Harold de Andrado dies
Harold de Andrado, versatile cricket writer, die-hard Josephian and stalwart of NCC, died of a heart attack at a private hospital on Saturday night. Born on December 30, 1927, he was educated at St Joseph's College, Colombo and represented the school at cricket from the age of 11 and played in all age group teams, though more often than not, as 12th man in the first XI.
His loyalties to his alma mater knew no bounds and he was credited as being the oldest custodian of school cricket history in Sri Lanka. Harold and Josephian cricket are synonymous. No cricket tie between the two Catholic schools St Joseph's and St Peter's took place without Harold being in the limelight. For his contribution to this time-honoured series Harold was invited to be the chief guest of the 70th 'Battle of the Saints' cricket encounter played at the Saravanamuttu Stadium last year.
Despite his failing health Harold still kept in touch with his close associates and friends. He began his long association with NCC as a schoolboy in 1946 and at the time of his death was the longest-serving member of the club. He was vice-patron to another great NCC stalwart Vernon Prins. But after Prins' death he was elevated as patron.
Harold represented NCC in the Donovan Andree Trophy and Daily News Trophy tournaments and was a tower of strength to the club in all their activities being one-time vice president, secretary and cricket secretary.
As a mark of respect to this loyal club member the NCC cricketers observed two minutes silence on the third morning of their Premier trophy match against Kurunegala YCC at the Welagedera Stadium yesterday. Harold's versatility spread to the newspapers where he excelled as a cricket writer of repute. He began as a freelance journalist with the Daily News and the Observer in the fifties. In later years he contributed to the Daily Mirror and The Island newspapers.
Harold also covered Test matches played in India, Australia and England and contributed articles on the sport to Australian and English newspapers and was also correspondent to The Cricketer International for several years. His love for Australia as a cricket nation was symbolised by the close friendship he cultivated with players of the calibre of Sir Donald Bradman, Keith Miller, Arthur Morris, Graham McKenzie and the Chappell brothers Ian and Greg. He was also in touch with cricketing greats from West Indies and India.
Harold never failed to pay glowing tributes to his college mates and heroes who had gone before him. His versatility as a cricket writer can be gauged by the numerous letters he received.