November 10, 2009

New Zealand cricket

The oldest player in the world

George Binoy

For the last five years Eric Tindill, a double international for New Zealand at Test level in cricket and rugby, has been cricket’s oldest living Test player. And two days ago, Tindill went past England’s Frank MacKinnon, who lived 98 years and 324 days, to become the oldest Test cricketer ever.

A left-hand opening batsman and wicketkeeper, Tindill toured England with Curly Page's team in 1937. On the way home he had the distinction of catching Don Bradman off Jack Cowie's bowling – the only time Bradman played against a New Zealand side. The match, between New Zealand and South Australia, was played in Adelaide to help cover debts incurred in England. Cowie and Tindill were delighted with their prized wicket, but others reckoned they cost New Zealand Cricket a fortune. Bradman was dismissed for 11 in the opening over on a Saturday morning and thousands of spectators, queuing for entry, simply turned around and left. Tindill also umpired in Tests and was a Wellington and New Zealand selector.

Tindill was also an international rugby referee and is currently the oldest living All Black.


George Binoy is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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