BATSMAN OF THE YEAR - 1890

Maurice Read

Maurice Read, who was born at Thames Ditton, on Feb. 9, 1859, and therefore belongs by birth to the only county for which he has ever played, does not need a very lengthy introduction to our readers. From the day of his first appearance in the Surrey eleven in 1880, down to the present time, he has played a prominent part in county and other first-class cricket, and he was never been in better form than during the first half of the season of 1889. Unfortunately, at the very height of the summer, when he was batting more consistently than at any previous part of his career, he had the misfortune to severely injure one of his fingers in making a catch in the Surrey and Yorkshire match at Sheffield. This accident prevented him from appearing for the Players, either at the Oval or Lord's, and another injury kept him out of the most important match of the Oval programme-the return with Notts on the Bank Holiday. Despite all these disadvantages, however, he left off for the year with a very fine record. Maurice Read visited Australia as a member of Shaw and Shrewsbury's team in the winter of 1884-85; again under the auspices of Shaw and Shrewsbury in the winter of 1886-87, and for the third time in 1887-88. For the first tour he had a batting average in eleven-a-side matches of 16.2; in the second tour a batting average curiously enough of exactly the same value-16.2-in eleven-a-side matches, and 25.19 in all matches. On the third visit his average was 16.10 in eleven-a-side matches, and 23.2 for all engagements. On the whole, therefore, it cannot be said that on Colonial grounds he has come up to his English reputation. Of his doings for Surrey, however, since he first appeared for the eleven a column could easily be written. Maurice Read does not belong to the strictly orthodox school of batsmen, but plays a game of his own, and plays it well, hitting brilliantly on all sorts of wickets. His fast bowling is occasionally effective as a change, and as an outfield he certainly ranks among the English players who come nearest to William Gunn, being a very fast runner, and having a sure pair of hands.

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