Arthur Gould (rugby union)
Arthur Joseph Gould was a Welsh international rugby union centre and fullback. He was most associated as a club player with Newport Rugby Football Club. He won 27 caps for Wales, 18 as captain, and critics consider him the first superstar of Welsh rugby. Gould was at the centre of a controversy known as the ‘Gould affair’ that saw Wales withdraw from international rugby for a year.
About Arthur Gould (rugby union) in brief
Arthur Joseph Gould was a Welsh international rugby union centre and fullback. He was most associated as a club player with Newport Rugby Football Club. He won 27 caps for Wales, 18 as captain, and critics consider him the first superstar of Welsh rugby. Gould was at the centre of a controversy known as the ‘Gould affair’ that saw Wales withdraw from international rugby for a year. He worked as a brewery representative after retiring from rugby, and died of an internal haemorrhage in 1919 at the age of 54. Gould’s five brothers were all notable rugby players and athletes. For the first 29 seasons of its existence, Newport RFC always had at least one of the Gould brothers in the team. Gould played for Newport during their “invincible” season of 1891–92, when they did not lose a match, and scored a record 37 tries in Newport’s 24-game 1893–94 season, a club record that still stands. Like his brother Wyatt, he was a keen athlete and made £1,000 during his rugby player years by entering track and field meets. A county champion sprinter and hurdler, Gould finished third in the Amateur Athletic Association Association 120-yard hurdles in 1887. He also ran the 400 m hurdles for Great Britain in the 1908 Summer Olympics. His younger brother Bert, was a centre who played three times for Wales – he appeared with Gould in the Welsh team that won the Triple Crown for the first time in 1893. His other brothers – Harry, Gus and Wyatt – all played rugby for Newport.
Gould captained Newport in 1905–06, and Harry played for them in their inaugural season of1875–76. His brother Bob was a forward who played 136 times for Newport Rugby FC Club, whom he captained in the 1886–87 season, and captained 11 times between 1882 and 1887, and captainained his country once, versus Scotland in1887. Gould also captained the Newport Third XV and later played a few games for the First XV – he was drafted into the senior team as a fullback at age of 18 years old. The young Gould often climbed trees, and thus acquired the childhood nickname ‘Monkey’ which was soon contracted by most to ‘Monk’ Gould was also an ardent sportsman, playing for the local cricket team. He died in Newport, Monmouthshire, on 10 October 1864 to Joseph and Elizabeth. His father, from Oxford, moved to Newport to find work, setting up his own brass foundry business. He had a son, Joseph, who also played cricket for Newport, and a daughter, Elizabeth, who was also a keen sportsman and played for local side Middlesex. Gould had a younger brother, Bert, who played centre who appeared with Newport in the 1882-87 season. Gould and Bert were both capped for Wales in 1885 when he played at fullback against England. By the time Gould retired he was the most capped Welsh centre, a record he held until 1980, with 25 caps in the position. He ended his international career against England on 9 January 1897.