He coached and captained Llanelli, often played in the front row alongside his brother, Byron, and later saw his son, Sean, play for Wales at age grade level and for Llanelli.
His Wales cap sold for £800, while one of his match-worn Welsh jerseys went for £900. The shirt he wore for Llanelli against New Zealand in 1963 earned £650, while his Western Counties XV shirt worn against Fiji in 1964 went for a more modest £180.
But the big earners were the shirts swapped with a number of his opponents. An Irish jersey worn by full back Tom Kiernan, who went on to captain both his country and the 1968 British & Irish Lions, in Gale’s debut match in Dublin in 1960 fetched £800, while the French shirt of flanker Andre Herrero from the 1964 clash with Wales made £1,200.
There was an Argentine jersey from the Wales tour in 1968 (£600), Brian Keen’s England shirt from 1968 (£360) and a Scottish jersey worn by hooker Norman Bruce in 1963 (£420) and an Aussie shirt from Wales’ win down under in 1969 (£500).
But the biggest prices came for Bruce McLeod’s 1969 All Blacks shirt from the Wales tour to New Zealand. That made £1,800, while the price went even higher for Springbok Abe Malan’s shirt from the 1964 clash with Wales in Durban.
Malan’s son paid £3,600 to restore the shirt to the family collection in South Africa. In doing so he pushed the return to the Gale family into five figures.
Also in the auction, Billy Williams’ Wales & England jersey from the combined game against Scotland & Ireland in Dublin in 1955 went for £1,200. Jack Wetter’s 1924 shirt from the game against New Zealand, listed at between £3-3,500, remained unsold.