D: Davies - Davies
Bearded Ken Davies (Maesteg)
Born on 31st December, 1915 James Kenneth McTiffin was to become a professional rugby player and then heavyweight wrestler Bearded Ken Davies.
The black beard, said to have been grown whilst serving in the navy during World war two became a trademark of the Maesteg wrestler. For Ken Davies it was his pursuance of a rugby career that led him to move from his Welsh home town Aberavon.
In the summer of 1935 Ken was signed up by fledgling London Rugby League Club Streatham and Mitcham. Whether or not he actually played for the team seems unlikely as their first game was on 7th September, 1935, and the previous month he had joined Dewsbury. By the autumn the McTiffin family were living in Dewsbury, Yorkshire. In August, 1938, he signed for Wakefield Trinity, and played for them until 1940 when he joined the navy.
We discover the name Ken Davies on wrestling bills from 1944 onwards. Ken was a big, rugged wrestler who competed with the top heavyweights like Assirati and Armstrong. Like so many others wrestling seemed to be part of Davies’ genetic make-up that was passed to family members as he fathered another Welsh Heavyweight, Gwyn Davies.
We last found the name Ken Davies on the posters of 1959 but his career continued into the early 1960s as the masked man, The Legionnaire.
Not to be confused wlth Killer Ken Davies, the welsh welterweight. Only the names are the same.
Ken Davies died in 1978.
Killer Ken Davies (Tredegar)
In the 1960s and 1970s a bald headed, mean looking welterweight more than slightly annoyed fans in the midlands and Wales. He was Killer Ken Davies, and apart from the name there was little similarity with the heavyweight of the same name. This Killer Ken, billed from Tredegar, was a long time Welsh welterweight champion and a 1962 win over Cheshire’s Ken Else grabbed for him the independent promoters British welterweight crown. He was introduced to wrestling whilst working down the coal mines where he met another Welsh wrestler, John Paul. Turning professional in 1959 it was the beginning of a successful career in which he gained the respect of colleagues and is still spoken of as a hard man to beat. Al Tarzo worked with Ken, "Ken was a guy that could get the crowd wound up in a big way, I remember a show at Tamworth when he had the crowd crying for his blood. When he came back to the dressing room his back was covered with his own blood. A woman in the front row got to the ringside and attacked him with her shoe. He had holes in his back from her stiletto heels to prove it." It is one of wrestling's mysteries why Killer Ken worked only for the opposition promoters and was never attracted to Joint Promotions. Maybe someone out there can tell us.
The muscular young middleweight from Rotherham started out around 1959 and was around the rings quite a bit until the late sixties. Opponents included Leon Fortuna, Linde Caulder, Jon Cortez, Jim Breaks and both of the St Clair boys.
Page revised 01/08/2019: Roy Bull Davis moved to his own page, Eric Day transferred to his own page, Eric Deakin transferred to D: Deakin