February 24, 2014

The tradesmen

A Barber, a Cook, an Engineer and other cricketers whose names are also professions
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Merchant
It was a close-run thing for one of the opening spots in this team, but the prolific opener Vijay Merchant beat off the challenge of his compatriot Nari Contractor, on weight of runs - and by virtue of a first-class batting average of 71.64, bettered only by Don Bradman.

Cook
England's captain Alastair Cook gets the nod at the top of the order despite his recent problems in Australia. He still reached 8000 Test runs at a younger age than anyone else and, rather scarily, is still only 29.

Butcher
Test cricket's most-capped Butcher is Mark of England, with 71: his family has 72 caps when father Alan's solitary one from 1979 is added in. But Basil Butcher, a stalwart of the strong West Indian side of the 1960s, had a better batting average - 43.11 to Mark's 34.58.

Nurse
Another representative from that exciting West Indian side, the big Barbadian Seymour Nurse could murder the bowling - as he did most efficiently in what turned out to be his final Test innings, 258 against New Zealand in Christchurch in 1968-69.

Barber
A hard-hitting left-hander best remembered for a pulsating 185 in an Ashes Test in Sydney in 1965-66, Bob Barber will also bolster our attack with his legbreaks, which brought him 42 wickets from his 28 Tests.

Miller
There was only one choice for our jobbing allrounder - the charismatic Australian Keith Miller, darling of the crowds (and the ladies) in the decade or so after the Second World War. Miller was arguably the last true Australian allrounder - one who could have been selected either for his batting or his bowling.

Engineer
Not too much discussion about our wicketkeeper: the livewire Indian Farokh Engineer, a favourite from Manchester to Mumbai, was good enough to open the batting in Tests - and score a rapid hundred against West Indies in Madras (now Chennai) in 1966-67.

Bishop
Opening the bowling for our tradesmen will be Ian Bishop, one of the frighteningly quick bunch of West Indian pacemen in the early 1990s. He took 161 Test wickets, at only 24 apiece. He could also help out in the commentary box afterwards.

Pope
There's a case for including the New Zealand slow left-armer Mark Priest if the wicket is taking spin, but we have picked from the top of the Ecclesiastical batting order here, by selecting Derbyshire's George Pope, a long-serving seamer who won a Test cap against South Africa in 1947.

Ironmonger
Unorthodox spin is provided by Bert "Dainty" Ironmonger, who had eye-popping Test stats considering he was 46 before he made his debut, and nearly 51 when he said his farewells after the 1932-33 Bodyline series. Ironmonger, who spun the ball off the remains of fingers mangled in a farming accident, took 74 Test wickets at 17.97, including 11 for 24 on a Melbourne "sticky dog" against South Africa in 1931-32.

Baker
Seamer Lionel Baker, the only Test cricketer from the tiny Caribbean island of Montserrat, gets our final place - although I did have the tall Surrey fast bowler Ray Baker more in mind at first. During a televised Sunday League game in the early 1970s, when he played alongside Alan Butcher, he inspired the commentator John Arlott to observe that Surrey had "a Butcher, a Baker... but no sign of a Candlestick-Maker".

Umpires
This team even brings its own officials along: the Indian umpire Piloo Reporter and England's favourite, David Shepherd. And opener Cook could perhaps lend a hand with the teas.

Steven Lynch is the editor of the Wisden Guide to International Cricket 2013

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • POSTED BY philvic on | February 25, 2014, 17:19 GMT

    We need a gastronomical 11

    Cook, Cook, Baker, Butcher, Rice, Kourie, Le Roux, Shepherd (pie), Appleyard, Foster(s), Beet

  • POSTED BY Nutcutlet on | February 25, 2014, 12:25 GMT

    And, although not a trade, per se, Constable to keep the rest in line! (There have been, I've found out, four Constables, but the one I was thinking about was Bernard C - a regular member of the all-conquering Surrey team of the 1950s - a great character & crowd favourite).

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 11:18 GMT

    Bond, Shane Bond. Need I say more?

