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April 8, 2009
George Tribe, the Australian left-arm wrist spinner, has died aged 88. He was the 11th oldest Test cricketer and second oldest Australian.
Although his Test career was limited to three matches during the 1946-47 Ashes under Don Bradman he captured 1,378 first-class wickets in 308 matches, the majority of which were played for Northamptonshire after he moved to England in 1947.
In 13 games for Victoria, he took 86 wickets at 19.25 but, frustrated at the lack of opportunities, he moved to England and signed for Milnrow in the Central Lancashire League. In his first season in 1947 he took 136 wickets, followed by a record 148 wickets in 1948 and 150 in 1949. In 1950 he switched to Rawtenstall where he stayed for two seasons. His class was underlined when in 1949-50 he took 99 wickets (more than twice as many as any of his team-mates) at 17.22 on a tour of India with a Commonwealth team.
Tribe was an engineer during the close season and in 1951 he was hired by a Northampton-based firm. In 1952 he joined the county (he played once for them the previous summer) and in the next eight seasons he achieved the double of 1,000 runs and 100 wickets seven times.
He still holds the record for the most wickets in a season for Northamptonshire - 175 in 1955 - and the best figures of 15 for 31 against Yorkshire, at Wantage Road, in 1958.
A talented sportsman, Tribe also played Australian rules football for Footscray in the Victorian Football League.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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