Full name Ronald Rutherford Elvidge
Born March 2, 1923, Timaru
Current age 91 years 329 days
Major teams New Zealand
|Test debut||New Zealand v Australia at Dunedin, Sep 14, 1946 match details|
|Last Test||New Zealand v British and Irish Lions at Wellington, Jul 1, 1950 match details|
|Test Statsguru||Main menu | Career summary | Match list | Most points | Most tries | Tournament list|
A medical man - he became a leading gynaecologist and obstetrician in Auckland - Ron Elvidge played nine times for the All Blacks immediately after the war. Although only 5'11" and 12 stone he was considered big for the time. He was in the side which were thrashed in South Africa in 1949 but retained his place for the visit of the Lions the following year and made a huge impression on what was his final series. In the first Test he scored the try which gave the All Blacks a draw but his last game, the deciding third Test, was storybook stuff. Shortly before half-time he left the field with a damaged collar bone. In the era before replacements he resumed - the All Blacks were already down to 14 because of a serious knee injury to prop Johnny Simpson - but was a virtual spectator, playing behind the back line. Speaking years later, he recalled: "I know Cleaver [the Lions fullback] was in front of me and Peter Johnstone [a forward switched into the backs because of the injuries] was beside me. I was still shaky and groggy and it was because of that I decided to have a go at Cleaver myself. I was scared that had I passed to Peter, my handicap might not have meant the ball even reaching him." He scored but that was almost the last act of his rugby career as he never played again. "If it had not been for the rules I'd have not gone back," he said. "I'd have to say the rules of the time were absolutely stupid and dangerous."