ACHONG, ELLIS EDGAR ( PUSS), died in Port-of-Spain, Trinidad, on August 29, 1986, aged 82. A left-arm spin bowler, he was the first cricketer of Chinese extraction to play Test cricket, appearing for West Indies in six matches against England and taking eight wickets at 47.25. Chosen to tour England in 1933, he played in all three Tests but with limited success, and in all first-class matches that season took 71 wickets. Essentially an orthodox slow left-armer, at Manchester he had Robins stumped by a ball which,--bowled with a wrist-spinner's action, turned into the right-hander from the off and gave rise to the use in England of the word chinaman to describe such a delivery. After 1935 he played in the Lancashire leagues until 1951, and having returned to live in Trinidad he stood as an umpire in the 1953-54 Port-of-Spain Test between West Indies and England. In all first-class matches he took 110 wickets at 30.23, his best figures being seven for 73 for Trinidad against British Guiana in 1932-33.
AIRD, RONALD, MC, died at his home at Yapton on August 16, 1986, aged 84. Until he was over 80 he had been a very fit man, playing golf regularly and constant in his attendance at race meetings, but in the last two or three years his health had failed, his activities had been sadly restricted, and it was clear to his friends that one who had always been so full of life had now ceased to enjoy it.
Good cricketer though he was, Ronny Aird will always be chiefly remembered for his work at Lord's, which covered first to last 60 years. Appointed Assistant Secretary in 1926 when W. Findlay was promoted to Secretary, he continued to serve under Col. Rait Kerr and himself succeeded as Secretary in 1952. He retired in 1962, but was President in 1968-69 and a Trustee from 1971 to 1983, when he became a Life Vice-President, remaining active on the committee almost to the end. I can remember Lord Cornwallis, who as an ex-President and a Trustee was in a position to know, saying of him as far back as 1950, when he was still only Assistant Secretary. No-one realises how much that man has done for Lord's.
It was never Aird's way to seek the limelight. His name seldom appeared in the press. He was not responsible for any startling reforms or innovations. But as one of the papers said after his death, Lord's was never a happier place than during his secretaryship. There was an aura of happiness and it was a joy just to be there, whatever the occasion: all the staff in the pavilion, the tennis-court or elsewhere greeted one as an old friend. This atmosphere was typical of Aird himself and his greatness lay rather in what he was than in what he did. One could not imagine him ever being involved in rows or unpleasantness. He was completely imperturbable. Whatever happened, he remained his own smiling, courteous self. Not that he could not be firm enough when occasion demanded it. This was well shown in his chairmanship, which evoked widespread admiration, of the highly contentious special meeting in 1968 on relations with South Africa.
S. C. Griffith, who was Assistant Secretary under him before succeeding him as Secretary, writes: He was the best man to work for that a man ever had; a wonderful person and a very true friend. He was a kind man and a tremendous lover of his fellow human-beings. I was very proud to work for him.
No less notable on a smaller scale was his work for I Zingari, of which he was an officer for more than 50 years, being successively Secretary and Treasurer. He played an important part in raising the club from the low esteem in which it was held in the 1920s and making it again one to which people are proud to belong and for which they enjoy playing. No-one has better deserved the honour bestowed on him a few years ago when he was appointed a Freeman of the club. In his later days, his wisdom and experience were of the greatest value, too, to the Friends of Arundel Castle Cricket in their formative years.
He got his coluors at Eton in 1919, when he made 60, top score, against Winchester and was also the team's wicket-keeper. In 1920 he was replaced behind the wicket by M. Ll. Hill, who afterwards kept for Somerset, but he made 49 against Winchester and 44 not out at Lord's and was described as perhaps the soundest batsman on the side. In 1921, when he headed the averages, he played a memorable innings of 112 not out, which enabled Eton to win after J. L. Guise had scored 278 for Winchester.
Like many another good strokeplayer, he took some time to acclimatise himself to first-class cricket. Though he had a trial for Hampshire in 1921, he was never in the running for a Blue at Cambridge in 1922 and did little later in the season for his county. In 1923 his average for Cambridge was only 15 and he probably owed his Blue to an innings of 64 against Yorkshire, who had Robinson, Waddington, MacAulay and Rhodes to bowl for them, The next highest score was 30. Playing again regularly for Hampshire after term, he was disappointing. However, next year, being down from Cambridge, he was able for the only time in his life to play a full season's county cricket and scored 1,072 runs with an average of 24.36, including hundreds against Sussex, when he and Mead added 266 for the third wicket, and Somerset. After this his place in the side was secure when he was available, but from 1926 on his first-class cricket was limited to two or three matches on his annual holiday and to an occasional appearance for MCC at Lord's. In 1926 he made 113 against Kent and in 1929 obtained the highest score of his career, 159 against Leicestershire in a total of 272. Altogether for Hampshire between 1921 and 1938 he scored 3,603 runs with an average of 22.24. Later he was for many years the county's President. He continued to play club cricket after the war when his commitments allowed. One's picture of him is the typical graceful Etonian bat with lovely wrists and the racket-player's off side strokes, but in fact he could score all round the wicket and played well of this legs. For many years, too, he was one of the best covers in England.
