Sunday, March 29, 2009

29 March 1884 - They Played Like Warrior-Poets

On 29 March 1884, the Scottish national team beat Wales at Caithkin Park in Glasgow by the score of 4-1 to claim the inaugural British Home Championship. John Kay scored two goals for the Scottish side, while Joseph Lindsay and Francis Shaw added one more each.

The British Home Championship was contested annually between the four national teams within the United Kingdom - England, Scotland, Wales, and Ireland (Northern Ireland after the Irish partition in 1922). The Championship used a standard table format where each of the four teams played the other three teams once, earning two points for a win, one point for a draw, and no points for a loss. The title went to the team with the highest number of points at the conclusion.

Scotland finished the 1883-84 Championship at the top of the table with maximum points. They beat Ireland away 5-0 in the first ever BHC match on 26 January 1884, then beat England 1-0 in Glasgow, before completing their title with the victory over Wales.

The British Home Championship was canceled between 1914-19 due to World War I and again during 1939-46 due to World War II. It was also canceled in 1980-81 due to the civil unrest in Northern Ireland that year. It was last played in 1984, when it was won by Northern Ireland.

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