The caps fit!
TWO out of three aint bad when it comes to solving the mystery of the lost sporting caps.
The Evening Post turned to its readers this week to help identify the owners of several pieces of memorabilia discovered in a forgotten drawer at the newspaper’s former Adelaide Street base.
Amongst the find were a purple velvet cap with a gold trim and a three feathers badge with the word trial and the date 1927-8 emblazoned underneath.
A second cap of blue velvet with silver trim and dated 1923-24 bears a badge similar to that of the famous Barbarians invitation rugby side, while the third cap, possibly for football, is green velvet, with a red dragon and the lettering WSFA and W v S, dated 1920.
Now the owner of the first two caps has been identified as Alf Parker, one of three Swansea rugby playing brothers who played for the Whites. He later hired deck-chairs out on Swansea beach.
While Tom and Dai Parker went on to be capped by Wales Alf had to be content with a spot on the replacement’s bench.
Keen rugby historian Tony Lewis, secretary of Kenfig Hill RFC, explained: “Alf Parker played fro Swansea from 1919 to 1925 and then moved to Llanelli and played from 1915 to 1933.
“He was one of three brother who played for the Whites at the same time. His brothers Tom and Dai played for Wales and he is said to have been the best forward never to get a cap. He was reserve for Wales however in 1927.”
Explaining another mystery - why the trial cap had WFU on its badge instead of WRU as in use today he said: “The Welsh Rugby Union was known as the Welsh
Football Union until 1935.”
Mr Lewis believes that the blue cap was awarded for playing for Swansea RFC.
Although the owner of the third cap has yet to be identified it is thought that it was awarded to someone who played for the Welsh schoolboy team.
FAW historian Ceri Stennett said: “It’s a Wales schools cap awarded for the game against Scotland in 1920. The game was played at Hampden Park and Wales lost 3 nil.
“Of that team Dick Shattock, E Thomas and Freddy Haines.”