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Saints great Jeeps dies

Travis PerkinsSponsored by Travis Perkins

Saints, England and British and Irish Lions legend Dickie Jeeps has passed away at the age of 84.

Widely regarded as one of the greatest scrum-halves to play the game, Jeeps made 273 appearances across 13 seasons in the black, green and gold.

It was in 1955, that uncapped Jeeps travelled to South Africa with the Lions, even before his England debut. Once in South Africa, the speed and consistent smoothness of his service from the base of the scrum made him the preferred partner of Welsh stand-off genius Cliff Morgan.

When he retired from international rugby seven years later, no-one had played more Tests for the touring side.

Jeeps remains the Saints' most capped British and Irish Lion and has long since passed into the pantheon of club legends.

He was a naturally gifted sportsman who averaged 100 as a schoolboy batsman and who nearly turned down a pre-season trial at the Saints as it would have meant missing a cricket match.

That was at the start of 1952/53 and Jeeps went on to have a 13-year career at Franklin's Gardens, scoring 48 tries and captaining the club in 1958.

As well as being the first choice Lions number nine for three tours he also held down the England starting spot for 24 tests and captained his nation 13 times.

Jeeps - who went on to become and England selector and RFU President - was among the six inaugural inductees of the Saints Hall of Fame in 2005.