Argentina lost 28–3. The only try for the Argentine squad (the first international try) was scored by Buenos Aires F.C. player Frank Heriot.[note 1] . Argentina's most notable players were captain Oswald St. John Gebbie and Barrie Heatlie, a South African that had been played for the Springboks.
The Combined British played six matches, winning them all, including a victory over Argentina in their first ever test on 12 June 1910.
Of those representing the Combined British, only four had played international rugby previously. They were:
- John Raphael, (Old Merchants Taylors', Oxford University, Surrey) played fullback for England (also a notable cricketer);
- Alexander Palmer, (London Hospital, Harlequins) a New Zealander who played on the wing for England
- Barrie Bennetts, (Penzance RFC and Cornwall) played on the wing for England
- Anthony Henniker-Gotley, (Oxford University, Kent, Blackheath) played at halfback for England
Other members of the team were:
- Harold Gordon Monks (Liverpool Old Boys, Wigan RFC and Lancashire)
- Horace Evelyn Ward (Harlequins and Middlesex)
- E.S. Holmwood (Kent)
- William Lovat Fraser (Merchistonian FC)
- Edward Newman Fuller (Old Merchants Taylors', Cambridge University and Kent)
- John Francis Ashby (Cheshire)
- Robert Bertram Waddell (Glasgow Academicals RFC)
- Henry John Fraser
- Walter Legh Huntingford (United Services, Blackheath and Surrey)
- Robin Harrison (Northampton RFC, Midlands RFU and the South)
- Whalley S Stranach (Guy's Hospital and Kent and English Trials)
- Stanley Herbert Smith (Cumberland)
- Martin Tweed (Guy's Hospital)
- Percy Robert Diggle (Oxford University and Cumberland)
- Peter Denny Strang (Old Merchants Taylors' and Surrey)
- SH Milnes
- Henry Whitehead (Manchester FC, Lancashire and North of England)
|1||26 May||Olímpicos A [note 2]||Buenos Aires||n/i||19–13|
|2||29 May||Belgrano A.C.||Buenos Aires||n/i||58–0|
|3||2 Jun||Olímpicos B [note 2]||Buenos Aires||n/i||39–5|
|4||6 Jun||Buenos Aires F.C.||Buenos Aires||Buenos Aires Cricket||28–0|
|5||12 Jun||Argentina [note 3]||Buenos Aires||Sociedad Sportiva||28–3|
|6||17 Jun||Argentinos Nativos [note 4]||Buenos Aires||n/i||41–10|
Argentina: : J.E. Saffery, Cornelius MacCarthy, Oswald Gebbie, M. Heriot, Henry Talbot, W.A. Watson, Carlos Mold, Barry Heatlie, L.H. Gribbell, W.H. Hayman, F. Henrys, A. Bovet, A. Donelly, Alvan Reid
- Some sources cited C. McCarthy (player of Lomas A.C.) as the author of the first try instead Heriot.
- Combined teams.
- The first international game played by Argentina, under the name "The River Plate Rugby Football Union"
- At those times, most of rugby players in Argentina were of British origin. The most important match of each year was the played between "Nativos" (formed by Argentine born players) and "Británicos" (then "Extranjeros") (Foreigner). This tradition was abandoned in the 50's.
- 1910: Argentina by David Walmsley – Genesis Publications – May 15, 2013 on British Lions website
- "El centenario del debut", Clarín, 13 June 2010
- David Walmsley (Author), Robby Elson (Editor), The Lions: The Complete History of the British and Irish Rugby Union Team, Genesis Publications (2005) ISBN 0-904351-96-3
- Dobson, Paul (2 December 2004). "Argentina and the 'Lions' in the past". Planet Rugby. Archived from the original on 8 October 2011.
- "Lions": Los viajes olvidados by Ricardo Sabanes, 16 May 2017
- "De festejo también, pero por el Centenario" by Jorge Búsico, La Nación, 27 May 2010
- British & Irish Lions results on Rugby Football History
- Early Lions: Squads and results (1888–1938) on BBC Sport, 18 May 2005
- Los Lions en Argentina by Frankie Deges on Mundial XV website, 21 Jan 2013
- 1903-1910 – SUCCESSES UP TO WWI on British Lions website
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