Ex-Newport RFC star reunited with kit in Australia
12:30pm Saturday 5th January 2013 in News
AN 84-YEAR-OLD former star of Newport RFC has been reunited with his kit following a 10,000 mile journey.
Former prop and hooker John Phillips, contacted Newport RFC to ask if they could return his memorabilia to him, as his British Army shirt and caps had been on display in the club museum for several decades.
Mr Phillips emigrated to Perth, Australia in 1986 and had loaned his British Army shirt, cap and Welsh Secondary Schools cap to the club, which were stored in the club museum.
Mike Dams, Newport RFC Historian, said: "When John, who is now 84 years old, contacted us and asked if we could return his memorabilia, we fully understood and were happy to arrange the 10,000 miles return to Australia. His British Army shirt and caps had been proudly displayed in the club museum for many years."
Mr Phillips sent a letter of thanks to Mr Dams and the club, along with a picture of himself with his newly returned memorabilia.
He joined Newport RFC on April 18 1953, and in his first match Newport won 8-0 against Neath. During his time at Newport RFC from 1952-3 to 1958-9 he made 126 appearances scoring 4 tries.
Mr Phillips was born in Swansea and played for Welsh Secondary Schools 1944-6 captaining them twice. He represented the British Army when they played against the Royal Navy in 1948 and met the then King George VI.
Mr Phillips played for Swansea as a schoolboy and played for the All Whites in 1946 against the New Zealand All Blacks.
In 1955/6 Mr Phillips established himself as key member of the Newport team, as he was able to play either prop or hooker, and often understudied Bryn Meredith, although he was a brilliant hooker in own right.
He played against Australia in 1957 when Newport had a magnificent 11-0 victory.
During his illustrious career he played for Crawshays in 1950 and 1955, Barbarians, Welsh Academicals four times, Hampshire, Glamorganshire and Monmouthshire.