Keith Jarrett (rugby)

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Keith Jarrett
Full name Keith Stanley Jarrett
Date of birth (1948-05-18) 18 May 1948 (age 68)
Place of birth Newport, Wales
Height 6 ft (183 cm)
Weight 13 st 1 lb (183 lb; 83 kg).
School Monmouth School
Rugby league career
Position Back
Professional clubs
Years Club / team Apps (points)
1969-1973 Barrow
National teams
Years Club / team Apps (points)
1970 Wales 2 (3)
Rugby union career
Playing career
Position Centre
Amateur clubs
Years Club / team    
Abertillery RFC
Newport RFC
London Welsh RFC
National team(s)
Years Club / team Apps (points)
British Isles

Keith Jarrett (born 18 May 1948) is a retired Welsh international rugby centre who played union for Newport and league with Barrow. Jarrett is most notable for his early appearances for the Wales national rugby union team where he set point scoring records. Jarrett switched to rugby league in 1969 but illness forced him to retire in 1973 at the age of 25.

Early career[edit]

Jarrett was born in Newport, Monmouthshire,[1] the son of former Glamorgan cricketer Harold Jarrett and attended Monmouth School. Like his father he also played cricket for Glamorgan County Cricket Club. In 1966 Keith Jarrett played rugby union for Newport against Ebbw Vale, shortly after leaving school.


Jarrett played for Glamorgan Second XI from 1965–67, appearing in two first class matches in 1967 - one each against the Indian and Pakistani tourists. He was a middle order bat and change right arm seam bowler.

International career[edit]

Jarrett played his first international for Wales on 15 April 1967 against England, aged eighteen years. He had been selected at full back even though he had never played senior rugby in that position. Newport were asked to play him at full back against Newbridge on the weekend before the international to give him some experience. He did not seem to be much of a success in his new position and at half time, his captain David Watkins, switched him to centre. The following week Jarrett played in his first international and scored a breathtaking try. England won a lineout in their own 25 (as it was then). The ball was passed down the line to English centre, Colin McFadyean, who kicked towards the halfway line. The ball bounced once and was seemingly going in to touch. Instead, Jarret sprinted onto the ball, taking it without breaking stride. He sprinted down the touchline, outflanking the whole of the astonished England defence, to score in the left corner. He converted his own try from just inside the touchline. Besides scoring a try, he kicked two penalty goals and five conversions for a total of 19 points. His performance on the field was so impressive that the match has been known ever since as the Keith Jarrett match and he made the cover of Rugby World magazine two months later. The try has been voted seventh in a poll of the top ten Welsh tries and he is listed on the Welsh Rugby Union Official Website as the scorer of the "Greatest Ever Welsh try".

In 1968 he set a club record of 30 points for Newport against Penarth and was selected for the 1968 British Lions tour to South Africa.

Jarrett played for Wales at rugby union ten times in all, making his final appearance against Australia on 21 June 1969 during the Wales tour of New Zealand and Australia.

On his return from tour in 1969, Jarrett joined rugby league club Barrow for a joining fee of £14,000. He was also selected for the Welsh national rugby league side before he had played his first game for Barrow.

Later life[edit]

Jarrett's rugby career was cut short in 1973, aged just 25, when he suffered a stroke resulting from a hemorrhage. He was unable to achieve his fullest potential.


External links[edit]