To be played for each time the two sides meet, the James Bevan Trophy will be up for grabs for the first time in the forthcoming Bundaberg Rum Rugby Series in Australia. Wales meet the Qantas Wallabies at Telstra Stadium, Sydney, on May 26th and at Brisbane's Suncorp Stadium on June 2nd.
"We are pleased to present this trophy to the two sides that have so much history between them," said Gareth Davies, Head of Australia & New Zealand, International Business Wales.
Davies, a former captain of Wales himself during the 1980s, feels that the newly created trophy will serve as a permanent reminder of the first captain in Wales's rugby history.
"Both Wales and Australia are highly passionate rugby nations and it is appropriate that the new trophy is named after a man who shared a great affinity between these two countries," said Davies.
"History also extends beyond the playing field. Our countries have long been doing business together and there are a number of great Australian success stories; companies that have chosen Wales as the ideal base from which to expand their operations globally."
WRU Chairman David Pickering said, "As a former captain of Wales myself, it is always humbling to learn about the history of rugby union and about those who have paved the way for the game's growth and development as a sport. This trophy will represent the rugby communities of Wales and Australia and will serve to help remind us all of the early days of rugby union."
James Bevan's grandson, David, who lives in Wiltshire said, "The news that there is to be a James Bevan Trophy is very exciting for us as a family. Although James only played, and captained Wales on the one occasion, against England in 1881, we feel it is a fitting tribute to him as the first ever captain of the Welsh rugby team. He was known in the family as a great character and we are very proud."
ARU President Paul McLean said the James Bevan Trophy was a fitting symbol of the long-standing affiliation between the two rugby nations.
"Australia and Wales first played Test rugby in 1908 and the James Bevan Trophy is an entirely appropriate symbol of the rugby history these two nations share," Mr McLean said.
"Both teams will want to be the first to raise the trophy and in this one hundredth year of Test rugby between Australia and Wales, the occasion will be even more special."
The James Bevan Trophy will be unveiled in Sydney, Australia on Thursday, May 24th. Guidelines for awarding the trophy will also be outlined at this time.
James Alfred Bevan (see below for link to full statistical profile)
Born Melbourne, Australia, April 15th 1858
Died Leytonstone, England, February 3rd 1938
James Bevan was born in St.Kilda, Victoria, Australia. He was the son of James Bevan and Elizabeth Fly. His father was born in Grosmont, Monmouthshire, and had emigrated to Australia in 1848. He met his wife on the voyage to Australia and the couple had three children, two daughters and a son.
James Bevan Snr purchased a Cobb & Co coach route from Melbourne to Beechworth and prospered as a result. He was able to build one of the first mansions in Melbourne, which he named 'Grosmont'.
Tragedy struck the family on January 11th 1866 when Mr and Mrs Bevan were among 251 passengers who drowned when the Melbourne-bound SS London sank in heavy seas in the Bay of Biscay.
James Bevan Jnr was only seven years old at the time and was sent with his one surviving sister to live with relatives in Wales. He was educated at Hereford Cathedral School and went up to St John's College, Cambridge on October 10th 1877.
A good all-round sportsman, he won the sprints at his college and also turned out for the St John's football XI. He could also turn his hand to cricket and, when living in Bristol having completed his Cambridge education, he claimed WG Grace and his brother EM Grace as victims while playing for Old Sneed Cricket Club.
He completed his BA in 1881 and his MA in 1891 and won rugby Blues in 1877 and 1880. He almost won the latter game with a drop goal which many claimed went over the bar, although the umpires disallowed it and the game was drawn one try each.
Bevan captained the first Welsh XV that took the field against England at Blackheath on February 19th 1881.
About International Business Wales
Formerly known as the Welsh Development Agency, International Business Wales (IBW) has helped nearly 500 international companies base their operations in Wales. IBW is Europe's most successful economic development body and has a global network of 23 offices, including one in Sydney.