My name is Rhys, a first time dad blogging about my adventures and experiences of being a parent. [email protected]

Wales player’s football trophies to be auctioned

Trophies awarded to David ‘Dai’ Owen Jones, a popular Welsh international full-back of the 1930s, are to be auctioned this month.
The auction will take place at Leicestershire-based Gildings Auctioneers at 10am on Tuesday October 10th. It includes an impressive silver-plated table lighter modelled as a dragon, thought to be made by Mappin & Webb. Engraved with the inscription “Football Association of Wales, International Champions 1933 & 1934, Presented to Mr. D.O. Jones”, it commemorates Wales winning The British Home Championship, the annual home nations tournament which ran for 100 years from the 1883-84 season.
The collection, which is being sold intact, also features a Football Association of Wales 1935-36 international cap, an F.A.W badge and a silver-plated trophy for the British Home Championship and Triple Crown, again won by Wales in 1936-37. The collection is estimated to sell for between £4,500 and £5,000.
In addition, the auction features a 1936-37 9-carat gold Football League Division Two Champions’ medal from Jones’s remarkable 14-year career at Leicester City, as well as photographs and other ephemera, including two family-compiled scrapbooks of newspaper clippings.
Dai Jones, who was born in Cardiff in 1910 and died in Oadby, Leicestershire in 1971, began his football career at the Cardiff club Ely United, before moving to Ebbw Vale at the age of eighteen. Transfers to Millwall and Clapton Orient (now known as Leyton Orient), led to him being signed to First Division Leicester City in May 1933 for a bargain fee of £250. He made his international debut for Wales in the British Home Championship in November 1933, when he played in a 1-1 draw against Northern Ireland, which was followed by a 2-1 win over England. He went on to achieve seven caps playing for Wales.
“We’re delighted this unique collection will be staying intact as it finds a home with a new custodian who will appreciate its original owner’s role in Welsh footballing history,” comments Gildings director Will Gilding. “As well as being an evocative symbol of Welsh footballing success, the dragon table lighter, which was awarded to Jones following his debut for Wales, is an unusual and attractive decorative object in its own right. The Welsh cap is a rare item to come on to the market and the British Home Championship trophy is another fantastic relic of a century-long UK footballing tradition and Jones’s success in it in the 1936-37 season.”
Dai Jones’s hard work and versatility on the pitch made him a sporting celebrity of his era, with him featuring on a collectable cigarette card for the tobacco company Ogden’s. After a British Home Championship performance in a 2-1 victory over England in February 1936, he was feted in the press as ‘the game’s outstanding performer. He was clean kicking and made well-judged interceptions and timely tackles.’ Against Northern Ireland a month later, despite Wales losing the game 3-2, Jones was described as ‘the outstanding defender on the field, rarely placing a foot wrong and positioning with great skill.’
Jones played for Wales until 1937, with his club career lasting until 1949. Only the third Leicester City player to be called up for Welsh international duty, he made almost 300 appearances for Leicester between 1933 and 1947, including in 54 wartime matches while he was serving in the RAF. Following the war, Jones also returned to his day job as a sales executive in Leicester’s shoe industry.
“Currently, we are seeing great demand for football memorabilia and it’s particularly interesting to have these fascinating items from a very popular and talented international player who was described as ‘the smiling footballer who laughs his way through the whole 90 minutes,’” adds Will Gilding.