Accession M 1750: Jules Guerassimoff Cutting Books

This interesting accession contains two large scrapbooks with press cuttings and photographs about Jules Guerassimoff's rugby career with the Wallabies, including newspaper articles about tours to South Africa (1963), New Zealand (1964), England, France and Canada (1966-1967).

Guerassimoff was born in Thangoll, central Queensland, on 28 June 1940. His grandparents were Russians who left Siberia in the late 1920s with false papers, reaching Australia after travelling through Japan, Canada and China.

Jules Guerassimoff played interstate rugby during the 1960s and international rugby with the Wallabies in the 1960s and 1970s. His Wallaby number was 490 and his position flanker. He played 12 tests for the Wallabies.

Interestingly, most players received no pay during the tour to South Africa: ‘Most of the Wallabies have made a big financial sacrifice to come on the present tour. Only three of them are receiving full pay from their employers during an absence of more than three months, some are on half pay and a number of others, including two schoolteachers and 12 students, will be heavily out of pocket. (by A. C. Parker)

In one of the newpspaper articles in this accession, entitled ‘Jules changed mind’, we learn that Guerassimoff had no particular interest in playing rugby union (he played rugby league at school), until he won a State reserve jersey against France at the end of the 1961 season. That year, aged 22, he was included in the Queensland team going on a tour to New Zealand: ‘After four tough matches on that tour he was ready to face the Australian selectors in a tough series of trials in Sydney.’

After Australia defeated South Africa in the Second test (9-5), Guerassimoff’s teammate Greg Davis said: ‘I could not have played nearly as well without Jules. He was tremendous. I knew that if I went for a man or the ball and missed, Jules would be there to succeed.’

References:

“2013 CLASSIC WALLABIES STATESMEN BIOS”, accessed on 10 November, 2014,

http://www.rugby.com.au/Portals/16/Images/Classics/2013%20CLASSIC%20WALLABIES%20STATESMEN%20BIOS.pdf,

Veronika Farley, Archivist, Queensland Memory, State Library of Queensland

 

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