A natural games player, he was in two Eton rackets pairs which reached the final at Queen's and in 1922 was second string to R. H. Hill at Cambridge: they won the doubles but Aird lost his single. In 1923 he was first string and won both his matches. Later he concentrated on tennis and became especially formidable at Lord's, where he won the Silver Racket six times between 1933 and 1949. In the challenge for the Gold Racket he as defeated twice by Lord Aberdare and four times by W. D. Macpherson, both amateur champions. At Cambridge he was virtually promised a soccer Blue if he would learn to head the ball, but he found that this, especially when the ball was wet, gave him such headaches that he did not think it worth it. In later life he was a National Hunt Steward.
He was a man of wide and varied talents and interests, so varied that few of his friends can have been aware of them all, just as few knew the details of his war record. They knew of course that he had been a major in the Royal Tank Regiment, that he had won the Military Cross in the desert and been wounded. They did not know that he had been in almost a record number of tanks that were totally destroyed or that twice he had been the only survivor; that he had been wounded twice, once severely, and that on both these occasions his one thought had been to get back to active service as soon as possible. Few of his friends can have known the full story, but none will be surprised when he hears it.
ALSTON, HALLAM NEWTON EGERTON, who died on October 19, 1985, aged 77, appeared once only in first-class cricket, for Somerset against Surrey in 1933, but he had something to remember it by. His one wicket was that of Hobbs. Apart from that, his analysis of seven overs for 6 runs against the powerful Surrey batting of those days on The Oval wicket shows that he must have bowled with commendable steadiness. Educated at Cheltenham, where he was in the XI, he was for many years a formidable all-rounder in club cricket; an attacking batsman, a fast-medium opening bowler and a good slip or gully. One feat deserves to be recorded. For the Somerset Stragglers against the United Services at Mount Wise in 1935, he and his partner put up 240 for the first wicket in the first innings and 209 unbeaten in the second, each making a century both times, and Alston finished the match by taking six for 18.
AWDRY, AMBROSE LEONARD, who died on October 10, 1986, aged 72, was one of the famous Wiltshire cricketing family. A steady medium-paced bowler, who flighted the ball well, he headed the Winchester averages in 1932 and later for a few seasons did valuable work for the county as an all-rounder.
BARING, AMYAS EVELYN GILES, died in hospital on August 29, 1986, aged 76. Going up to Cambridge from Gresham's, Holt, he did little at Fenner's in his first two summers, though in the second he did have one trial for the University, and later that summer, 1930, he played regularly for Hampshire. His 32 wickets for them cost him 40.78 runs each, but he had innumerable slip catches dropped off him and he attracted attention both by his pace and by his spirit. When, therefore, he started 1931 with ten for 57 in the Seniors' match, he might have expected a good trial: it was never of course likely that he would displace Farnes, but he might have made a formidable opening partner for him. Instead, he was quickly discarded, and while Cambridge were playing Oxford at Lord's, he was playing for Hampshire against Essex at Colchester, where, on a fast, crumbling wicket, he took nine for 26 in the first innings. Nor was this a flash in the pan. For the county that season he took 74 wickets at 22.16. He hoped to play regularly the following season, but a bad car accident later in 1931, in which he dislocated both knees, stopped any question of cricket. It was a tribute to his courage and perseverance that he was able to play a match or two in 1933, bowling at a much reduced pace, and even more that in 1934 he was bowling apparently as fast as ever. Unfortunately he was seldom available, but against Middlesex at Lord's he took nine wickets and against the Australians at Southampton had Woodfull, Brown and Bradman out for 6, finishing with five for 121. After this he was unable to make more than an occasional appearance until 1939, when he took 34 wickets at 22.52, including ten for 110 against Kent at Canterbury. He did not play for Hampshire after the war. With a high action, he was genuinely fast and a great trier. He did not swing the ball much but could make it run away and could at times make it lift awkwardly. His cricket began and ended with his bowling. In all first-class matches he took 197 wickets at 28.46.