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 8:29 GMT

    Some more names: (Mike) Procter, (Sylvester, Michael, and others) Clark(e), (John Barton and Collis) King, (Ashwell) Prince, (Mark) Priest, (Geoff) Millman

  • POSTED BY cjb1 on | February 25, 2014, 6:14 GMT

    No room for any Smith? Or Malcolm Marshall? Assumedly the coach would be Duncan Fletcher. Clarke is derived from the professions of clerk and cleric (from the Latin Clericus) and a Bond was a peasant famer, a Hooper made the rings around a barrel, a Harper was a minstrel, a Reeve a constable, a Slater a roofer, and a Dexter a cloth dyer - so Michael, Shane, Carl, Roger, Dermott, Michael and Lord Ted can feel unlucky not to get a run. If we pick an ODI side you may want to also include James Faulkner (a falconer)

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 6:12 GMT

    Katey, I think one of the Cricinfo XI features was a team comprising Smiths.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 6:05 GMT

    How about Michael Mason, the former New Zealand fast bowler? Speaking of bowlers, there was, in fact, a Peter Bowler on the county circuit.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 4:26 GMT

    To add to those missed out, Cartwright, an English quick

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 2:20 GMT

    I believe Sachin Tendulkar legally changed his name to Sachin Barrister especially to be included in this article.

  • POSTED BY Insult_2_Injury on | February 25, 2014, 2:12 GMT

    Shame this side is restricted to tradesmen and doesn't have other professions, as the bowling would benefit from Malcolm Marshall.

  • POSTED BY philvic on | February 25, 2014, 17:19 GMT

    We need a gastronomical 11

    Cook, Cook, Baker, Butcher, Rice, Kourie, Le Roux, Shepherd (pie), Appleyard, Foster(s), Beet

  • POSTED BY Nutcutlet on | February 25, 2014, 12:25 GMT

    And, although not a trade, per se, Constable to keep the rest in line! (There have been, I've found out, four Constables, but the one I was thinking about was Bernard C - a regular member of the all-conquering Surrey team of the 1950s - a great character & crowd favourite).

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 11:18 GMT

    Bond, Shane Bond. Need I say more?

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 8:29 GMT

    Some more names: (Mike) Procter, (Sylvester, Michael, and others) Clark(e), (John Barton and Collis) King, (Ashwell) Prince, (Mark) Priest, (Geoff) Millman

  • POSTED BY cjb1 on | February 25, 2014, 6:14 GMT

    No room for any Smith? Or Malcolm Marshall? Assumedly the coach would be Duncan Fletcher. Clarke is derived from the professions of clerk and cleric (from the Latin Clericus) and a Bond was a peasant famer, a Hooper made the rings around a barrel, a Harper was a minstrel, a Reeve a constable, a Slater a roofer, and a Dexter a cloth dyer - so Michael, Shane, Carl, Roger, Dermott, Michael and Lord Ted can feel unlucky not to get a run. If we pick an ODI side you may want to also include James Faulkner (a falconer)

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 6:12 GMT

    Katey, I think one of the Cricinfo XI features was a team comprising Smiths.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 6:05 GMT

    How about Michael Mason, the former New Zealand fast bowler? Speaking of bowlers, there was, in fact, a Peter Bowler on the county circuit.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 4:26 GMT

    To add to those missed out, Cartwright, an English quick

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 2:20 GMT

    I believe Sachin Tendulkar legally changed his name to Sachin Barrister especially to be included in this article.

  • POSTED BY Insult_2_Injury on | February 25, 2014, 2:12 GMT

    Shame this side is restricted to tradesmen and doesn't have other professions, as the bowling would benefit from Malcolm Marshall.

  • POSTED BY klownact on | February 25, 2014, 1:15 GMT

    Bransby Cooper played in the very test of all.

  • POSTED BY on | February 25, 2014, 0:35 GMT

    I think the Marshall´s gonna be gunnin for you after leaving him out.

  • POSTED BY Underbelly83 on | February 24, 2014, 23:09 GMT

    Piloo Reporter - oh I do remember him. He was hilarious when signalling a four. His arm action was hyper-aggressive like he was trying to bat away a wasp.

