Selwyn Biggs was another member of the Cardiff brewing dynasty who played county cricket for Glamorgan as well as rugby for both Cardiff and Wales.
Whilst in his final year at school in Cardiff, Selwyn followed his elder brother Norman into the town’s rugby team, before also winning a place in the Cardiff CC line-up, showing rich promise as a lively opening bowler. In 1891 the talented nineteen year-old made his debut for Glamorgan against the MCC in the august surroundings of Lord’s, conceding just 26 runs in sixteen overs during the match. For the next nine years, Selwyn played with much success as a bowler on a regular basis for the county side, claiming over a hundred wickets. For example, in 1892 he took 7/92 against Monmouthshire, before claiming ten wickets in the match against the same opponents the following year.
His wicket-taking abilities also won him a place in the South Wales side that played EM Grace’s Gloucestershire XI in a fund-raising fixture at the Arms Park in 1894. Selwyn claimed another ten wicket haul in 1896 against the MCC at the Arms Park, including a career-best return of 8/48 from sixteen overs. By this time, he had completed his legal training and his work as a solicitor prevented him from playing regularly in the Minor County Championship from 1897. However, he found time in the winter months, to train and play for Cardiff RFC and after some impressive performances at fly-half for the town club, he made his debut for Wales in 1895 against England.
This was the first of nine caps which Selwyn won, in addition to captaining Cardiff RFC in 1897/98. He also played rugby for Richmond, London Welsh, Bath, Somerset and the Barbarians, whilst after retiring from cricket, he also proved to be more than adept at golf. His sporting career and legal work though came to an abrupt end as he was badly gassed during the First World War in the Battle of Loos in 1915 and, sadly, Selwyn was an invalid for the rest of his life.
BIGGS, Selwyn Hanam.
Born – Cardiff, 2 April 1872.
Died – Weston-super-Mare, 12 January, 1943.
Batting and Fielding Record
Minor County Championship – 26 v Cornwall at Penzance 1897 and 5/53 v Monmouthshire at Rodney Parade, Newport, 1897.
Minor County Friendlies – 47* v MCC at Cardiff Arms Park, 1892 and 8/48 v MCC at Cardiff Arms Park, 1896.