BAXTER, ARTHUR DOUGLAS ( SANDY), who died in hospital at Edenbridge on January 28, 1986, aged 76, might have taken a high place among the bowlers of the day had he ever been able to play regularly. In a first-class career extending from 1929 to 1939, he played only 42 matches, but in these he took 189 wickets at 21.74. His one spell of continuous cricket was for E. R. T. Holmes's MCC team in Australia and New Zealand in 1935-36. Apart from this, he made three appearances for Lancashire and two for Middlesex, played for the Gentlemen in 1934, and otherwise for such sides as MCC, Free Foresters, H. D. G. Leveson Gower's XI and for his native Scotland. Yet in 1935, for instance, for Leveson Gower's XI against Oxford University at Reigate, he took thirteen for 72 and later in the season, again for Leveson Gower, eleven for 125 against Wyatt's MCC side to the West Indies at Scarborough. He bowled normally fast in-swingers, but is said to have dismissed one Queensland batsman with a ball which, starting outside the off-stump, dipped in very late, pitched on the middle-and-leg, then whipped away and took the top of the middle-and-off. On this trip, in the first-class matches he took 31 wickets at 27.87, and in all matches 58 at 17.93. He was a bowler pure and simple, and the generally accepted view was that, had he not overlapped with C. S. Marriott, he would have been the worst bat and field of his time in first-class cricket. None the less everyone loved to have him on a side. He was so cheerful and friendly, enjoyed his cricket so much, and helped others to enjoy theirs. He had been in the XI at Loretto and originally played for Devon.
BELLAMY, BENJAMIN WALTER (BEN), who died in hospital on December 20, 1985, aged 94, had been the oldest surviving County Championship player. Joining the Northamptonshire staff in 1912, he had to wait until Walter Buswell retired at the end of 1921 to become their regular wicket-keeper, though he had played a few times in 1920 and 1921. His first match was against Surrey, when P. G. H. Fender hit his record century in 35 minutes and 1,475 runs were scored for the loss of 27 wickets. A competent and reliable'keeper, he held his place until the end of 1935, when he gave way to the New Zealander, K. C. James. In his early matches he had gone in last, but by perseverance and determination he soon worked his way up the order and as early as 1922 made the highest score of his career, a chanceless 168 against Worcestershire at Worcester. His best season as a batsman was 1928 when he scored 1,116 runs with an average of 22.77, including 118 against Surrey at Northampton and 65 and 100 against Gloucestershire at Bristol, where he had Claude Woolley in the second innings put on 203 for the second wicket. His fourth and last hundred was 110 not out against Glamorgan in 1934. Two years after his retirement, he was recalled in a crisis for a couple of matches as a batsman and in the first, against Derbyshire, made 83 in the second innings, the next highest score being 29. Tall and rather clumsily built, though in his young days he had played inside-forward for Northampton Town, he had no grace of style to recommend him nor any great variety of stroke, but his concentration and determination not to get out made him invaluable to a side which, for most of his career, was one of the weakest in batting ever to play in the Championship. Altogether he scored 9,247 runs with an average of 16.54, besides catching 529 batsmen and stumping 125. From 1936 to 1957 he was coach at Bedford School. His old captain, W. C. Brown, wrote of him only a week or two before his own death: A dedicated professional cricketer, his impeccable conduct on and off the field was a tribute to the game and earned him the respect of all who knew him.
BRADSHAW, WALTER HULATT, died on July 13, 1986, aged 77. Going up to Oxford from Malvern, he got his Blue in his second summer, 1930, as an opening bowler and retained his place the following year. Many University bowlers have been far from first-class, but few have given more convincing proof. In his two years his 22 wickets cost 38.46 runs each, his one reputable analysis being four for 15 against Leveson Gower's XI at Eastbourne -although, not seriously regarded as a batsman, he did make 81 in 50 minutes against Gloucestershire. It was therefore a surprise, when meeting him a few years later, back from a teaching appointment in India, to find that he had developed into a formidable bowler while playing in the Ranji Trophy there. Tall and strong, he bowled fast-medium with a high action off a short run, could bring the ball back sharply from the off and also make it lift sharply. At this time he must surely, given the opportunity, have taken wickets in first-class cricket in England. He was for many years a master of Stowe, where he ran the cricket. He also gained a soccer Blue.
BRIDGER, REV. JOHN RICHARD, died in a motor accident at Burley on July 14, 1986, aged 66. A son of E. J. Bridger, who in a long career took more than 1,500 wickets for Dulwich CC, he was in the Rugby XI from 1935 to 1938, when he was captain and had a remarkable match against Marlborough. He made 153 in three hours, held four catches in the first innings and took five for 54 in the second with his leg-breaks. Leaving Rugby at Easter 1939, he went up to Cambridge in October and, being as a theological student exempt from military service, played in four war-time matches against Oxford, besides representing the University at rugger, hockey, lawn tennis and squash. No blues were awarded in those years and the average standard of the University side was little above that of a good college side before the war, but no-one could doubt that Bridger would have got a Blue at any time. He gave further evidence of this in some of the war-time matches at Lord's. When Championship cricket was resumed in 1946, he had the advantage over his contemporaries that he had been able to keep in practice and to gain valuable experience with good players. His batting was based on an eminently sound method and he was a brilliant field, and it was no surprise when, in his first match for Hampshire, he made 50 against Sussex and followed it in the next with 39 and 142 against Middlesex. In his second innings, lasting 4 hours, 40 minutes, he added 179 for the second wicket with G. Hill. Unfortunately, being now a schoolmaster, he was available only in the holidays and, though he continued to play until 1954, he managed for the county only 38 matches in all, in which he scored 1,725 runs with an average of 27.82, including two centuries. He occasionally captained the side.