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 22:51 GMT

    Smith is a stunning omission, if only because it's so obvious. Almost as obvious is Clarke (and Clark), which is just a variant spelling of clerk. But there are also (CTB) Turner, (Ross or Mark) Taylor and Max Walker as candidates. A few less obvious choices: Barnes (apparently, one of the derivations was somebody who worked in a barn), Faulkner (falconer), Procter, and Boucher (butcher).

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 22:42 GMT

    I followed Farokh Engineer in the 70tis ,,,I liked his style of play ,,,however he wanted to Captain Indian while Pataudi was Injured in the 74 75 West Indies series ...Its was one of the best Series Both teans were 2 and 2 Final at wankhede I was 14 Some how I got in with no tickets ,,,It was the firt time the match was televised from Wankhede,,, Farokh dropped Clive Lyod Catch and Clive went on to make 242 ,,,,Farokh left india retired went back to England ,,,, I still remember those days ,,,

  • POSTED BY 12thUmpire on | February 24, 2014, 21:33 GMT

    King? Prince? Subcontinental name Khan? Welsh names Giles? Jones? Appreciate comments / debate. ty

  • POSTED BY android_user on | February 24, 2014, 20:20 GMT

    nice one really. never thought like that. but good article

  • POSTED BY Rajdev on | February 24, 2014, 19:25 GMT

    @vkrp: Taylor isn't Tailor, although pronounced the same way. What about Bertie Ironmonger (altho the irongmonger is not a little obsolete). Rajan

  • POSTED BY Bobby_Talyarkhan on | February 24, 2014, 18:49 GMT

    Merchant, Contractor and Engineer were all Parsis - many of whom in India tended to have names based on the equivalent English word for their professions.

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 18:33 GMT

    Nari Contractor? How did you writers miss the most famous one!

  • POSTED BY Dagur on | February 24, 2014, 17:39 GMT

    Cooks, Smiths and Tailors could form a formidable team. How about Dickie Bird for Umpire ??

  • POSTED BY vrkp on | February 24, 2014, 17:01 GMT

    Taylor in the middle order would have helped stitching some big partnerships :)

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 15:21 GMT

    Does anybody remember Shaukat Dokanwala (Shopkeeper) of UAE?

  • POSTED BY philvic on | February 24, 2014, 15:13 GMT

    If you had Jimmy and Alastair believe me you would give the tea to Alastair and the bat to Jimmy.

  • POSTED BY Katey on | February 24, 2014, 14:49 GMT

    This is too easy! How about building a whole team out of Smiths?

  • POSTED BY sjw2k on | February 24, 2014, 14:49 GMT

    Perhaps Ian Butler or Jos Buttler to carry the drinks?

  • POSTED BY Engle on | February 24, 2014, 14:16 GMT

    How did Baker get in ahead of Alderman ? Procter would make a fine candidate for Match Referee Jimmy Cook could do tea, why burden Alistair

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 12:51 GMT

    Glenn Turner surely

    Duncan Fletcher as coach, or John Wright?

    And how you have omitted Lancashire's Ryan Driver is beyond me!

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 12:46 GMT

    No "Smith"s in the team? (25 characters)

  • POSTED BY londondoc on | February 24, 2014, 12:45 GMT

    Good one. How about (Ross) Taylor or (Craig) Sergeant !

  • POSTED BY Matt_in_London on | February 24, 2014, 12:22 GMT

    What about Ross Taylor - he could be good in the middle order but also help mend any torn whites.

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 12:16 GMT

    and 'tailor'?????????Mark,Ross,Jerome,Brendon quite a few!!!!

  • POSTED BY usama46 on | February 24, 2014, 12:12 GMT

    i remember the name of one player from UAE The name is shokat dukanwala(shop keeper) played in 1996 world cup..

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 12:11 GMT

    how about 'musical instruments'......Ian 'Bell',Chris 'Drum',Matthew Horne',???

  • POSTED BY its.rachit on | February 24, 2014, 12:06 GMT

    malcolm marshall shud definitely had been there ... an attack of marshall, ironmonger, miller and bishop looks pretty awesome ... the batting also looks good ...

