Palmer John

by Geoff Pillinger/Mike Curling
Player John Palmer

John Anthony Palmer

Position: Centre/ Full Back/Fly Half

Born:  13:02:1957 in Malta.



Education: Prior Park School Bath and Borough Road College.

Achievements: Bath Captain

Honours: Somerset (24 appearances) England (3 caps), Barbarians (4 caps)

Debut game: 9th April 1975 v Northampton

Final game: 29th April 1989 v Leicester

Number of Appearances: 335

Career details:

A supremely gifted  player who was overlooked by England when in his prime. He was a talented cricketer (as a schoolboy scoring a double century on two occasions) and hockey player.

He was Rugby captain at unbeaten Prior Park School and first appeared for Bath at age 17 against Northampton on the 9th April 1975.

Full playing record:- 3 Caps for England; two against South Africa in 1984 and he came on as a replacement against Ireland in 1986.

John finally hung up his boots after Bath v Leicester Cup Final on 29th April 1989 following an illustrious playing career involving 335 1st XV appearances, 81 tries, 223 conversions, 9 drop goals, 182 penalties and 1343 points.

The record of ‘J.P.’s season of captaincy:-

Played  Won     Lost     Drawn    For     Against

1985-1986       43        33          7            3          1055      507

26/4/86 v Wasps    Won  25-17           JOHN PLAYER CUP WINNERS

He appeared 4 times for the Barbarians scoring 2 tries.

Palmer’s all-round ability is best summed up by Brian Jones in his admirable book – ACE OF CLUBS: “Palmer in the words of the old watchers, had a beautiful pair of hands and was a magnificent kicker of the ball from those hands. His balance and his ability to change pace and to time his passes perfectly, were other assets. But it was his capacity to see openings, and add abrupt changes of direction, so wrong-footing his opponents, followed by sudden acceleration, that made him so exciting a Centre, deft, darting and at times dazzling in his creation.”


This page was added on 18/12/2014.

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