Bramley Hat-trick Heroes - Bramley Buffaloes

Amazingly the first hat-trick of tries scored by a Bramley player after joining the Northern Union in 1896 was when right centre Joe Sedgewick crossed for an incredible seven tries in the 39-3 club record victory against Normanton at the Barley Mow in April 1906, a Bramley record that has never been broken.

It would be just short of thirteen years before right-winger Len Marshall became the second Bramley player to score a hat-trick when he crossed three times in the 33-0 home demolition of York.  Another ten years would pass before left-winger Whitham scored his hat-trick in the 11-5 home defeat of Keighley in the third match of the 1929-30 season.

When Bramley demolished Hull 35-11 at the Barley Mow in March 1932, Whittaker helped himself to four tries as he sped down the right touchline. His quick finishing brought him a total of 23 tries in the two season’s of 1931-32 and 1932-33.

A 13-24 home defeat to Huddersfield March of 1936 saw stand-off Howarth became the fifth player in Bramley’s history  to notch a hat-trick while the following season Bramley fans witnessed another hat-trick when Hull were put to the sword 21-15 with left-winger Hodgkiss being the hero of the match.

The 1938-39 season had right-centre Murphy heading the Bramley try-scoring charts with an impressive thirteen including four in the 37-11 hammering of Leigh in September.  This would prove to be the last hat-trick scored by a Bramley before the start of the second world war.

The 1945-46 season resulted in Bramley having two different hat-trick heroes in in the two-legged first round of the Rugby League Challenge Cup against Hull Juniors as right-centre Jack Gibson scored his in the 29-0 away victory and a week later when left-winger Callagham helped himself to three tries as Bramley registered their biggest-ever victory as they stormed to a 51-3 victory.  This was the first time that two hat-tricks had been scored during a season for Bramley.

September 1948 and Leigh provided the opposition as right-centre Lazenby adding his name to the list of hat-trickers for Bramley in a 24-8 home win.  It would not be until March 1952 before the next hat-trick was scored as Uttley crossed for his three tries in an 11-17 defeat at Castleford.

The 1955-56 campaign resulted in three hat-tricks being scored for the first time in one season with all three being scored by different players, firstly right-centre Kelly scored his in a 17-21 defeat at Keighley, then stand-off Armitage ran in four tries in the 30-11 home victory versus Liverpool City before left-centre Garbutt got his three in the 23-5 home win against Hull KR on his way to creating a Bramley tries in a season record with eighteen to his name.

Right-centre Kelly created Bramley history during the 1956-57 season as he became the first player to score two hat-tricks in the same season when he dazzled first the Dewsbury defence in a 35-13 home victory and then Doncaster at “Tatters Field” as Bramley romped to a 28-0 whitewash.  The following season and Doncaster were on the end of another Bramley hat-trick as right-winger Noble ran in four tries in the 29-5 home win.

Despite creating a new tries in a season record during the 1958-59 season it’s surprising that stand-off Willis Rushton only scored one hat-trick on his way to his twenty tries, this coming in the 15-12 home victory against the “Gallant Youths” of Batley.  As in the 1955-56 season, the campaign of 1959-60 saw three hat-tricks in the season, again scored by three different players.  The first was when right-winger Murthick ran in three tries in the 21-7 victory at Doncaster while right-centre Kelly crossed for an impressive four tries as Liverpool City were thrashed 39-0 at home in the Rugby League Challenge Cup.  The third came in a spell were Brian Wrigglesworth scored seven tries in the final six matches to finish the season with nineteen tries as he notched up his hat-trick in the 29-8 home win against Liverpool City.

A 19-0 home defeat of Keighley in an Eastern Division match brought Bramley’s only three try haul for the 1962-63 season with Smith speeding down the right wing.  Stand-off Brian Wrigglesworth scored two hat-tricks in the first six matches of the 1963-64 season when he starred in the 17-29 home defeat to Barrow and the 40-12 home thumping of Liverpool City.  April also saw right-winger Smith score three tries in the home loss to Whitehaven (18-20) while left-winger Hollindrake topped that as he scored four times in the 26-2 home victory against Hull KR in the Eastern Division.  The following season saw Hollindrake in dazzling form as he scored three tries and kicked four goals as Bramley were shock 20-5 winners at Huddersfield in the first round of the Rugby League Challenge Cup.

Right-centre Delaney had the distinction of scoring the first Bramley hat-trick at McClaren Field as they thrashed Blackpool Borough 46-14 in the penultimate match of the 1967-68 season.  Australian-born centre Alan Smith scored the only three tries in one match during the 1968-69 season when Bramley entertained Rochdale Hornets and won by 34 points to 7.

A 17-13 Rugby League Challenge Cup victory at Dewsbury saw right-winger Goodchild get his first hat-trick for the black and ambers in the 1970-71 season and scored his second in the 18-2 home win against Whitehaven two seasons later.