BROADHEAD, WILFRED BEDFORD, who died at his home in Wath, Yorkshire, after a long illness, on April 2, 1986, aged 82, was for many years prominent in Yorkshire league cricket and played frequently for the Yorkshire Colts and for the Second XI. On his one appearance for the county, against Kent at Tonbridge in 1929, he went in first with Holmes in a side weakened by the absence of Sutcliffe and Leyland. He made only 3 and 2, but had the satisfaction of catching Woolley.
BROWN, WILLIAM CECIL, who died in hospital in Hove on January 20, 1986, aged 85, did great and unselfish service for Northamptonshire between the wars in the dimmest period of their history, when they were seldom far from the bottom of the table and once went three seasons without winning a match. At Charterhouse he had been nowhere near the XI and at Jesus, Cambridge, was no more than a college player, but by 1925 he had by keenness and application become good enough to fill the occasional vacancy in the county side. By 1928 he had secured a regular place, and in that year he scored 877 runs with an average of 21.92, having made the only century of his career, 103 not out against Glamorgan at Northampton. Often handicapped by ill-health or injury, he never did as well again, but he frequently played useful innings, defending or attacking as the occasion demanded. For instance, in 1931 at Trent Bridge, coming in at 18 for five, he helped Bakewell to add 106 in 80 minutes against an attack which included Larwood, Voce and Staples. Brown continued to play until 1937, captaining the side from 1932 to 1935 and scoring in all 2,601 runs with an average of 14.06. From 1938 to 1942 he acted as Northamptonshire's Honorary Secretary. He had an encyclopaedic knowledge of the county and of everyone in it during his lifetime who had attained any prominence in the games-playing or sporting world, and this constantly proved a great help to Wisden's obituaries. Indeed, on the day he went into hospital he wrote a note in his usual firm and immaculate hand to tell us of the death of Ben Bellamy.
BUDD, WILLIAM LLOYD, who died in hospital on August 23, 1986, aged 72, will be better remembered as, from 1969 to 1982, a first-class umpire who stood in four Tests than for his performances as a player. He was tried for Hampshire between 1934 and 1938 as a steady fast-medium in-swing bowler and a hard-hitting tail-end bat, but only in 1935 and 1937 did he appear at all frequently, and in both years his wickets were expensive. He did play two notable innings: 67 not out against Glamorgan at Bournemouth in 1935, when he and A. L. Hosie added 125 for the last wicket, and 77 not out against Surrey at The Oval in 1937. He reappeared in a few matches in 1946. Apart from war service with the county police, his whole life was given to cricket, playing, coaching or umpiring, and he was a man universally loved and esteemed. For Hampshire he scored in all 941 runs with an average of 11.47 and took 64 wickets at 39.15.
BULLOCK, PERCY GEORGE, died at Wythall on December 1, 1986, aged 93. A right-handed bat, he played in three games as a professional for Worcestershire in 1921 with little success. At the time of his death he was the oldest surviving Worcestershire cricketer.
CAMM, JOHN SUTCLIFFE, died at Berkeley on September 18, 1985, aged 60. A left-hand bat and a slow left-arm bowler, he played for Gloucestershire Second XI in 1949 and 1950.
CATLOW, CHARLES STANLEY, died at Northampton on March 7, 1986, aged 78. A batsman of great natural gifts with a beautiful style, he was captain of Haileybury in 1926, but his first-class cricket was limited to two matches for Northamptonshire in 1929 in which he met with no success.
COLDHAM, JOHN MAURICE, who died in hospital at Woking after a long period of ill-health on July 25, 1986, aged 85, was three years in the Repton XI and captain in the last, 1919. His record was not outstanding at school, but in 1918 when he was seventeen, playing at Scarborough in a match sufficiently important for the full scores to be given in Wisden, he made 11 and 24 not out against a Yorkshire side which had Rhodes and Hirst to bowl for them. It was not till 1923, Coldham having first gone out to India, that he went up to Oxford, and in August 1924, playing for Norfolk against Staffordshire, he made 48 [ run out] against the bowling of Barnes. The side's total was 115 and his captain, Michael Falcon, with 19 was the only other batsman to score double figures. This secured Coldham his county cap and also a place in what was originally a Norfolk side to play the South Africans but finished up as a Minor Counties one. The South Africans had that great bowler, S. J. Pegler, but Coldham made 40 and 20 and had much to do with his side's victory in a close match. After this it is not surprising that for many years his place in the strong Norfolk side was never in doubt when he was available: what is surprising, and shows the strength of University batting in those days, is that he had in three years only one trial for Oxford. Tall and strong, he was a good, upstanding batsman, a fine slip and, if required, a competent wicket-keeper. He was for many years a master at Sedbergh, where he ran the cricket for 21 seasons.
