Born: 21 January, 1876 – Dunedin
Died: 3 July, 1930 – Wellington
Test record: 8 Tests (1908) – 1 try (3 points)
Tours: 1907-08 tour of Australia and Great Britain

Thomas ‘Angry’ Cross was among the clutch of All Blacks representatives to join the trailblazing ‘All Golds’ tour of Australia and Great Britain in 1907 and featured in New Zealand’s first eight rugby league Test matches.

The physically imposing Dunedin product represented Otago, Canterbury and Wellington in rugby union, as well as both the North and South Islands. He first played for New Zealand against NSW in 1901 while at Christchurch club Linwood, while he turned out in two Tests – against British Isles in 1904 and Australia in 1905 – from Petone in Wellington.

But Cross was overlooked for the famed 1905-06 ‘Originals’ tour of Britain and France, while a season-ending suspension after being sent off in a club match made the aggressive forward’s decision to set off with the ‘professional All Blacks’ in 1907 in a squad that contained five Petone teammates.

Cross played all three of the All Golds’ historic matches against NSW enroute to England – scoring a try in the first – and was one of the touring party’s ironmen, playing a staggering 42 of 49 matches. He was an integral part of New Zealand’s forward pack in its inaugural Test against Wales and all four Tests against England and Great Britain.

He had the dubious distinction of being the first player sent off in a Test in the fourth match against England in Cheltenham, marched for punching. Despite being 5-0 down at the time, the All Golds went on to record a series-levelling 8-5 victory, while Cross was later suspended for one week.

Cross also played in all three Tests against Australia during the return leg of the auspicious tour. The 32-year-old scored a try in the series-sealing second-Test victory in Brisbane.

Retiring at the end of 1909 after representing Wellington in matches against Taranaki and Auckland, Cross passed away in 1930, aged 54. Like legendary teammate and tour organiser Albert Baskerville and four other All Golds, Cross is buried at Karori Cemetery.