|‘Cardiff’ Jones by SHS |
The reason for the unusual first names is that his real name is not known. What we do know is that the player was from the valleys of Wales. In the St. Helens Newspaper [30-10-1942] it states that: “Jones of Cardiff will figure at centre and Hughes, a big forward will come with Jones. Both players are attached to the military units close by and may be available for some time”. Given the proximity, for example, of Haydock RAF base and Burtonwood Airbase, this is where the players may well have been stationed. Alas, the big forward did not show for the match against Keighley. Jones played, however, in the right centre position, with Bob Grundy outside him.
The match report was full of praise for another Welshman, a true legend of the game called Jim Sullivan, who, unfortunately, was playing for Keighley! The St. Helens Newspaper talked of him in glowing terms: “From the very first minute the Welsh wizard set out to show how ridiculously easy first-class full-back play is – when you know how – and he kept it up almost to the very last, despite the fact that he is now slightly past the first blossom of youth”.
Keighley won 12-7, although it had been a doughty performance from the home side, whose backline read as follows: J. Davies, Kelly, Balmer, Jones and Grundy. “The St. Helens backs were carrying another inexperienced player,” said the Newspaper. “Jones, a Cardiff amateur, gaining his experience of the professional code was willing enough, but no match for [Keighley’s] Towill and Higginbottom, two strong, thrusting centres on the opposition”.
It is not known what happened to our ‘guest’ centre, but there are several players with the name ‘Jones’ who played for Cardiff out wide during the early post-war years that may well be connected, but this is mere speculation. Please not that the date is notional and is only for our own statistical purposes.