Brian Bevan

Inducted into the Hall of Fame - 1988

BrianBevanHoF

Born: 24 June 1924; Sydney, New South Wales, Australia

 

Died: 3 June 1991

 

Postion: Wing

 

Career Dates: 1942-64

 

Clubs: Eastern Suburbs, Warrington, Blackpool

 

Brian was a legendary rugby league winger who scored a world record 796 tries for Warrington RLFC.

 

Son of former Eastern Suburbs player Rick Bevan, Brian Bevan began his career playing for Easts in 1942. He made 8 appearances for the club, although somewhat ironically, failed to score a try.

 

When World War II began, Brian Bevan decided to join the Navy. He arrived on board HMAS Australia in England in 1946. He had with him a letter of recommendation which was written by former Eastern Suburbs Test winger Bill Shankland. Bevan requested a trial with Leeds, which was a suggestion from Shankland, but the club decided against signing him partially due to his frail looking appearance. Shankland also recommended he try Hunslet if Leeds refused to sign him, but once again he was turned down. He decided to try his luck with Warrington. Warrington decided to give him an 'A' team trial in November in which he scored a try. The club were impressed with his first performance and decided to play him in the first team a week later. The club then decided to sign him on a permanent basis on a £300 contract. He went home for several months to discharge from military service.

 

In 1946–47, his first season, he scored 48 tries for the club which was 14 tries more than any other player in the league. Within four years at the club he had surpassed the club try scoring record of 215 set by John "Jack" Fish over thirteen seasons. On five occasions Brian Bevan was the top try scorer in England. His best season for try scoring feats was in 1952–53 when he amassed a total of 72 tries. Only Albert Rosenfeld has scored more tries in a single season in England. Rosenfeld holds the top two most tries in a season with 78 in 1911–12 and 80 in 1913–14. the 1953–54 season saw him become the highest try scorer in the game's history when he passed the 446 tries mark set by Alf Ellaby.

 

In his career in England, Bevan scored a hat-trick of tries or more in a single game 100 times. Twice he scored seven tries in a single game for Warrington, which is still a club record. During his sixteen year career with Warrington he helped the club win the Challenge Cup twice, three RL Championships, a Lancashire Cup and six Lancashire League titles. He played his last game for Warrington on Easter Monday, 1962. He came out of semi-retirement to play for Blackpool Borough between 1962–64.

 

In all he scored an incredible 796 tries in his career in England in all competitive matches (a world record for tries by a rugby player of either code), 740 of which were for Warrington, in 620 appearances (both club records).

 

The 'wing wizard', as he is commonly referred, died in Southport, Merseyside, England in 1991, aged 66. Thousands turned up for his memorial service a month later which was held on the pitch at Wilderspool Stadium which was at the time the home of Warrington RLFC.

 

He is currently the only player ever to have been inducted into both the Australian and British rugby league Halls of Fame.