Hunt Rev. Kenneth Image 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1907

Hunt Rev. Kenneth Image 1 Wolverhampton Wanderers 1907


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Oxford born left half The Reverend K.R.G. (Kenneth) Hunt had previously attended Wolverhampton Grammar School and won four Blues for football at Oxford University between 1904 and 1907, and had first played for the famous amateur club The Corinthians, for whom he made his senior debut when he played in The Sheriff of London Charity Shield match against Liverpool at Craven Cottage in April 1906. Joining Second Division club Wolverhampton Wanderers as an amateur, he made his Football League debut against Burnley in March 1907. The same month he was selected by England for the first time for the match against Wales at Craven Cottage but was a non playing reserve.

The following season he was a regular in Wolves’ first eleven and played in all 7 of their FA Cup ties and scored the opening goal of their shock 3-1 FA Cup Final win over Newcastle United at The Crystal Palace. In the 40th minute, a hurried clearance from a scramble in the Newcastle penalty area fell to Hunt, who hit the ball back ferociously from distance, which Lawrence in The Magpies’ goal could only help into the net.

More glory was soon to follow as he won the Olympic Gold Medal as a member of the Great Britain Amateur team at the 1908 Olympic Games in London, playing in all 3 matches. Hunt also won 16 Amateur caps for England between December 1906, when he made his debut in a 2-1 England win over Ireland at Dalymount Park, Dublin, having played earlier in the month for The Amateurs against The Professionals in an international trial match at Hillsborough, and his final cap in November 1912, scoring once. He also played once for The Football League in a 3-1 defeat to The Scottish League in Glasgow in February 1909.

He was ordained as a Deacon in 1909, becoming one of the very few ordained ministers to play in top level sport, and also scored his only League goal for Wolves that year in a 2-1 win over Leeds City that April. Having been a reserve for the first Home International match of the season in February 1911 when once again picked for England, he finally made his international debut in a 3-0 win over Wales at The Den, Millwall in March and won a second cap the next month when he played in a 1-1 draw with Scotland at Goodison Park. He was a reserve in England squads on 3 other occasions besides the 1907 call up. Billy Meredith said of him: “I never ran up against a harder or fitter half-back. It was like running up against a brick wall when he charged you… His positioning was perfect. He seldom allowed you a yard of room in which to work. I’m glad I didn’t have to meet him very often.”

He played for Southern League club Leyton between 1908 and 1911, where he was the club’s captain from 1909, while he continued to play a handful of matches per season for Wolverhampton Wanderers, and joined Southern League Crystal Palace in February 1913 playing 16 matches in total for their first eleven. Later the same season he played for hometown amateur club Oxford City as they were beaten by South Bank in the 1913 FA Amateur Cup Final, Hunt playing for them between 1912 and 1914.

During The First World War he guested for Crystal Palace, and he continued to play for Crystal Palace after the War but also played once more in League football for Wolves against Stoke City in April 1920. In total he played 61 times for Wolves, scoring twice. Aged 36, he again played in the 1920 Olympic Games football tournament in Antwerp, when Great Britain were eliminated in the first round to Norway, while playing for The Corinthians between 1919 and his retirement in 1921. Among other teams he also played for New Crusaders in 1914. He was in later life from July 1946, the Amateur Football Association representative on the FA Council, as well as the president of The Cross-in-Hand FC and the famous amateur club Pegasus.

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