The brother of St. Helens Recs forward [and England tourist] Frank Bowen, Thomas was a big raw-boned second-rower. He signed for the St. Helens club on 27th October 1926, just when they were about to embark upon one of their first sustained period of success. He made his debut in the 21-10 victory over Oldham at Knowsley Road, forming a back row with Bill Clarey and Fred Roffey. For this particular match, Ernie Shaw, the usual loose forward, played at full-back. In the St. Helens Newspaper, the famous correspondent Premier gave him a big write up: Never have I seen a local forward show such form on his first appearance in the First Team.” He went on to say: “His scrummaging was effective, his open play was sound and his destructive tackling was the best we have seen from any forward since poor Burns passed away.”
Despite such optimism, Thomas played in just 23 matches for the Saints, scoring three tries and kicking five goals. He was a regular member of the A Team too and lived at Wilson Street. After playing against York on 6th April 1931, in the middle of an Easter spell of four games in five days for the Saints, it is believed he crossed the rubicon and joined St. Helens Recreation.
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