World Rugby Hall of Fame – Induction No.95 – Erith Gwynne Nicholls (Cardiff, Wales and British and Irish Lions) 1874-1939
One of 25 legends inducted into the World Rugby Hall of Fame at Wembley Stadium, London, on 20 September, 2015.
Born: 15 July, 1874 in Westbury-on Severn, England
Died: 24 March, 1939 in Dinas Powys
Nicholls was universally recognised as the outstanding back of his time and a great thinker about the game, both technically and tactically.
Born in Gloucestershire, Nicholls moved to Cardiff with his family at an early age. He played 242 games for his hometown club between the 1892-93 and 1909-10 seasons, scoring 111 tries.
For Wales, he gained 24 caps (1896-1906) and captained the side to six Triple Crowns and victory against the 1905 touring All Blacks. Three years after his Wales debut, Nicholls was selected as the only player from his country to tour Australia with the 1899 Lions. The talented centre played in all four tests, scoring two tries and set up four others as the Lions recovered from an opening test defeat to win 3-1.
After he retired in 1909, Nicholls was a selector for the Welsh Rugby Union. He was posthumously inducted into the International Rugby Hall of Fame in 2005. Gates were erected at the entrance of Cardiff Arms Park in 1949 to commemorate his achievements for club and country.