Ben Halfpenny

OVERALL STATISTICS

BIRTHAGESIGNED ONFROM
25-04-1906
N/A
18-04-1927
Widnes
DEBUTLAST MATCHLEFT
10-09-1927 v Swinton
Broughton Rangers
1934- Warrington
CAREERAPPEARANCES (SUBS)
1927-1934
196 (0)
TRIESGOALSDGOALSPTS
59
0
0
177

Biography of Ben Halfpenny



HERITAGE NO : 352
Ben Halfpenny by Dave Dooley:

Ben Halfpenny was born in Ditton, Widnes in 1906. He was signed from Widnes for £250 on the 18th. of April 1927. He was a fast running second row forward who could complete the 100 yards in less than 11 seconds. Ben made his debut in the home 26 points to 20 defeat by Swinton on the 10th of September, 1927. In his first season Ben gained a reputation as a prolific try-scorer netting 16 tries in 31 appearances. This form resulted in his selection for the 1928 Touring team to Australia and New Zealand. This try haul included braces against Hull KR, Broughton Rangers and Runcorn. On the tour Ben scored 8 tries in ten matches but did not make the Test side. He scored his first try for the club in the 21 points to 8 home defeat of Featherstone Rovers on September 24th, 1927.

The Australasian Tour left its mark on Ben as he missed the first 13 matches of the 1928/29 season. Indeed Ben only played 11 matches all season netting three tries in the process. The 1929/30 season saw the Saints back on top form finishing the campaign on top of the league, having won the Lancashire League Championship and in the Challenge Cup Final at Wembley. Ben played his part in this campaign by contributing 17 tries in 44 appearances. This haul included braces against Wigan (away) and York (home) and two tries against Australia playing on the wing in a thrilling 18 points apiece encounter. The season finished on a sour note for the Saints and Ben with two upsets in their final matches. They first lost at home to Leeds in the Championship semi-final and then were defeated by Widnes in the second Challenge Cup Final against Widnes. In many ways Saints were a victim of their own success as the last month of the season saw them playing 13 matches in 35 days - perhaps the tanks were emptying somewhat even for a team which by then were indisputably the best Saints team ever.

Two seasons later Saints were a dominant force once again with Ben featuring strongly in 31 matches. His speed was still evident as he notched 8 tries and an appearance in the 1932 Championship Final win over Huddersfield by 9 points to 5. Saints finished the season as Lancashire League Champions and in second place in the league just one point behind Huddersfield. Ben played 35 matches in the following season including 15 outings as prop forward netting 6 tries in the process.

In the 1933/34 season Ben played in the first two games of the season against Widnes and then an injury put him out for the rest of the campaign. He made his return the following year and scored two tries in eight matches, both against Hunslet. However, a deepening crisis at the Club found Ben being transferred to Warrington in November 1934.

His try scoring feats are ever more creditable given the era he played in. Ben`s 59 tries in 196 games for the Saints (scoring rate 0.30 tries per match) places him 54th. on the all time try scorers list and 11th on the forwards charts. Ben played for England at Rugby League whilst he was at the Club.

Ben Halfpenny by Alex Service

Born in Widnes in 1906, Ben Halfpenny was ahead of his time. He was essentially a running second row forward, long before this became a 'specialist' position for the likes of Dick Huddart in the late 1950s. Saints signed him from his home-town club for '250 on 18 April 1927 and he went on to become a huge favourite at Knowsley Road. Ben gained a reputation as a prolific try-scorer notching 16 tries in 31 appearances by the end of his first full season. He played in England's 20-12 victory against Wales on 11 January 1928 at Wigan, scoring a try and his form was such that he was later selected for the tour of Australia and New Zealand, one of seven St.Helens-based players chosen to make the trip (Ben Halfpenny, Les Fairclough, Alf Frodsham and Alf Ellaby of the Saints, Oliver Dolan, Frank Bowen and Albert Fildes from local rivals the Recs).

According to the St.Helens Newspaper and Advertiser, the likeable Halfpenny was described at the time as: ''.a man of many parts. He is on the laboratory staff at Widnes United Alkali Works, plays the big bass fiddle, dances extremely well, weighs over thirteen stones and can do one hundred yards from scratch well under eleven seconds and is proud of the fact that he was born in Widnes ' so he is indeed a very remarkable fellow.'