  • POSTED BY DrTchock on | February 24, 2014, 11:43 GMT

    I think I can trump the Pope in your ecclesiastical lineup too................with Western Australia and Australia's Jo Angel! There are numerous Clark(e)s also, in case Micky Arthur needed someone to write up the team homework. Nick Knight would be useful in a scrap and could return cricket to a more chivalrous age. Reon King and Ashwell Prince surely have full time occupataions?! And if you wanted someone to truly 'lead the line', then Charles could be your Bannerman. A man born to field in the slips would be Trevor Gripper(!) but the person I want on my team above all else? Simple - Travis Friend, surely the best occupation of them all. :)

  • POSTED BY IndianInnerEdge on | February 24, 2014, 11:17 GMT

    Malc Marshall? the steyn-gun?

  • POSTED BY DrTchock on | February 24, 2014, 11:12 GMT

    Bodyline legend, Eddie Paynter could once again rise from his sick bed (with the help of middle order colleague, Nurse perhaps?!) to plunder runs for this side........

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 10:16 GMT

    What about Pragyan Ojha....Lolz

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 9:56 GMT

    I think that the bowling stocks are quite limited, I would have thought adding a few town officials, namely Terry Alderman and Malcolm Marshall would have made the world of difference!

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 9:40 GMT

    Wonder how Marshall (Malcolm) didn't make the cut.

  • POSTED BY Trufflehund on | February 24, 2014, 8:04 GMT

    How about Turner (various) , Farmer and Ostler (not particularly famous) and Fletcher (worth considering for the team)

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 7:16 GMT

    nari contractor ex india captain

  • POSTED BY Markdal on | February 24, 2014, 6:37 GMT

    Perhaps Jesse Ryder, although I don't think I'd like to see him on a horse!

  • POSTED BY Rowayton on | February 24, 2014, 5:36 GMT

    sorry, can't resist - I see you didn't consider former Australian fast bowler Des Hoare.

  • POSTED BY JohnDLynch on | February 24, 2014, 5:01 GMT

    On the clerical side, we have Prior and Abbott. For other professions, there is Smith (numerous), Wright (quite a few), and, with spelling variations, Buttler and Faulkner)

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 4:41 GMT

    Some other names, not in batting order: (Ghulam) Guard, (Shamji) Dhobi, Marshall, Loader, Smith, Archer, Driver, (Dinshaw) Doctor,

  • POSTED BY Zahidsaltin on | February 24, 2014, 4:36 GMT

    Robert Pearson Carpenter could be the 12th man. A decent allrounder who toured Australia and stood in two tests as 12th man. A case for a debut.

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 4:00 GMT

    TAYLOR of which a # exist.

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  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 4:00 GMT

    TAYLOR of which a # exist.

  • POSTED BY Zahidsaltin on | February 24, 2014, 4:36 GMT

    Robert Pearson Carpenter could be the 12th man. A decent allrounder who toured Australia and stood in two tests as 12th man. A case for a debut.

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 4:41 GMT

    Some other names, not in batting order: (Ghulam) Guard, (Shamji) Dhobi, Marshall, Loader, Smith, Archer, Driver, (Dinshaw) Doctor,

  • POSTED BY JohnDLynch on | February 24, 2014, 5:01 GMT

    On the clerical side, we have Prior and Abbott. For other professions, there is Smith (numerous), Wright (quite a few), and, with spelling variations, Buttler and Faulkner)

  • POSTED BY Rowayton on | February 24, 2014, 5:36 GMT

    sorry, can't resist - I see you didn't consider former Australian fast bowler Des Hoare.

  • POSTED BY Markdal on | February 24, 2014, 6:37 GMT

    Perhaps Jesse Ryder, although I don't think I'd like to see him on a horse!

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 7:16 GMT

    nari contractor ex india captain

  • POSTED BY Trufflehund on | February 24, 2014, 8:04 GMT

    How about Turner (various) , Farmer and Ostler (not particularly famous) and Fletcher (worth considering for the team)

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 9:40 GMT

    Wonder how Marshall (Malcolm) didn't make the cut.

  • POSTED BY on | February 24, 2014, 9:56 GMT

    I think that the bowling stocks are quite limited, I would have thought adding a few town officials, namely Terry Alderman and Malcolm Marshall would have made the world of difference!