Cyril Washbrook - 1914-1999 (1 May 1999)

1 May 1999

Cyril Washbrook - 1914-1999


The death of popular Lancashire and England opening batsman Cyril Washbrook was announced yesterday. Washbrook, who was 84, died at his home near Manchester on Tuesday. He played 37 Tests for England in a career that eventually spanned nineteen years.

David Liverman presents this tribute.

In the course of a long professional career Cyril Washbrook amassed over 34,000 runs and 71 centuries, mostly as an opening bat for his native Lancashire and England. Stocky and powerfully built, with strong shoulders, he was particularly severe on anything short, cutting and hooking with great force. A very sound defence gave him the technique to deal with the swinging and seaming new ball, and he sold his wicket dearly. He was a fine cover point, particularly in his younger days.

He debuted for Lanashire in 1933, and made an immediate impression, becoming the youngest Lancastrian (at 19) to score a first-class century with 152 in his second match. He first played for England in 1936-37 against New Zealand, but failed to establish himself in a strong batting side. He lost what might have been his best years to the Second World War, as directly afterwards he soon became established as one of the best bats in England.

His name is often linked with Len Hutton, as they formed a successful opening partnership for England. They made three successive opening century partnerships against Australia in 1946/47, and Washbrook averaged over 50 in Tests against the great 1948 Australian side. In 1948/49 he and Hutton put on 359 for the first wicket against South Africa, still the English Test record.

He was Lancashire's first professional captain, taking over the post in 1954 until his retirement. He was a Test selector from 1956-57 and again from 1971-72. in 1956, he was put in the unusual position of being recalled by his fellow selectors at the age of 42 to face the Australians. He came into to bat with England 17/3. In a superb performance he made 98. His final Test innings (in that series) was a duck, but he played three more years for Lancashire before retiring.

A popular player his benefit match in 1948 set a receipt record that was not beaten for years. He became president of Lancashire in 1989/90.

Cyril Washbrook career statistics:

TESTS                 M    I    NO  Runs   HS     Ave 100  50   Ct St
Batting              37   66     6  2569  195   42.81   6  12   12  -

O M R W Ave Best 5 10 SR Econ Bowling 6 0 33 1 33.00 1-25 - - 36.0 5.50

FIRST-CLASS Batting M I NO Runs HS Ave 100 All first-class 591 906 107 34101 251* 42.68 76 Lancashire 500 756 95 27863 251* 42.15 58

Bowling All first-class: 7 wickets for 309, average 44.14, best 2/8 Lancashire: 4 wickets for 268, average 67.00, best 1/4

Source :: CricInfo365