Alas, Ben did not figure in any of the Test Matches, Down Under, playing in 10 games and scoring 8 tries, the second row spots being taken almost exclusively by Bob Sloman of Oldham and Frank Bowen of the Recs. Indeed, an injury from the tour restricted him to just 11 matches during 1928/29, but Ben was back to his best the following season, with 17 tries from 44 appearances, as the Saints clinched the Lancashire League title. He even played on the wing in place of the injured Alf Ellaby against the visiting Australians on 16 November and scored two brilliant touchdowns! Yet the campaign was to end in disappointment, with a fixture backlog of 13 matches in 35 days taking its toll. Both the Challenge Cup Final (v Widnes) and Championship semi-final (v Leeds) were lost, although Ben did add a Lancashire League winner's medal to his collection.

Halfpenny made 31 appearances in 1931/32, gaining his second Lancashire League winner's medal and helped the Saints to win their first-ever Championship Final, against Huddersfield at Belle Vue, Wakefield. Ben played 35 matches in the following season including 15 outings in the front row, but his career at Knowsley Road was drawing to a close and he was transferred to Warrington in November 1934, as the St.Helens club was forced to sell off its stars from the start of the decade as a result of a deepening financial crisis. Ben worked as a Chemical Engineer and in 1939 he was living in Upton Lane, Widnes. He died in June 1966, aged 60, and his death is registered in Prescot.


SEASON STATISTICS

Season (Official Matches)TriesGoalsDGoalsMatches
1927~28 16 0 0 31
1928~293 0 0 11
1929~30 17 0 0 44
1930~317 0 0 34
1931~328 0 0 31
1932~336 0 0 35
1933~340 0 0 2
1934~352 0 0 8
TOTALS:59 0 0 196
Season (Other Matches)TriesGoalsDGoalsMatches
1929~30 0001
1930~31 0001
TOTALS:0002

