Full name Francis Peter Ryan
Born November 14, 1888, New Jersey, United States of America
Died January 5, 1954, Highfields, Leicester (aged 65 years 52 days)
Major teams Glamorgan, Hampshire, Wales
Batting style Left-hand bat
Bowling style Slow left-arm orthodox
|First-class span||1919 - 1931|
Frank Ryan was one of the most colourful and charasmatic characters ever to play for Glamorgan, and to some, he was one of the greatest extroverts ever to walk onto a cricket field. Had the left-arm spinner played in the modern age, his exploits off and on the the field, would have filled the pages of tabloid newspapers.
Ryan initially played county cricket for Hampshire in 1919 and 1920, but he gained a reputation more for his ready temper and drinking excesses, than for his left-arm spin. In 1921 Ryan went into the Lancashire Leagues, when he met with greater success as a bowler, and came to the attention of Glamorgan`s talent scouts. Even so, the maverick spinner must still have been living life to the full, as the story goes that after agreeing terms with Glamorgan for 1922 a penniless Ryan hitch-hiked his way from Lancashire to Cardiff.
Perhaps wary of not wanting to lose another county contract, Ryan initially showed more self-discipline, and established a regular place in the Glamorgan side. In 1925 he recorded career best figures of 8/41 against Derbyshire at the Arms Park, and in all games, claimed a total of 133 victims. He followed this with 106 victims in 1926, but by this time, he had become a heavy drinker once again, and the county`s hiearchy started to become irrated by the way his socialising began to affect his play.
During one away match, Ryan was found asleep under the covers, apparantly having drunk so much that he had forgotten where the team were staying. On another occasion after a match with Lancashire, he remained with friends, and carried on drinking until the early hours of the morning, before travelling by taxi from Manchester to Cardiff to rejoin the rest of the side. He apparently entered the Glamorgan dressing room saying "Ryan never lets you down", and handed over the taxi bill to the county`s Treasurer.
Had it not been for these excesses, his contemporaries believe that Ryan could have come close to winning a Test cap. But sadly, his weaknesses were also his undoing, and at the end of the 1931 season, Ryan was released as the Glamorgan officials said farewell to several professionals as a bid to save money. (Submitted by Andrew Hignell - June 2000)
Papua New Guinea's attractive team kit at the World T20 Qualifier, cool cap included, caught our attention. What's your favourite of them all?
On Sunday, Tillakaratne Dilshan became the 11th batsman to score 10,000-plus ODI runs. Here are the key numbers from his ODI career
Former Australia fast bowler Damien Fleming on bowling in thrilling World Cup semi-finals, mastering the subcontinent, and taking on Tendulkar
The failure of anyone other than Chris Rogers to cope with the conditions at Edgbaston was another worrying sign of Australian fallibility abroad
Quite a few of England's players over the years have been born outside England. Do you know where?
Since the beginning of 2012, Ian Bell averages 34.69 when batting in the top six; among regular top-order batsmen, only Shane Watson has a lower average
Death of a Gentleman exposes how neo-liberal economics threatens the game, while also hinting at worse lying beneath the surface, leaving you feeling disillusioned and angry
Should he be dropped from the one-day squad to Zimbabwe, it will be the latest chapter in the wicketkeeper's strained relations with the authorities in particular
There's currency in the idea that a captain's failure with the bat dulls his decision-making powers and creates a destructive atmosphere in the dressing room
The mauling at Lord's means once again England are being reactive in terms of who bats at one-drop. It also means they are likely to shed their new-found aggression