COPLEY, SYDNEY HERBERT, who died in hospital in the Isle of Man of April 1, 1986, aged 80, will be remembered for one feat. On the last day of the first Test at Trent Bridge in 1930, England, who had one substitute in the field already, required another and Copley, then on the Nottinghamshire staff, was sent out. Australia, requiring 429 to win, were 229 for three with McCabe and Bradman well set and 195 minutes to go. At this point McCabe on-drove Tate, and Copley, covering a lot of ground, threw himself forward and, as he fell, held the catch in both hands near his ankles. But for this Australia would probably have saved the match and might even have won it. A right-hand bat and slow left-arm bowler, Copley was on the Nottinghamshire staff from 1924 to 1930 but appeared only once for the county, against Oxford University in 1930. From 1933 to 1938 he was professional at Cupar, and from 1939 to his retirement in 1975 coach and head groundsman at King William's College, Isle of Man.
CURNOW, SYDNEY HARRY (SYD), who died in Perth, Australia, on July 28, 1986, aged 78, played in seven Test matches for South Africa, opening the batting in all but one of his fourteen innings and scoring 168 runs. Such a record, however, does not indicate his true ability, and in all first-class matches he scored 3,409 runs with an average of 42.08. Going into the Transvaal side in 1928-29 for the trial series for the team to England, he failed to score in his first innings but made 92 in the second, showing a sound defensive technique and making a special impression in the field with his quick gathering and fast, sure returns. In 1929-30 he followed an innings of 99 against Natal with 108 against Griqualand West and 162 against Orange Free State, putting on 204 for the first wicket with A. Langebrink against the Free State. When Chapman's team visited South Africa the following season, he was chosen for the first Test at the Old Wanderers ground in Johannesburg, where South Africa won by 28 runs - a victory which eventually provided them with their first series win over England since 1909-10. With scores of 13 and 8 he failed to retain his place for Newlands but was recalled for the last two Tests. His other four tests were played in Australia in 1931-32, and he made his highest score of 47 in the third Test at Melbourne. When the teams returned there for the final Test, his 16 in the second innings was the only South African score in double figures as their first innings of 36 was followed by 45 on a vicious sticky wicket. The match, which produced only 234 runs, was completed in 5 hours, 53 minutes. The next season, in the South African Tournament in Cape Town, his talent was in full bloom as he scored 641 runs with an average of 91.57 and hit three centuries: 192 not out against Western Province, 105 against Natal and 224 for the North against the South, the highest of his nine hundreds. He continued to represent Transvaal until 1945-46 and at the beginning of the 1970s he went to live in Western Australia.
CUSH, FRANK, OBE, who died in Australia in November 1985, aged 92, was Chairman of the Australian Board of Control from 1955 to 1959. He was an Honorary Life Member of MCC.
DAER, ARTHUR GEORGE, who died at Torquay on July 16, 1980, aged 73, but whose death was not recorded in Wisden, was an amateur who played for Essex from 1925 to 1935, and from 1929 to 1934 was a frequent member of the side. A fast-medium opening bowler who relied more on movement off the seam than on swerve, he could, in the words of one of his contemporaries, have some of the old pros in a muddle at times. When in 1930 he took 51 wickets at 30.86, besides playing some useful innings and having a batting average of 20.42, it was hoped that he would develop into a valuable all-rounder but he never fulfilled his promise. At times he was effective: in 1933 he took nine for 93 against Gloucestershire at Cheltenham and nine for 95 against Sussex at Horsham. However, as his figures show, he was not sufficiently consistent. In all matches for Essex he took 195 wickets at 31.70 and scored 1,469 runs with an average of 14.83. His highest score was 59 against Worcestershire at Leyton in 1932. A character, who helped to enliven any side on which he played, later he kept a pub in Romford and build a cricket school in the back yard.
DAER, HARRY BRUCE, brother of the above, died at Plymouth on December 19, 1980, aged 62. An opening bowler, he had some trials for Essex as a professional in 1938 and 1939 but did not meet with any success.
