Former Neath and Wales prop Glyn Shaw has passed away after a long illness aged 71.
Glyn was without doubt one of the mightiest forwards ever to play for Neath RFC – which is quite a testimony given that there have been so many in the Club’s 150-year history.
After being capped at Youth level as a second row from Seven Sisters, Glyn Shaw joined Neath in 1970 and soon made his mark, making a try-scoring debut in a 26-3 win over the West Wales R.U.
He rapidly established himself in the exceptionally powerful Neath pack of the time usually alongside Norman Rees and Walter Williams in the front row.
He was capped by Wales ‘B’ in 1971 and he was in the Neath team which capped the Club’s centenary year by beating Llanelli 15-9 at Cardiff to win the inaugural WRU Cup fifty years ago.
He represented the Public School Wanderers in the Neath RFC Centenary Sevens (won by the home club) and his inclusion caused some merriment among Neath supporters at the time as he had been schooled in the Dulais Valley !
He earned his first Wales cap in 1972 alongside team-mate Dave Morris against New Zealand when Wales lost 16-19 after J.P.R. Williams had a try controversially disallowed and he went on to win 12 caps, displacing the revered Charlie Faulkner to break up the Pontypool front row.
Blessed with remarkable strength, energy and speed, Glyn Shaw was a prop ahead of his time with his exceptional mobility. Regrettably, few Neath supporters were present at Pontypool when he caught a kick off and ran through the entire bemused home pack and raced to score at the posts.
“Props aren’t meant to do that !” shouted one flabbergasted Pontypool supporter – quite !
He was elected captain of Neath RFC in 1977/78 but succumbed to the charms of rugby league in November of that season and joined Widnes RL and he made a successful transition up north where he became a double international, representing both Wales and Great Britain.
His business interests kept him in the north but he regularly returned for Former Players re-unions and was honoured to be accepted into the distinguished ranks of the Neath Rugby Supporters’ Club “Hall of Fame”.
Neath RFC’s thoughts and sympathy are with his family and friends at this sad time. MP