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Herb Gilbert

Centre

Player Bio

Inducted:
2008
Birthplace:
Gulgong, NSW
Date of Birth:
18 September 1887
Nickname:
-
Debut Team:
South Sydney
Opposition:
North Sydney
Date:
29 April 1911
Venue:
Sydney Sports Ground, NSW
Representative:
New South Wales, Australia
Clubs:
South Sydney, Hull, Eastern Suburbs, Western Suburbs, St George

Career

Milestones

  • Kangaroo Tour: 1911-12
  • Australian Captain: Two Tests
  • Challenge Cup: 1914
  • Rated No. 70 in Rugby League Week’s Top 100 players: 1992
First Class Games
285
Points
402
Tries
128

Biography

Herb Gilbert made his name as a rugby union centre with South Sydney and won selection for all three union Tests against New Zealand in 1910, scoring two tries in the second Test win and another in the third.

Switching to rugby league in 1911, Gilbert was chosen for the 1911–12 Kangaroo tour, when he appeared in all three Tests and topped the try-scoring list on tour with 20 tries.

His strong running, poise anddefence made him one of the stars of the tour, and he returned to England the following season to join Hull, who paid a then-record price for his services.

In three seasons on Humberside, Gilbert played 114 matches and led them to the 1914 Challenge Cup win over Wakefield Trinity, the first overseas captain to lift the trophy.

He returned to Souths in 1915, played one impressive season with Easts, and then linked up with Wests, where he turned that club into genuine premiership contenders.

Gilbert cut an imposing figure — there were few, if any, opposing backs who could match his impressive physical presence, or his skill.

In 1920, his combination with Viv Farnsworth played a big part in Australia regaining the Ashes.

Gilbert captained Australia in the final two Tests of that series.

He played his final season with the new St George club in 1921, after which he served the Saints as a coach, selector and committeeman for many years.

“Herb had the perfect temperament. I can never recall him getting rattled to the slightest degree.”

Billy Cann 1911-12 Kangaroo team-mate

Career Stats

Club Career

Club
Team Name Competition Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
South Sydney Premiership
1911
1915
1912
1915
23 6 3 - 24
South Sydney City Cup 1915 1915 1 - - - -
Hull England First Class Games 1912 1915 114 57 1 - 173
Eastern Suburbs Premiership 1916 1916 23 6 3 - 24
Eastern Suburbs City Cup 1916 1916 2 - - - -
Western Suburbs Premiership 1917 1920 51 23 - - 69
Western Suburbs City Cup
1917
1920
1918
1920
8 2 - - 6
St George Premiership 1921 1921 8 1 - - 3
St George City Cup 1921 1921 8 3 - - 9

Representative Career

State

State
Team Name Competition Opponent Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
New South Wales Interstate series Queensland
1911
1919
1912
1919
3 1 - - 3
New South Wales Touring teams
1912
1919
1912
1920
5 2 - - 6

International

International
Team Name Competition Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
Australia Tests
1911
1919
1912
1920
7 2 1 - 8
Australia Tour matches
1911
1919
1912
1919
30 25 1 - 77

Other Representative

Other Representative
Team Name Opponent Year Start Year End Played Tries Goals Field Goals Points
Kangaroos Metropolis 1912 1912 1 - - - -
Metropolis Country 1912 1912 1 - - - -

Hall Of Fame Members