They Shall Not Pass
At the end of the 19th century, Gloucester played 4 seasons, 1896-1900, under the captaincy of W H Taylor. These seasons were notable for the strength of the Gloucester defence, and the number of clean sheets achieved – 132 matches were played, and in 70 of them the opposition failed to register a point (53% of games played). Gloucester registered 1292 points whilst giving up a miserly 477 to their opponents.
At the start of the 1997-8 season, the first 8 matches were played without the opposition scoring. Clifton then scored a try, but were defeated 13-3. There followed a further 5 matches in which Gloucester kept a clean sheet, making it 12 out of 13.
In 1900-01, George Romans took over as captain, and the defence remained solid – 19 clean sheets out of 34 matches played during the season, and between December 8th 1900 and 19 January 1901, 8 matches were played without a point being conceded.