Peter Thomas Fenwicke
- 421Wallaby Number
Peter Fenwicke was a classic No.8 who earned his stripes through New South Wales Country rugby before he captained his country against the British Lions. Those who played alongside Fenwicke marvelled at his positional sense, cover defence and leadership. He was also a high percentage goal-kicker.
Born at Walcha in the New England region of New South Wales, Fenwicke was a truly gifted athlete during his education at The King’s School. He represented senior teams in tennis, shooting (he was the best marksman at the school), boxing (he was school champion), cricket (First XI) and rugby union (First XV). He won the honour cup for senior rugby and the goalkicking cup and captained the GPS 2nd XV.
On his return home the 17-year-old Fenwicke was made captain of the Walcha Club, a position he held for 13 seasons. After just a handful of games he was selected in the New England side to play at Country Week and was reserve for New England when they met the All Blacks in 1951. It was not until 1956 that Fenwicke first came to the attention of the Sydney press when NSW Country pushed the mighty Springboks (8-15) in Tamworth.
In 1957, incumbent No.8 ‘Mac’ Hughes pulled a thigh muscle in the interstate match and Fenwicke was called up to make his Test debut against New Zealand in Sydney. The Wallabies lost 11-25 and the selectors reacted by making five changes, four in the forwards - one of which was Fenwicke, in an effort to bolster the pack for Brisbane. Later that season he was chosen for the Fourth Wallabies tour. Fenwicke played in the opening three Tests but injured his ankle against North West Counties and missed the final two internationals.
In 1959, Fenwicke captained New South Wales to a shock 18-14 victory over the British Lions and was appointed as the 45th Wallaby to captain his country for the two Test series. He played for Country against the All Blacks in 1960, and captained Northern NSW and the Australian Barbarians against Fiji in 1961. A persistent rib injury forced him to retire in 1963.
Peter Fenwicke played six Tests for Australia, two as captain, and made an enormous contribution to country, state and national rugby.
Fenwicke won his first Test cap at No.8 in the 1st Test, 11-25 loss to New Zealand at the S.C.G.
Fenwicke started at flanker in the opening three Tests of the Fourth Wallabies tour, against Wales, Ireland and England but was then unavailable for the final two Tests due to an injured ankle.
Fenwicke captained the Wallabies from No.8 in the two Test home series against the British Lions.