ALL MATCHES

DateMatchPosOpponentsCompVenueFTFTOTGDG
10th Sep 1927 1
L
12 Swinton L H 20 26 VIEW
14th Sep 1927 2
W
13 Dewsbury L H 8 2 VIEW
17th Sep 1927 3
L
13 Hunslet L A 10 12 VIEW
24th Sep 1927 4
W
11 Featherstone Rovers L H 21 8 1 VIEW
1st Oct 1927 5
W
11 Broughton Rangers L A 6 2 VIEW
8th Oct 1927 6
L
12 Swinton LC1 H 7 13 1 VIEW
15th Oct 1927 7
W
12 Salford L H 44 10 2 VIEW
22nd Oct 1927 8
D
12 Hull L A 5 5 VIEW
29th Oct 1927 9
W
12 Wigan Highfield L H 15 5 2 VIEW
5th Nov 1927 10
W
2 Warrington L A 8 4 1 VIEW
12th Nov 1927 11
W
12 Warrington L H 13 0 2 VIEW
19th Nov 1927 12
W
12 Rochdale Hornets L H 10 2 1 VIEW
26th Nov 1927 13
L
12 Oldham L A 2 11 VIEW
3rd Dec 1927 14
W
12 Hull Kingston Rovers L H 25 7 2 VIEW
10th Dec 1927 15
L
12 Featherstone Rovers L A 3 15 VIEW
17th Dec 1927 16
W
12 Leigh L H 37 11 VIEW
24th Dec 1927 17
L
12 St. Helens Recs L A 2 5 VIEW
26th Dec 1927 18
L
12 Wigan L H 13 20 VIEW
29th Dec 1927 19
L
12 St. Helens Recs L H 5 22 VIEW
18th Jan 1928 20
W
12 Dewsbury L A 6 0 VIEW
21st Jan 1928 21
W
12 Hull L H 14 5 VIEW
4th Feb 1928 22
L
12 Leigh L A 5 10 VIEW
11th Feb 1928 23
L
12 Oldham CC1 A 5 15 VIEW
18th Feb 1928 24
L
13 Oldham L H 13 14 VIEW
25th Feb 1928 25
L
12 Salford L A 5 14 VIEW
3rd Mar 1928 26
W
13 Hull Kingston Rovers L A 11 0 VIEW
10th Mar 1928 27
W
13 Barrow L H 15 6 1 VIEW
17th Mar 1928 28
W
13 Broughton Rangers L H 24 0 2 VIEW
24th Mar 1928 29
L
13 Swinton L A 3 5 VIEW
31st Mar 1928 30
L
13 Barrow L A 10 14 1 VIEW
6th Apr 1928 31
L
13 Wigan L A 11 21 VIEW
3rd Nov 1928 32
L
12 Wigan Highfield L H 12 15 VIEW
1st Dec 1928 33
W
11 Oldham L H 21 3 VIEW
8th Dec 1928 34
W
11 Oldham L A 14 11 VIEW
22nd Dec 1928 35
W
11 Warrington L A 13 4 1 VIEW
25th Dec 1928 36
L
11 St. Helens Recs L H 0 5 VIEW
26th Dec 1928 37
L
11 Wigan L H 2 10 VIEW
9th Feb 1929 38
W
12 Lindley CC1 H 32 2 1 VIEW
23rd Feb 1929 39
W
12 Keighley CC2 H 26 5 1 VIEW
2nd Mar 1929 40
W
12 Leigh L H 23 2 VIEW
9th Mar 1929 41
D
12 Wigan CC3 H 2 2 VIEW
16th Mar 1929 42
L
2 Leeds L H 5 20 VIEW
31st Aug 1929 43
L
13 Widnes L H 0 3 VIEW
4th Sep 1929 44
L
12 Leeds L A 5 7 1 VIEW
7th Sep 1929 45
W
12 Widnes L A 21 8 VIEW
14th Sep 1929 46
D
12 Hunslet L H 8 8 VIEW
19th Sep 1929 47
W
12 Leeds L H 22 7 VIEW
22nd Sep 1929 48
W
12 Rochdale Hornets L A 11 7 VIEW
24th Sep 1929 49
W
12 Oldham L H 20 13 VIEW
2nd Oct 1929 50
L
12 Hull L A 5 8 VIEW
5th Oct 1929 51
L
12 Halifax L A 13 19 VIEW
12th Oct 1929 52
W
12 Broughton Rangers LC1 A 10 9 VIEW
19th Oct 1929 53
W
12 Salford L H 18 12 VIEW
23rd Oct 1929 54
D
12 Salford LC2 H 8 8 VIEW
26th Oct 1929 55
L
12 Castleford L H 10 20 VIEW
30th Oct 1929 56
L
5 Salford LC2(rep) A 3 13 VIEW
2nd Nov 1929 57
W
5 Broughton Rangers L A 8 3 1 VIEW
9th Nov 1929 58
W
5 Hull Kingston Rovers L H 24 5 VIEW
16th Nov 1929 59
D
5 Australia Tour H 18 18 2 VIEW
7th Dec 1929 60
W
11 Wigan Highfield L H 8 0 1 VIEW
14th Dec 1929 61
W
11 Barrow L A 12 2 1 VIEW
21st Dec 1929 62
W
11 Barrow L H 19 6 1 VIEW
25th Dec 1929 63
W
11 St. Helens Recs L H 8 3 VIEW
26th Dec 1929 64
W
11 Wigan L H 14 5 VIEW
28th Dec 1929 65
L
11 Castleford L A 0 5 VIEW
1st Jan 1930 66
L
11 St. Helens Recs L A 0 3 VIEW
4th Jan 1930 67
L
13 Oldham L A 4 20 VIEW
18th Jan 1930 68
L