DEEPAL, HARSHA, who died in Sri Lanka in 1986, aged 24, as the result of a motor accident, was a stylish left-handed bat and right-arm medium-pace bowler who toured Pakistan in 1983-84 with the Sri Lankan Under-23 team. He had in 1980-81 represented his country against India in an Under-20 series and played for Sri Lanka Colts against the touring Zimbabweans that same season.
de SMIDT, RUPERT, who died in Cape Town, South Africa, on August 3, 1986, aged 103, was believed to be the oldest first-class cricketer. A fast bowler, he played four times for Western Province between 1911 and 1913, taking sixteen wickets at 18.00 apiece.
DUNN, PERCY JOHN HAMPDEN, who died on June 5, 1986, aged 78, as the result of an accident, was one of the best bowlers in London club cricket in the 1930s. A tall medium-pace right-armer, he played for Beckenham, Butterflies and the Band of Brothers and on several occasions represented the Club Cricket Conference. He had been in the Westminster XI in 1925, when he headed their bowling averages.
DURNELL, THOMAS WILFRED, who died on April 10, 1986, aged 84, was a fast-medium bowler with a high action who might have made a big difference to Warwickshire between the wars had he been more frequently available. As it was, after a match or two in 1921 he did not appear again until 1927 when, on his first appearance, he created quite a sensation by taking three for 60 and seven for 29 against Northamptonshire at Edgbaston and came out top not only of the Warwickshire averages but of the first-class bowling averages with fourteen wickets at 12.78. A few matches in the next three seasons showed that this was no fluke, but after that he was seen no more. In fourteen first-class matches he had taken 42 wickets with an average of 28.33. Most of his cricket was played for Smethwick in the Birmingham League.
EARL, KENNETH JOHN, died in hospital on October 13, 1986, aged 60. As a right-arm fast-medium bowler for Northumberland from 1948 to 1965, he took 270 wickets and in 1950 played two first-class matches for the Minor Counties against MCC and the West Indians. In the first of these, at Lord's he took five for 75 in the second innings.
EDRICH, WILLIAM JOHN (BILL), DFC, who died at Chesham as the result of an accident on April 23, 1986, aged 70, was a cricketer who would have been the answer to prayer in the troubled England sides of today and especially in the West Indies in 1985-86. Endlessly cheerful, always optimistic and physically courageous, he was a splendid hitter of short-pitched fast bowling and took the blows he received as a part of the game. When he made 16 in an hour and three-quarters on a hideous wicket at Brisbane in the first innings of the first Test in 1946-47, an innings which Wisden's correspondent described as one of the most skilful batting displays I have ever seen, it was reckoned that he was hit ten times by Lindwall, Miller and Toshack. So far from being demoralised by this experience, he scored in the series 462 runs with an average of 46.20, and that for a side which lost three Tests, two of them by an innings, and drew the other two. Moreover, his cricket did not end with his batting. Though he stood only 5ft 6in tall, and had a low, slinging action, he could off a run of eleven strides bowl genuinely fast for a few overs. Admittedly it was a terrible proof of the weakness of English bowling after the war that at this period he often had to open in Test matches. It is barely credible that in 1950, when his 22 wickets in the season cost him just under 50 runs each, he opened in both of West Indies' innings at Lord's. In fairness it must be added that Walcott, who made 168 not out in the second innings, was missed off him in the slips at 9. Still, in a reasonably strong side he was a valuable change as a fifth or sixth bowler, always apt to upset a good batsman by his unexpected speed. Like many natural athletes, he originally made a reputation as a tireless outfield, but he was soon found to be too valuable in the slips to spend much time elsewhere. One way and another he was always in the game, always trying his hardest.
He came of a Norfolk farming family, which sometimes produced its own XI. Three of his brothers played with some success in first-class cricket and his cousin, John, had later a distinguished Test match career. Bill Edrich first appeared for Norfolk in 1932 at the age of sixteen, and by 1936 had scored 1,886 runs for them in the Minor Counties Championship alone, not to mention an innings of 111 against the 1935 South African side. By then he had begun to qualify for Middlesex, and in 1936 he made three hundreds in first-class cricket for MCC and came second in the first-class averages with an average of 55. So it was no surprise when next year, in his first full season of first-class cricket, he scored 2,154 runs with an average of 44.87, heading the batting, and was picked for Lord Tennyson's side in India. In 1938 he started by making 1,000 runs before the end of May, a target he achieved only with the help of an unexpectedly generous action by Bradman who, captaining the Australians against Middlesex on May 31, made an otherwise meaningless declaration to give him a chance of getting the last 20 runs. After this feat his place in the England side was secure; so secure that he kept it right through the series even though failure followed failure and six innings produced only 67 runs. In the following winter, as a member of the side to South Africa, his ill luck pursued him, five innings bringing 21 runs. At last, in the second innings of the timeless fifth Test, when England were set 696 to win, he saved the side by batting 7 hours, 40 minutes for 219. Timeless or not, the match was abandoned when the score stood at 654 for five: the rain came down, everyone had enough, and the Englishmen left to catch their boat.
