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Bert Solomon

Full name: Bertie "Bert" Solomon
Gender: Male
Born: March 8, 1885 in Redruth, Cornwall, Great Britain
Died: June 30, 1961 in Redruth, Cornwall, Great Britain
Affiliations: Cornwall RFU, (GBR) / Redruth RFC, Redruth (GBR)
Country: GBR Great Britain
Sport: Rugby

Related Olympians: Brother of Barney Solomon.

Medals: 1 Silver (1 Total)

Biography

The son of a miner, Bert Solomon came from a poor background but went on to become one of the finest rugby centres Redruth and Cornwall has ever produced. He left school at the age of 12 to get a job in a bacon factory and around the same time he became interested in pigeon fancying which was his first love until he was persuaded to give rugby a try with his local team, Treleigh. He enjoyed it and soon showed some exceptional skills and was recruited by Redruth. He made his début for them at the age of 19 and by the time he was 21 he was a County player and went on to play for Cornwall 26 times. Consequently, Solomon was sought after by many top clubs but, apart from occasionally helping out Devonport Albion, he remained loyal to Redruth. His outstanding skill in the 1908 County Championship final against Durham virtually won the title single-handedly for Cornwall and he scored two of their five tries. He scored Cornwall’s only try in the Olympic ‘final’ against Australia.

After being selected as a reserve for England on several occasions, his skill eventually got him an England call-up and he made his début against Wales in the first ever international at Twickenham in January 1910. Before the match the crowd were wondering who Solomon was. After the game, they certainly knew, because he made one wonder try and scored a brilliant solo effort as England won 11-6 and inflicted the first defeat on Wales in 12 years. Again, victory was down to a single-handed effort from Solomon who was then penned as “The finest centre in living memory” by the press. Solomon felt intimidated by his wealthier team-mates who came from a different class to him and, despite being selected for England’s three other games that season, he declined to play. He also declined an offer to go on tour with the British Lions and was happier to stay in Cornwall looking after his pigeons and his allotment. His self-inflicted sense of inferiority meant he never played top class rugby again, instead he turned out occasionally for the Treleigh Junior Rugby Club. Bert’s older brother [Barney] also played for Redruth and Cornwall.

Results

Games Age City Sport Event Team NOC Rank Medal
1908 Summer 23 London Rugby Men's Rugby Cornwall GBR 2 Silver

Men's Rugby

Games Age City Sport Team NOC Phase Unit Rank Date Result Position PTS T C P DG
1908 Summer 23 London Rugby Cornwall GBR Final Round Match 1/2 2 1908-10-26 ANZ 32, Cornwall 3 Back 3 1 0 0 0
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