12 Warrington L A 5 22 VIEW
25th Jan 1930 69
W
12 Rochdale Hornets L H 32 5 1 VIEW
1st Feb 1930 70
W
12 Wigan Highfield L A 22 0 VIEW
8th Feb 1930 71
W
12 St. Helens Recs CC1 H 9 7 VIEW
15th Feb 1930 72
W
12 Hull Kingston Rovers L A 16 5 VIEW
22nd Feb 1930 73
W
12 Leeds CC2 A 18 5 VIEW
22nd Mar 1930 74
W
12 Hull L H 23 4 1 VIEW
29th Mar 1930 75
D
12 Wigan CCSF N 5 5 VIEW
2nd Apr 1930 76
W
12 Wigan CCSF(rep) N 22 10 VIEW
5th Apr 1930 77
L
12 Hunslet L A 11 14 VIEW
9th Apr 1930 78
W
12 Swinton L A 8 3 VIEW
12th Apr 1930 79
W
2 Batley L H 19 3 2 VIEW
14th Apr 1930 80
W
12 Warrington L H 23 15 1 VIEW
18th Apr 1930 81
W
12 Wigan L A 8 3 2 VIEW
19th Apr 1930 82
W
12 Broughton Rangers L H 31 17 1 VIEW
21st Apr 1930 83
W
12 York L H 29 0 2 VIEW
22nd Apr 1930 84
W
12 Swinton L H 8 4 VIEW
26th Apr 1930 85
L
12 Leeds ChSF H 6 10 VIEW
3rd May 1930 86
L
12 Widnes CCF N 3 10 VIEW
10th May 1930 --
W
12 Wigan * Fr L 21 14 VIEW
30th Aug 1930 87
W
12 Widnes L A 21 7 VIEW
6th Sep 1930 88
L
12 Widnes L H 5 9 VIEW
13th Sep 1930 89
L
13 Swinton L A 3 12 VIEW
27th Sep 1930 90
W
12 Hull Kingston Rovers L A 21 5 VIEW
4th Oct 1930 91
W
5 Dewsbury L H 12 10 1 VIEW
11th Oct 1930 92
L
12 Wigan LC1 A 7 24 VIEW
18th Oct 1930 93
L
5 Leeds L H 8 20 VIEW
25th Oct 1930 94
W
4 York L A 10 4 VIEW
1st Nov 1930 95
W
4 Bramley L H 34 14 VIEW
15th Nov 1930 96
W
12 Salford L H 7 0 VIEW
22nd Nov 1930 97
W
4 Barrow L A 7 4 VIEW
29th Nov 1930 98
W
13 Rochdale Hornets L H 33 15 VIEW
6th Dec 1930 99
W
13 Wigan Highfield L A 10 7 1 VIEW
13th Dec 1930 100
W
3 Oldham L H 7 2 VIEW
20th Dec 1930 101
W
10 Rochdale Hornets L A 9 2 VIEW
25th Dec 1930 102
W
4 St. Helens Recs L H 7 6 VIEW
26th Dec 1930 103
L
4 Wigan L H 2 23 VIEW
27th Dec 1930 104
L
11 Leeds L A 0 23 VIEW
1st Jan 1931 105
L
11 St. Helens Recs L A 3 5 VIEW
3rd Jan 1931 106
W
11 Halifax L H 20 6 VIEW
17th Jan 1931 107
W
12 Swinton L H 8 3 1 VIEW
24th Jan 1931 108
D
12 Broughton Rangers L A 0 0 VIEW
31st Jan 1931 109
L
11 Huddersfield L H 0 10 VIEW
7th Feb 1931 110
W
11 Keighley CC1 H 46 4 2 VIEW
14th Feb 1931 111
W
11 Bramley L A 19 8 1 VIEW
21st Feb 1931 112
W
11 Castleford CC2 A 8 2 VIEW
28th Feb 1931 113
W
11 Barrow L H 30 0 VIEW
7th Mar 1931 114
W
11 Broughton Rangers CC3 A 8 7 VIEW
14th Mar 1931 115
W
11 Leigh L A 20 19 VIEW
28th Mar 1931 116
L
3 Halifax CCSF N 2 11 VIEW
3rd Apr 1931 117
L
11 Wigan L A 2 5 VIEW
4th Apr 1931 118
L
11 Oldham L A 7 28 VIEW
22nd Apr 1931 119
W
13 Wigan Highfield L H 40 17 1 VIEW
25th Apr 1931 120
W
13 Hull Kingston Rovers L H 25 5 VIEW
9th May 1931 --
W
13 Barrow * Fr Carnival Cup L 33 7 VIEW
29th Aug 1931 121
W
12 Widnes L H 39 2 VIEW
5th Sep 1931 122
D
12 Widnes L A 7 7 VIEW
9th Sep 1931 123
W
12 Barrow L A 12 0 VIEW
12th Sep 1931 124
W
12 Wigan Highfield L H 14 10 VIEW
19th Sep 1931 125
L
12 Huddersfield L A 2 5 VIEW
26th Sep 1931 126
W
12 Dewsbury L H 49 0 1 VIEW
3rd Oct 1931 127
L
12 Oldham L A 13 16 2 VIEW
10th Oct 1931 128
L
12 Salford LC1 A 5 16 VIEW
7th Nov 1931 129
W
12 Wigan Highfield L A 19 4 VIEW
14th Nov 1931 130
W
12 Salford L H 10 2 VIEW
21st Nov 1931 131
W
12 Warrington L A 23 8 1 VIEW
28th Nov 1931 132
W
12 Warrington L H 38 8 VIEW
5th Dec 1931 133
W
12 Bradford Northern L A 31 5 2 VIEW
