The British & Irish Lions ran amok the first time they played in Perth, notching a record 71-3 win that stood for 44 years and 212 matches as the tourists’ highest score.
The great Llanelli and Wales wing forward Ivor Jones and Redruth’s Roy Jennings each scored four tries as the Lions ran in 16 all together – a record that stood until 2005 when the Lions scored 17 against Manawatu. Jones ended with a match tally of 16 points as he also kicked two of the eight conversions.
The game was very much an exercise in spreading the rugby gospel in Western Australia and was the last match of the 1930 tour through New Zealand and Australia. Eight-three years on and the Lions will be playing a fully established, professional team in Perth in what will be the opening game in Australia on the 125th anniversary tour.
The Lions sailed to Freemantle from Melbourne, arriving on the Otrano, and were feted on their arrival. In what was described as ‘a rather racy speech’ one of the local dignitaries, Mr CJ Moran, had this to say about the Lions:
“I have been having a look at you, and I am glad to welcome such square-jawed men from the old country. Someone said recently that the British race was degenerating. I wish to goodness they had sent a few degenerates to-day. (Laughter.) I must congratulate the old country on the samples of manhood it is turning out.”
On their last outing in Perth 12 years ago the Lions set two more records with their 18 tries and 116 points in the 116-10 victory over a Western Australian XV.
22 September, 1930, Brennan Park
Western Australia 3 British Lions 71
HT: 3-31 Att: 6,000
Western Australia: G McGann; M Carpenter, D Sinclair [capt], E McQuade, D Palmer; I Welch, W McLean; H Cummins, A Berry, C Walters, T Drager, H Dawes, H Richards, A Gregg, J Quigley
Scorer: Pen: M Carpenter
British & Irish Lions: G Bonner; R Jennings, H Bowcott, T Knowles, T Jones-Davies; R Spong, P Murray; S Martindale, H Jones, H Rew, M Dunne, D Parker, I Jones, J Farrell [capt], W Welsh
Scorers: Tries: I Jones 4, R Jennings 4, H Bowcott 2, T Jones-Davies 2, W Welsh, D Parker, R Spong, J Farrell; Cons: S Martindale 3, I Jones 2, W Welsh, H Rew, J Farrell; Pen: D Parker; DG: T Jones-Davies
Referee: H Mealand (Australia)