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The Remarkable Elliots

Reference was made in a recent blog to the old time links between cricket and rugby – links which have, in some respects, been broken due to lengthening seasons and the stresses of the modern games. Nowhere in the history of our club can this link be seen more clearly than in the sporting careers of the Elliot brothers.  Edgar and Henry Elliot were the sons of a local timber merchant and were brought up on Carley Hill. Both attended Wellington College in the 1890s where their sporting prowess was immediately recognised. Between 1896 and 1903 Edgar (better known as ‘Tegger’) played rugby 29 times for Durham County (including two championship finals). He also played nine times for the Barbarians, three times for the North of England and four times for England. In 1903 he was on the wing for the Barbarians and his companion centre on two occasions was his brother Henry. One club history noted proudly that even as late as the 1960s, the club had ‘the unique distinction of two brothers providing a complete wing for the famous club’. This was achievement enough perhaps but Tegger was also an outstanding cricketer and in a Durham County history from the 1930s was described as ‘the most brilliant batsman that ever played for Durham’. He also played for Sunderland, for the Minor Counties and the Gentlemen of England. His two games for the ‘Gentlemen’ earned him the right to be described as a first-class cricketer. Henry wasn’t a bad cricketer either and represented both Sunderland and Durham County at the sport. In a game against Northumberland in June 1903 Henry, opening the batting, scored 104 only to be joined by Tegger at number three – and he  went on to score 201. The Elliots were quite a family. Tegger took time off to fight on horseback in the Boer War and later moved to South America where he died. Henry went to California then returned to Sunderland to play cricket and rugby before going back to California where he was elemental in introducing cricket to the West Coast of the U.S.A. Sportsmen to be proud of as our cricketers return to the top ranks of club cricket and our rugby lads fight it out in the last 16 of a national competition!

Pictures of 'Tegger' Elliot prepared for both sports at Ashbrooke.

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