The sequel to this innings is perhaps the strangest part of the story. There can surely be no parallel for a batsman failing in eight consecutive Tests and yet keeping his place, but one would at any rate expect that, when he had at last justified the selectors' confidence, he would have retained it. Instead, in 1939, though his average for the season was 49.68, he did not play in a Test against the West Indians, and in 1946, when Test cricket was resumed after seven years' interval, he had only one match against India and did not bat in that. Moreover he was only a late choice for the 1946-47 tour of Australia. Let anyone justify these inconsistencies who can.
During the war Edrich had joined the RAF and had a distinguished career, winning the DFC as a bomber pilot. Up to the war he had played as a professional; after it he became an amateur. Furthermore, until 1938 he had normally opened the innings. When he played his great innings in South Africa, he had been moved down the order, and in 1939 Brown and Robertson established themselves in the Middlesex side as a great opening pair. Thenceforward Edrich's normal place was first wicket. It was in Australia in 1946-47 that he showed himself indisputably a Test player. His batting in the first Test has been mentioned. In the second he scored 71 and 119 and made a gallant attempt to stave off an innings defeat. He followed this with 89 in the third Test and 60 in the fifth.
In England in 1947 came his annus mirabilis. Scoring in all 3,539 runs with an average of 80.43 he beat Hayward's 41-year-old aggregate of 3,518: however, Compton beat it by even more. What is not sufficiently appreciated is that, but for a strained arm, which stopped him bowling after the beginning of August, he might well have equalled J. H. Parks's astonishing record of 3,000 runs and 100 wickets: Edrich had already taken 67 wickets. In 1946 he had taken 73 at 19.28. In the Tests in 1947 against South Africa he made 552 runs with an average of 110.40. At Manchester he made 191, adding 228 with Compton for the third wicket in 196 minutes. At Lord's in the previous Test, also for the third wicket, they had added 370. Edrich made 189.
In 1948, in the disastrous series against Australia, his sole notable contribution was 111 in the fourth Test at Leeds, but next year against New Zealand he averaged 54 with only one century. In 1950 he contributed a typically gallant 71 in the second innings of the first Test at Manchester, but at Lord's in the second he failed abjectly in each innings. His scores were 8 and 8: it would have been better for his reputation if he had taken two first balls. Each time he stayed long enough to make it clear that he was completely out of his depth with Ramadhin and Valentine. Nothing worse for the morale of the younger members of the side can be imagined. Inevitably he was dropped for the two remaining Tests, but for Middlesex he scored much as usual and it was a great surprise when he was omitted from the team for Australia at the end of the season. The Australians themselves were astonished, and when the side proved to be incontestably the worst batting one England had ever sent out, and all the new choices were failures, there were those who thought that his courage and experience might have turned the scale in a series which was closer than the results indicated. No reasons were given at the time for his omission, but in fact an ill-advised late-night party during the first Test against West Indies, followed by his calamitous showing in the second, had convinced the selectors, and not least the captain elect, that the team would be better without him. By a generous gesture Edrich himself was at the station to see the team off and to wish them well.
Although few could have foreseen it at the time, this was the beginning of the end for Edrich. Never again was he to be the force in Tests that he had been. Recalled as Hutton's opening partner for the last three Tests against Australia in 1953, he made 64 at Leeds and was 55 not out when the Ashes were regained at The Oval after a period of eighteen years. But he did not do much in his one Test against Pakistan in 1954, and although at the end of that summer he was picked for Australia, only a fighting 88 in the second innings of the first Test showed what he could once do. That was the end of his career for England. For Middlesex he still made runs, if not on the scale of his great years. In 1951 and 1952 he shared the captaincy with Compton: this, like most such diarchies, was not a success. From 1953, he was sole captain, a position in which he certainly could not be blamed for lack of enterprise. At last in 1957, though he got his 1,000 runs, for the fifteenth time his average dropped to 22.92 and he felt it was time to resign. Next year he played in about half the matches with only moderate results, and at the end of the season he accepted the captaincy of Norfolk, for whom he continued to score runs and to take wickets with slow off-breaks until 1972.
When his first-class career ended he was 42, an age at which many great batsmen have still been batting with almost undiminished powers. However, Edrich had always relied rather on his natural gifts, his wonderful eye, his physical strength and courage than on a studiously sound technique. Granted that he was always well behind the ball when playing a fast bowler, he had a markedly right handed grip and his best strokes were the cut, the hook and the pulled drive. His bat did not have that pendulum-like swing up and down the line which is the foundation of real soundness. Still, he had done enough for the fame and had given much pleasure to many thousands of spectators.
