A Step Back in Time Report 1962/63 v Vardre


(By Percy Jones)

 SEASON 1962/63

The captain for this season was Keith Lewis with Barry Jackson as his vice-captain. This was the third season for the Lewis brothers to play together for the Quins. You will see from the report below on the match against Vardre that Vardre fielded three brothers in the same team in their match against Carmarthen. 

Fixture List for 1962/63


The teams which featured against the Quins in the 1962/63 season were:-

Cwmavon; Skewen; Loughor; Ystalyfera; Burry Port; Vardre; Crynant; Trebanos and Cwmllynfell;

 Haverfordwest; Kidwelly; Gorseinon; Tumble; Ystradgynlais and Blaenavon.

League – played 17; won 14; lost 2; drawn 1 against:-

Friendly matches – played 6; won 1; lost 3; drawn 2 against:-

 Cup matches against:-

Glais: won 5-3; Loughor: won 6-0; Crynant: 3-3 draw but Quins won replay 9-3; Semi-final: lost 5-3 to Tumble at Stradey Park


Carmarthen, 9pts;   Vardre, 3pts.

(By kind permission of the Carmarthen Journal)


Vardre United, one of the youngest sides in the West Wales league, took the field on Saturday with no league victory this season behind them and a heavier, determined Carmarthen pack, aided by a fast threequarter line, slowly wrote the story of another defeat in their fixture list.

This was Carmarthen’s match territorially, but this does not mean that Vardre were obliterated entirely. Indeed, they got even with their opponents in the lines-out and through their hooker Norman James got a fair share of the ball from the tight. But even when James hooked against the head, the lighter tight were unable to get a completely clean heel and get their backs moving effectively.

Vardre’s defensive play was somewhat miraculous. You could not call it good positioning or articulated covering by their backs. It was more or less luck. Carmarthen were given a chance to play copy-book football but there was frequently a Vardre jersey mingling with Carmarthen colours.

Vardre were minoring the ball often and never looked dangerous. Outbursts of enthusiasm were short lived as Carmarthen’s defence was sound. Play was sometimes scrappy but Carmarthen were generally in command. J. Burdett, Vardre’s full-back and one of three brothers playing in the side, relieved tension with his touch-finding kicks. On the day, Carmarthen’s backs looked a promising combination. Half-backs Keith Lewis and Windsor Marks used the touch line to advantage. The two centres, Derek Lewis and Graham Rees were a sound defence, Lewis making some fine breaks.

Rees, a powerful centre if given a chance, will shape well with more games and added experience. Right wing Tudor Lewis scored two first-class tries. A scintillating runner, he brought the onlookers to their feet with his frequent attempts at recording a bumper score. Carmarthen’s pack, benefiting from the return of John Evans at lock and prop forward Barry Jackson, yet missing the second row man Noir Bryan were able to contain the lighter and mobile Vardre pack with ease. Evans and Jackson were always in the thick of things, together with Carmarthen’s two wing forwards Gwilym Beynon and Myrddin Thomas.

Beynon, effervescent and like quicksilver, caught the Vardre backs standing; for one lost count of the number of kicks he charged down.  From the whistle, Captain Keith Lewis was soon using the touch-line which enabled Carmarthen to penetrate deeply into Vardre territory.

From a scrum ten yards from the Vardre line, Carmarthen heeled, Windsor Marks got the ball, weaved to the blind side and fed the ball to Tudor Lewis who streaked for the corner and scored. Marks’ attempt to add the extra points was wide.

After penning Vardre in their own half for some time, Carmarthen were sent back. J. Burdett equalised for the visitors with a 40 yard penalty goal. Carmarthen kept their backs on the move and continually upset the Vardre defensive formation. An attacking Carmarthen threequarter movement ended when Tudor Lewis was brought down feet from the line. The Quins went ahead with a try through Myrddin Thomas but Marks failed to convert. Vardre threw the ball about in the second-half but they lacked the forceful quality to engineer a break through.

John Evans; Gwilym Beynon and Keith Lewis nearly got a try between them and Marks failed with a drop-goal. Then John Evans started a movement. He got the ball out to Keith Lewis who passed it to Marks. Windsor ploughed his way through about six players before giving it over to Derek Lewis. The ball finally ended up in the hands of Tudor Lewis who had no trouble in beating Alan Harries to chalk up his second try. Marks again failed with the kick and seconds before the end of the game, was wide with a 30 yard penalty.