King Charles was left stunned by Wales rugby captain’s ‘deplorable act’

The incident sent shock waves throughout rugby and beyond – but for some reason Wales’ legendary skipper was not sent off

As condolences pour in for the late Wales captain Brian Price, who passed away at the age of 86, a story has surfaced claiming that King Charles was apparently perplexed by an incident involving the Welshman that caused a stir in rugby and beyond.

It was long ago, exactly in 1969, when the great Wales captain Brian Price—the equivalent of Alun Wyn Jones in his day—delivered what became known as the most iconic blow in Five Nations history, taking down Ireland’s Noel Murphy.

Charles was sitting in the stand at Cardiff Arms Park when it appeared right in front of him, younger than his years.

A few months before he was crowned Prince of Wales, the twenty-year-old would have been excused for a wince.

When he first started playing rugby at Gordonstoun School, he remembered that his evil bosses had allegedly placed him in the second row so that “systematic assaults on me in the scrum went unseen.”

This provided additional proof of the rough and tumble nature of the oval-ball game. Early in the game, second-row Price unleashed a right hook that knocked flanker Murphy in front of the royal box.

“He turned towards the grandstand, his head high and dignified, befitting a prince of Irish players, as though imploring the sympathy of the young Prince of Wales seated in the royal enclosure,” it was later stated of the Irishman. “Then, like a felled oak, he crashed to the ground!” The audience roared!”

Remarkably, Price was not sent off by the referee, which led BBC broadcaster and pundit David Coleman to inquire, “What do you have to do to be sent off at rugby?”

The Times erupted with fury, declaring, “It was the depth of bad manners,” along with “it was a deplorable act of ruffianism.”

Murphy most likely felt that it went beyond simple etiquette.

Years later, Price—who was never renowned for punching or other violent on-field behavior—accountably acknowledged that there had been a pre-match plot to take aim at Murphy, the master ball-killer and one of the greatest players in Welsh rugby history.

Let’s acknowledge right away that there was a Murphy Plan, he remarked. It was fairly easy. Noel would tackle Gareth Edwards after he picked up the ball from the scrum and moved to the side. Next, we would all start stepping on Noel a little bit.

However, the intended object of Welsh attention wound up taking a blow in front of a royal. After a lineout, Price remarked, “I found some fingers around my eyes and got the ball back.” “I pivoted and unleashed a fury. When the late Scottish referee Doug McMahon stared at me, I knew I was going. I’m heading in front of the Prince. Fortunately, the referee saw that it was a retaliatory move, alerted me, and awarded Ireland a penalty.

Never once was the new King questioned about the uproar surrounding his first visitation to the Arms Park. However, a lot of people may still recall the match that gave rise to the headline “A right royal punch-up” in the South Wales Echo’s match report.

Wales prevailed 24–11, preventing Ireland from winning the Triple Crown. McMahon, the referee, never officiated another international game.

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