Edgar Billings was a talented all-round sportsman playing cricket, rugby and water polo for Swansea, in addition to regularly appearing behind the stumps for Glamorgan from 1911 until the outbreak of the Great War.
Having been coached as a youngster by Billy Bancroft and Dan Thissen, Edgar’s county debut came in 1911 after some excellent performances behind the stumps in club cricket for Swansea, plus some good work in conjunction with spinner Harry Creber. Edgar’s debut for Glamorgan came during June 1911 as he played against Wiltshire at Trowbridge.
He appeared in four further games as well as against Carmarthenshire during mid-July where he was able to display his batting prowess by completing his maiden fifty on his home turf at St Helen’s. Like many of his generation, the War put a premature end to his county career. Having led Swansea in 1914, Ernie resumed the captaincy when cricketing activity resumed at St. Helen’s.
At the age of 39, his best years were behind him but his outstanding record of having more stumpings than catches to his name for Glamorgan bore testament to his abilities behind the stumps, as well as an almost innate understanding with his spin bowling colleagues. Short and squat in physique, Edgar was a builder and architect by trade, and continued to play for Swansea until the late 1920s. His son Ernie followed in his father’s footsteps by playing cricket for the Swansea club, besides serving on the Glamorgan committee.
BILLINGS, Edgar Arthur.
Born – Swansea, 8 May 1882.
Died – Mumbles, 9 September 1952.
Batting and Fielding Record
Minor County Championship – 62 v Carmarthenshire at St. Helen’s, Swansea, 1911.
Minor County Friendlies – 35* v Northamptonshire at St. Helen’s, Swansea, 1914.