12th Dec 1931 134
W
12 Leigh L A 16 8 VIEW
19th Dec 1931 135
W
12 Rochdale Hornets L H 33 12 2 VIEW
25th Dec 1931 136
L
12 St. Helens Recs L A 2 13 VIEW
1st Jan 1932 137
D
12 St. Helens Recs L H 7 7 VIEW
2nd Jan 1932 138
W
12 Hull Kingston Rovers L A 5 3 VIEW
9th Jan 1932 139
W
12 Wakefield Trinity L H 11 2 VIEW
13th Jan 1932 140
L
12 Salford L A 3 9 VIEW
23rd Jan 1932 141
W
12 Halifax L H 24 10 VIEW
30th Jan 1932 142
W
12 Swinton L A 8 7 VIEW
6th Feb 1932 143
L
12 Keighley CC1 A 6 12 VIEW
13th Feb 1932 144
L
12 Hull Kingston Rovers L H 5 8 VIEW
27th Feb 1932 145
L
12 Castleford L A 0 5 VIEW
26th Mar 1932 146
W
12 Castleford L H 24 6 VIEW
28th Mar 1932 147
W
11 Leigh L H 31 2 VIEW
16th Apr 1932 148
W
11 Swinton L H 17 5 VIEW
18th Apr 1932 149
W
11 Broughton Rangers L H 21 10 VIEW
30th Apr 1932 150
W
12 Leeds ChSF H 9 0 VIEW
7th May 1932 151
W
12 Huddersfield ChF N 9 5 VIEW
3rd Sep 1932 152
W
12 Widnes L H 16 9 VIEW
10th Sep 1932 153
W
12 Swinton L A 12 7 VIEW
17th Sep 1932 154
W
12 Leigh L H 33 10 VIEW
24th Sep 1932 155
L
12 Hunslet L A 8 15 VIEW
26th Sep 1932 156
W
12 Hunslet L H 21 3 VIEW
1st Oct 1932 157
L
12 Swinton L H 11 37 VIEW
8th Oct 1932 158
W
12 Widnes LC1 A 10 5 VIEW
15th Oct 1932 159
W
12 Barrow L H 18 11 VIEW
22nd Oct 1932 160
D
12 Wigan Highfield L A 11 11 VIEW
24th Oct 1932 161
W
10 Broughton Rangers LC2 H 22 4 VIEW
29th Oct 1932 162
W
12 Batley L H 14 7 1 VIEW
2nd Nov 1932 163
D
10 Salford LCSF A 2 2 VIEW
5th Nov 1932 164
W
10 Leigh L A 13 3 VIEW
7th Nov 1932 165
W
10 Salford LCSF(rep) H 17 10 VIEW
12th Nov 1932 166
W
10 Wigan Highfield L H 34 7 1 VIEW
19th Nov 1932 167
L
10 Warrington LCF N 9 10 VIEW
26th Nov 1932 168
W
10 Leeds L H 21 5 1 VIEW
29th Nov 1932 169
L
13 Batley L A 12 17 VIEW
3rd Dec 1932 170
W
11 Castleford L A 10 7 1 VIEW
10th Dec 1932 171
L
12 Warrington L H 16 18 VIEW
17th Dec 1932 172
L
13 Salford L A 5 13 VIEW
2nd Jan 1933 173
W
2 St. Helens Recs L A 10 5 VIEW
7th Jan 1933 174
W
10 Salford L H 12 5 VIEW
14th Jan 1933 175
L
12 York L A 5 11 VIEW
28th Jan 1933 176
L
11 Barrow L A 17 18 VIEW
4th Feb 1933 177
W
11 Halifax L H 5 3 1 VIEW
11th Feb 1933 178
W
10 Bradford Northern CC1 A 24 3 VIEW
18th Feb 1933 179
W
10 Oldham L H 23 0 VIEW
2nd Mar 1933 180
W
10 Hunslet CC2 H 14 3 VIEW
4th Mar 1933 181
D
10 Broughton Rangers L A 8 8 VIEW
11th Mar 1933 182
W
12 Halifax CC3 H 18 6 VIEW
13th Mar 1933 183
W
12 York L H 9 8 VIEW
18th Mar 1933 184
L
10 Huddersfield L A 4 27 VIEW
25th Mar 1933 185
L
10 Warrington CCSF N 5 11 VIEW
1st Apr 1933 186
L
10 Huddersfield L H 8 31 1 VIEW
26th Aug 1933 187
W
12 Widnes L H 29 14 VIEW
2nd Sep 1933 188
L
12 Widnes L A 4 12 VIEW
22nd Sep 1934 189
W
10 Hunslet L H 30 10 2 VIEW
24th Sep 1934 190
D
10 Liverpool Stanley LC2 H 9 9 VIEW
26th Sep 1934 191
D
10 Liverpool Stanley LC2(rep) A 3 3 VIEW
28th Sep 1934 192
L
10 Liverpool Stanley LC2(2nd rep) N 9 12 VIEW
6th Oct 1934 193
W
10 Hull Kingston Rovers L H 7 2 VIEW
13th Oct 1934 194
L
10 Hunslet L A 0 15 VIEW
20th Oct 1934 195
L
10 Rochdale Hornets L H 6 15 VIEW
10th Nov 1934 196
L
12 Broughton Rangers L A 2 31 VIEW
*Unofficial Match. **Non Playing Sub.
WINS : 117 | LOSSES : 67 | DRAWS : 14

GALLERY







Copyright © Saints Heritage Society 1999-2022