Andrew Ross (Ridge Wood Belgique)

12 mars 2018

Andrew Ross (c. 1880 – 6 April 1916) was a Scottish rugby union player. He was born in Newington, Edinburgh, son of solicitor Andrew Ross, and educated at the Royal High School, Edinburgh. He worked in the Merchant Navy as a marine engineer. He played for Royal High School FP and was capped several times for Scotland between 1905 and 1909.

He was in Canada when World War I started and joined a Canadian regiment. He was killed in Belgium fighting with the 29th Canadians (Tobin’s Tigers). He is buried in Ridge Wood Military Cemetery, Belgium.

Andrew Ross was born in Newington, Edinburgh. He was the oldest surviving son of Andrew Ross, Ross Herald, and William Frances Ross née Gillon. He had seven siblings. He attended the Royal High School, Edinburgh, where he proved to be an all-round athlete, and an excellent swimmer. Aged sixteen, he was apprenticed on the Glenfyne, sailing from Dundee, round Cape Horn, to Iquique. After returning to school for a year, he was apprenticed to a firm of engineers.

Rugby career :
After leaving school, he played for the Royal High School former pupils team, gaining a reputation as a fast and courageous forward. He earned selection for Edinburgh, and on 2 December 1899 played in the Inter City game against Glasgow : it was the first time in ten years that Edinburgh beat Glasgow. He was also a keen oarsman, rowing with the East of Scotland Rowing Club of Leith.

Ross’s career as a marine engineer took him overseas, but returning home in 1904, he played again for Edinburgh, beating Glasgow 6–3. Following this match, he was selected for the Cities team to play against the Rest on 14 January 1905. His performance earned him selection for Scotland in the Home Nations fixture against Wales at Inverleith on 4 February 1905.Ahead of the game, the press was divided on which side would win, with the Scots having the home advantage and the better forwards, and the absence of Wales’s Dick Jones at half back was seen as detrimental. Yet it was reckoned that if the Welsh backs got sufficient ball, they would be too clever for Scotland. The weather would also play a crucial role. For his part, Ross was expected to make "strong impressions in more than one sense". Before the game, the Evening Express said of him :

Andrew Ross has a particular bulldog style of play, and is known among his opponents as "Hackenschmidt". This is his first honour, and it is pretty certain that some of the Welshmen will feel sore before the game is through.

In the event, the weather was fine and favoured Wales, which beat the home team 3–6, in front of 20,000 spectators. The Scottish forwards "looked a fine, powerful lot", with their average estimated to be 10 lbs greater than the Welsh. The Scots scored first, through Little, but the Welsh captain, Willie Llewellyn, evened the scores before half time, and sealed the Welsh victory with a second try in the second half.

Ross was kept on for the rest of the championship, playing against Ireland on 25 February, and England on 18 March. Against England, he broke his ribs early in the game but played on to the end.

Returning once again to Scotland in 1909, Ross was recalled to the Scottish XV, playing against Wales on 6 February, and against Ireland on 27 February. Having lost to Wales at home for only the second time in 1905, Scotland repeated the defeat in 1909, losing 3–5 (a penalty to a converted try), in a game that was noted chiefly for poor refereeing.

He died on 6 April 1916, age 37. He buried to Ridgewood Military cemetery (Belgium near Ieper)