Wonderful Wes

Wisden CricInfo staff

September 12, 2003

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All Today's Yesterdays - September 12 down the years

September 11 | September 13

1937
The first of West Indies' great postwar fast bowlers was born. With his gold chain bouncing at his throat, Wes Hall made the ball do the same to opposition batsmen. After one of the longest run-ups in Test cricket, he bowled genuinely fast - and he could do it all day, as in his marathon spell in the famous Lord's Test of 1963, when he bowled unchanged for over three hours on the last day. His partnership with Charlie Griffith on that tour was the stuff of English nightmares. Hall enjoyed the dramatic moment as much as anyone: he bowled the last over of the first tied Test, at Brisbane in 1960-61. He took 192 wickets in 48 Tests (exactly four a game), with best figures of 7 for 69 against England at 1959-60, when he was at his frightening fastest. It's still a mystery that he was never chosen as one of Wisden's Five Cricketers of the Year.

1901
Although his performance was upstaged by Gilbert Jessop's typically explosive 233, it was Charles Fry who set a record that hasn't been broken. Playing for the Rest of England against Yorkshire at Lord's, CB scored 105 ("a beautiful innings" according to the Wisden Almanack). It was his sixth consecutive first-class century, setting a record equalled only by Don Bradman in 1938-39 and Mike Procter in 1970-71. The Rest made 526 and won by an innings.

1948
If Lillee and Thomson were the tormentors-in-chief in the mid-1970s, batsmen didn't get much respite when Australia's first-change came on. Max Walker, who was born today, was known as Tangles because he bowled off the wrong foot - but no-one chuckled at his relentless support bowling. And when the terrifying twosome were injured, Tangles was an effective front-line bowler in his own right. On the Caribbean tour of 1972-73, for example, he took 26 wickets to help win the series 2-0. In the sixth Test at Melbourne in 1974-75, he took 8 for 143 in an England innings of 529. His best Test figures were also the most expensive eight-for in international history, but typical of Walker, who never said die. It was opposition batsmen who were usually in a tangle.

1925
In the season in which he passed WG Grace's total of 126 first-class hundreds, Jack Hobbs set another record right at the end. Playing for the Rest of England against the champions Yorkshire, he made 106 in the first innings. It was The Master's 16th first-class century of the season, a record until Denis Compton hit 18 in 1947.

1932
Birth of classy strokeplayer Waqar Hassan, whose only Test century was a big one: 189 against New Zealand at Lahore in 1955-56. His partnership of 308 with wicketkeeper Imtiaz Ahmed was Pakistan's first 300-run stand in Tests and is still their highest for the seventh wicket against any country. Pakistan won by four wickets. Waqar made six other Test fifties, including 97 at Calcutta in 1952-53.

1979
A partnership of 222 between Allan Border (162) and his captain Kim Hughes (100) made up the bulk of Australia's first-innings total of 390 at Madras. In his first bowl in Test cricket, slow left-armer Dilip Doshi finished with figures of 6 for 103, which set him on the way to a rare little record. He and Clarrie Grimmett are the only bowlers to take 100 Test wickets after starting their international careers when they were over 30.

Other birthdays
1924 LA (Lawrence Anderson) "Fish" Markham (South Africa)
1968 Richard Snell (South Africa)
1977 Nathan Bracken (Australia)

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