Wallaby Hammon dies aged 90
January 12, 2004

Rugby is mourning the passing of the oldest Wallaby Test player, Bill Hammon OBE, who has passed away at the age of 90.

A centre, Hammon (pron Ham-un) played one Test for the Wallabies, against South Africa in 1937.

Originally from New Zealand, Hammon migrated to Australia in 1934 and he went on to captain Victoria between 1936-38 where he played his club rugby for St Kilda.

Under Hammon's captaincy, Victoria achieved a rare victory over New South Wales in 1938, winning 24-13.

The oldest Wallaby remains Stan Bisset who toured with the 1939 side to Europe, which arrived in London in time for the outbreak of World War 2 resulting in the cancellation of the tour.

Like Bill Hammon, Bisset also represented Victoria playing for the Powerhouse Club and was part of the victorious 1938 state side that beat New South Wales.

Hammon and Bisset later served in the army together in Syria before being posted to separate theatres of war.

Bill Hammon subsequently survived three years in a Japanese prisoner of War camp in Java.

He was awarded the OBE (Military Division) and the citation reads:

"Captain Hammon served with courage and leadership in the Syrian campaign and also in Java where, as adjutant of his battalion, his example maintained the morale of all ranks he contacted. He became a prisoner-of-war in March 1942 and later the camp adjutant of a large prison camp where he displayed high leadership and initiative. On numerous occasions his firm attitude towards the Japanese resulted in the relief from working parties of sick and weakened men at the cost of cruelty meted out to himself. He did much to relieve the other prisoners-of-war from brutal treatment of Japanese guards."

The oldest living Test playing Wallaby is Gordon Stone, aged 89, who played one Test against New Zealand in 1938.

Live Sports

Communication error please reload the page.

  • Football

  • Cricket

  • Rugby

    • Days
    • Hrs
    • Mins
    • Secs

    F1 - Monaco GP

  • OtherLive >>

    Snooker - China Open
    Tennis - Miami Open