Bramley’s most successful season in their long history brought with it hat-tricks for left-centre Hughes in the stunning 18-13 victory at Wakefield Trinity while scrum-half Astbury cross three time in Bramley’s biggest win of the 1973-74 season when they scored 41 points to Leighs 20 at McClaren Field.

Powerhouse left-winger Barry Parker celebrated his first season at Bramley by securing a three try haul in the 19-16 home win against York in the 1974-75 season.  The promotion season of 1976-77 resulted in four players ending the season in double figures in the try-scoring list with two players securing hat-tricks, the first by left-winger Austin in a 33-24 victory at home to Doncaster while flying left-centre Derek Parker scored his in the 42-10 thrashing of Batley.

Despite relegation, the 1977-78 season did contain highlights when Bramley-born right-winger Waites scored three tries opposite “Superstars” Salford winger Keith Fielding in a 13-21 home defeat while left-winger Billy Rowett scored a hat-trick against local rivals New Hunslet as Bramley ran out 20-4 winners at McClaren Field.

Block-busting forward Chris Bowman crashed over for the only hat-trick of the 1979-80 season in the 11-15 loss at Dewsbury while right-centre Olbison touched down three times in the 25-13 home win against Rochdale Hornets during the 1981-82 campaign.

When Bramley just missed out on promotion in season 1982-83, Bowman again scored three tries at Dewsbury although this was in a 20-15 victory and right-winger Dave Dyas notched three at Huddersfield in an impressive 22-13 win and then another three in the spectacular 42-17 victory at home to high-flying Salford.  The following season saw Dyas score hat-tricks in two consecutive matches, first at Workington and then at Dewsbury, both resulting in 20-7 victories as he became the first player in Bramley’s history to achieve successive hat-tricks.  Stand-off Carroll had scored a hat-trick earlier in the season in the 19-36 defeat at Barrow.

1984-85 brought three try hauls to stand-off Peter Lister in the 25-9 win at Mansfield while flying centre Andy Mason did the same in a 32-4 home victory versus Whitehaven.  The following campaign saw Lister smash the try-scoring record for a season when he crossed the whitewash on 34 occasions which amazingly only brought him one hat-trick, this coming in the 36-22 home win against Runcorn, five days earlier and prop-forward Bowman had smashed his way over three times in the 46-20 home romp versus Mansfield.

The first seven matches of the 1988-89 season resulted in two hat-tricks being scored for the black and ambers, first loose-forward Lister bagged three as fancied Doncaster were battered out of the Yorkshire Cup at McClaren Field 39-12 while former BARLA international winger Peter Lewis scored three long-range tries in the 22-38 home defeat to Featherstone.

As Bramley played free-flowing rugby under the coaching of Fisher and Astbury the Bramley three-quarters ran in six hat-tricks during the 1988-89 season.  Stand off Lister scoring two, first in the 32-0 whitewash at Mansfield and then during the 22-8 home win versus Batley while Gary Hobbs lodged his two in the home victories against Swinton (34-22) and in the club record win against Dewsbury (62-14), the Dewsbury match also saw Lewis get his first “three-er” of the season before topping that with four tries in the 36-2 home win against Mansfield.

After three seasons without any hat-tricks being scored, right centre Kevin Bell scored three tries in the 20-37 defeat at Swinton to end the drought during the 1992-93 season.  The following season again only saw one three-try haul for the club when stand-off Gordon Long crossed three times in the 24-48 home defeat against Keighley, this would be the last hat-trick scored by a Bramley player at McClaren Field as the only hat-trick scored in Bramley’s final season there was when Dennis Bailey created Bramley history by scoring three tries on debut when Bramley travelled to Highfield and won by 30 points to six.

Bramley’s first season playing at Clarence Field at Kirkstall brought three hat-tricks during the campaign with Damien Pickles leading the way with five tries in the club record 74-0 victory at home to Chorley.  Fan’s favourite Norman Francis crossed three times in the hard-fought 18-13 win at Highfield while Dean Blankley scored a Clarence Field trio in the 26-20 victory against visitors Barrow.  Bramley’s second and final season at Kirkstall was a disappointing one with no player being able to cross the line three times in a match.

The controversial move to Headingley in 1997 brought three hat-tricks in the season with Wayne Freeman going over for two of them, the first in a 34-14 win at Prescot Panthers and then at Headingly as Bramley defeated Batley 26-16.  The other hat-trick was scored by Mick Cook in the 40-0 away demolition of Doncaster.  David Gibbons was the only hat-trick hero of the 1998 campaign when he crossed the whitewash three times in the amazing 50-32 victory at Oldham.

What would become Bramley’s final season as a professional Rugby League club would see Mark Sibson score the final two hat-tricks for the Bramley club as he first scored three times in the 23-14 home win against  Hull KR and he followed that a week later with the final Bramley hat-trick in the 22-29 home loss to neighbours Hunslet to become only the second player to score hat-tricks in successive matches in Bramley’s long and proud history.