Rugby legend granted final wish by club shortly before his death


A rugby membership veteran was given the best present simply weeks earlier than he died after shedding his cherished cap within the floods throughout Storm Dennis final 12 months.

Pontypridd RFC expressed their condolences on Tuesday following the information that “one in every of its most outstanding former gamers”, Gordon Matthews, had handed away. Enjoying as a prop, Gordon totalled 345 appearances for Pontypridd between 1949 and 1962, and in addition captained the workforce in 1954. He was a cornerstone of the membership’s ahead unit throughout that interval and a extremely influential member of a profitable workforce.

However, after being taken into hospital in April following a fall, Gordon’s well being deteriorated earlier than he handed away earlier this month. His daughter, Carolyn Churchill, spoke of how a sort gesture from a stranger on the hospital helped to make his remaining days a bit extra particular.

Again in February 2020 Gordon, who was 97 when he handed away, misplaced his cherished Pontypridd RFC cap when his home was devastated by the floods throughout Storm Dennis.

When he was at hospital somebody had overheard him speaking concerning the cap, and contacted Pontypridd RFC to see if they may get him a brand new one.

Gordon Matthews was dedicated to Pontypridd RFC

Carolyn mentioned: “He was devastated about that cap. They contacted Pontypridd RFC. I did not know something about it. It was such a beautiful gesture. Pontypridd RFC have been a large assist since his passing. They’ve been fantastic, and it is so good that they nonetheless consider him the best way they do.”

Carolyn defined her father initially performed for Cardiff in his youthful days till he was requested if he might assist out at Pontypridd. As soon as he arrived on the membership he by no means regarded again.

“The day he married my mum, he married her after which went to have a recreation of rugby,” she mentioned.

“He was a really robust character, and a really loving father. The children are going to overlook him drastically. He was at all times a large Ponty supporter, and something to do with rugby actually. He used to deal with timber by Citadel Coch to maintain him slot in his youthful days. He would practise scrums.”

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The loving daughter additionally spoke fondly about how her mom would go up the wall when youngsters would knock the door when her father was round 40, and ask him to play rugby with them. She added: “Youngsters would go to the door, and ask if he might have a recreation of rugby.”

An previous image of the workforce throughout Gordon’s taking part in days

A tribute from Pontypridd RFC learn: “Gordon linked up with Pontypridd RFC as soon as extra just a few weeks earlier than his passing. Sadly his a lot cherished membership cap had been misplaced in the course of the floods of 2020, which hit his house in Nantgarw. While Gordon was in hospital Pontypridd RFC organized for a alternative cap, which was delivered by his previous workforce mate, Graham Gittins. The donation was funded by the Associates of Pontypridd.

“Gordon Matthews handed away final week aged 97. The ideas of everybody at Pontypridd RFC are along with his household and shut buddies of their time of grief.”

Depart your tribute to Gordon within the feedback under and to seek out out extra information from Pontypridd go to inyourarea/Pontypridd


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