King John bids farewell
Barry John, seen here in Lions' colours, retired all too early for his Wales faithful
© Hulton Archive
The King of Wales abdicates his throne. The legendary No. 10, Barry John, was only 27 and at the absolute peak of his powers when he decided to walk away from what he described as the "goldfish bowl" of Welsh rugby, after amassing 120 points in 30 Tests (five for the Lions) from 1966. Twelve of those points, in the form of four penalties, came in his final appearance, against France in Cardiff. A 20-6 victory handed Wales their third win out of three in the Championship, but the escalating political situation in Ireland meant that their bid for the Grand Slam was thwarted.
The end of a long wait for Wales as they seal their first Grand Slam for 39 years. The Championship had already been sewn up with a round of matches still to come, with no other team managing more than a solitary victory until Scotland's victory over England in the penultimate week. France were the visitors for the final game of the tournament, and the winger, Ken Jones, scored two of Wales' four tries in a thumping 21-0 victory at Cardiff. It was the fourth Grand Slam in Wales' history, but they had a much shorter wait for the next one - two years in fact.
A rare scoring feat is achieved. During the Barbarians' traditional Good Friday fixture in their spiritual home of Penarth, they secure a 10-10 draw thanks to a penalty goal, a dropped goal (worth four points then) and a rare goal from a mark. The latter score, worth three points until a rule-change rendered it obsolete in 1977, was achieved when a player claimed a legitimate catch anywhere in the field and called "mark". A place, drop, or tap-kick then ensued.
Newport's Rodney Parade bids farewell to Test rugby. The venue hosted six matches from 1884 to 1912, with Wales winning four and losing two. They signed off on a high, however, as France were defeated 14-8 in a Monday-afternoon match that marked their 13th successive home Test victory.
Wales' boy-wonder, Keith Jarrett, out of favour with the selectors, notches up his 182nd point of the season for Newport, steering them to an 8-6 home win against Gloucester with a try and a conversion. Jarrett became an overnight sensation in 1967, when, aged 18, he scored one of Wales' greatest tries of all time on debut against England, in addition to two penalties and five conversations. He ended up playing just 10 Tests in all, before a stroke in 1973 cruelly ended his career at the age of 25.