Dr John Bowes
MacDougall holds the distinction of being the first player to be capped for his
country whilst playing at
In 1920, he
joined the club on being posted to the West Riding County Council as Chief
Tuberculosis officer. Formerly he had played for and captained Greenock
Wanderers and had been capped twice for
before the Great War.
, he made ten appearances for Yorkshire and won three further Scottish caps –
in 1921. In the latter match he played against William Wavell Wakefield and the
Yorkshire Post described how MacDougall was “constantly prominent” and
“played with great dash and determination.”
He played in
three Yorkshire Cup finals – twice on the winning side in 1920 and 1922, but
he was an unsuccessful captain of the 1921 side.
For a forward,
he was quite a try scorer. He touched down four times in eight games in the
1919/20 season, followed by thirteen tries (joint leading try scorer) in 17
appearances the following season and in 1921/22, he scored only five tries in
sixteen games, but this was still the joint second highest number of tries
scored that season. He also converted five tries across the three seasons.
’s coming of age fete and bazaar in 1922, which exceeded its target, achieving
a profit in advance of £860 that went towards the erection of a stand at
in June 1922 and the club started a subscription fund at 2/6 “to mark the
small token of esteem he is held in by all connected with the club.” Claude
Beaumont, the Honorary secretary, described how “His fine play in the field,
remarkable personality as a leader, and a wonderful power of organisation has
effected a change in the affairs of the club, such as a short time ago could
never have been anticipated”. Later he was made a life member of the club.
In 1947, he
became Chief of the Tuberculosis section of the World Health Organisation, based
. In 1950, MacDougall wrote to the club “From time to time I still get the
membership card and fight the good fight again”. He went on to praise the
early twenties teams and asked that the club would “pay full tribute to the
great forward line we had then and especially the earnestness with which they
carried out a systemic routine training. It may be really interesting to recall
that on more than one Saturday I was at the time the smallest and lightest man
in the pack and that any success which I personally may have achieved in the
team was due almost entirely to the tremendous team spirit we had, and to the
keenest enthusiasm of the side as a whole.”
scrum.com, he died around 1967, aged approx. 77.