Former Scotland rugby centre Joe McPartlin dies

Joe 'JJ' McPartlin, pictured in 1962. Picture: TSPL
Joe 'JJ' McPartlin, pictured in 1962. Picture: TSPL
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FORMER Scotland and Harlequins centre Joe ‘JJ’ McPartlin has died at the age of 75 after a long illness.

McPartlin, who captained the Oxford University XV in 1962 whilst attending St Edmund Hall college, won six caps for Scotland between 1960 and 1962, making his debut against France at Murrayfield, and appearing in the Five Nations.

Born in West Hartlepool to Glaswegian parents in June 1938, McPartlin attended Wimbledon College, undertaking National Service in the army before reading geography at Oxford.

He won three Blues whilst at Oxford in 1960, 1961 and as captain in 1962, and also played rugby for Oxford, Oxfordshire, Surrey, the Army and the Barbarians.

He turned his hand to refereeing on his retirement as a player, and took on a variety of roles in the Oxford University RFC committee from 1975, as well as teaching at St Edward’s School in Oxford.

Writing in The Scotsman, Norman Mair described McPartlin as ‘the complete centre-three-quarter; master of the half-break and the perfectly timed pass.’

McPartlin himself gained a reputation for being able to coin a phrase, once describing a conversion from Wales international John Taylor as ‘the finest since that of St Paul.’