In first-class cricket he had scored 36,965 runs, with an average of 42.39 and made 86 centuries, nine of them double-centuries: he took 479 wickets at 33.31 and held 526 catches. His highest score was 267 not out for Middlesex against Northamptonshire at Northampton in 1947. For Middlesex his figures were 25,738 runs with an average of 43.40 and 328 wickets at 30.41, and in Tests he made 2,440 runs with an average of 40, including six hundreds: he also took 41 wickets at 41.29 and held 39 catches.
ELLIOTT, GEORGE O. J., who died early in 1986, aged 68, was secretary of Leicestershire from 1945 to 1949. He had previously been founder, secretary and captain of the West of England XI which raised much money for war charities in 1944 and 1945.
FISHLOCK, LAURENCE BARNARD, died peacefully in hospital after an operation on June 26, 1986, aged 79. For years he was one of the mainstays of the Surrey side; the first left-hand batsman of any prominence they had had since the early 1870s. Season after season he topped their averages, usually with more than 2,000 runs and an average of about 50. He was largely a county player; a little older than most, he was 28 when he got his cap. Four years later came the war, and when first-class cricket was resumed he was 39, an age when men are retiring from Test cricket rather than starting it. So in all he played in only four Tests: two in 1936 against India, another, also against India, in 1946, and one in Australia in 1946-47. In these he did little. He had also gone on the 1936-37 tour of Australia and on that, though in the opinion of most people he was lucky to be preferred to Paynter, he was equally unlucky to miss six crucial weeks through a broken bone in his right hand. No touring side has suffered so much from injuries as that one and, had he remained fit, Fishlock must, whether in form or not, have had ample opportunity of proving himself. By a cruel stroke of fortune, he again broke a finger on his second tour.
Joining the Surrey staff in 1930, he played against Oxford at The Oval in 1931 and made 41 not out in the second innings, but it was 1934 before he had a real trial, making 598 runs with an average of 31.47. Next year, playing regularly, he made more than 1,000 runs and hit three hundreds, but this hardly prepared people for his advance in 1936. Scoring 2,129 runs with an average of 53.22, he represented the Players at Lord's, took part in two Test trials and in two Tests, and made 100 in each innings for Surrey against Sussex at The Oval. In 1937, after his unlucky winter in Australia, he had almost the only poor spell of his life. In May and June he could get no runs, but then D. J. Knight, whose return to the side after a gap of many years had been only a qualified success, dropped out, Fishlock was moved up to open, a position he continued to occupy to within a year or two of his retirement, and runs immediately began to flow. They included two hundreds in one match against Yorkshire at The Oval, a feat which no one had performed since Knight in 1919. In 1938 he made a century in a Test trial, but with Leyland and Paynter in form and English batting crushingly strong, he had no chance in the Tests.
Trained as an engineer, he spent the war mostly in London making aircraft parts for the RAF and so was able to play some cricket, which meant in 1946he could take up more or less where he left off, making 2,241 runs with an average of 50.47 and being one of the Five Cricketers of the Year in the 1947Wisden. He continued to score as heavily as ever and in 1948 played the highest innings of his career, 253 against Leicestershire at Leicester. In 1952 he still got his 1,000 runs and played some valuable innings which helped Surrey to win the Championship that launched them on their astonishing sequence of seven consecutive Championships, but he wisely decided to retire while the going was good. Later he coached at St. Dunstan's, Catford.
Playing with a sedulously straight bat, he was primarily a front-of-the-wicket player, driving equally well straight or through the covers but also forcing hard off his back foot. Like most left-handers, he was strong to square leg as well. He was a splendid field, especially in the deep, as one might expect for in his young days he had been an amateur soccer international and, later turning professional, had played for a succession of clubs. In all first-class cricket, he scored 25,376 runs with an average of 39.34 and made 56 centuries.
FLOWER, ARTHUR WILLIAM, who died at Eastbourne on June 6, 1986, aged 66, was Secretary of Middlesex County Cricket Club from 1964 to 1980.
FLYNN, ARNOLD EDWARD, who died at Modbury, South Australia, on September 28, 1986, aged 70, was a polished batsman in Lindsay Hassett's Australian Forces team which played in the Middle East in 1941 and 1942 against English, South African and New Zealand Forces teams. In his later years he was the inspiration behind the Adelaide University Cricket Club.
FLYNN, BRIAN, died on August 3, 1986, aged 57, following a yachting accident off Darwin, Australia. A leg-spin bowler who appeared to possess immense potential, he played for Queensland from 1952-53 till 1955-56, having been unable to gain a place for his native New South Wales because of the presence of the Benaud. Although he had some spectacular successes, notably seven for 127 (including the last five for 33) and four for 91 against South Australia in 1952-53, and eight for 148 against New South Wales, that season's Sheffield Shield winners, in 1953-54, his 48 first-class wickets were taken at an average of 38.70.
GOLDIE, ERIC, who died on July 8, 1986, played regularly for Devon from 1928 to 1932. He was a good attacking opening bat and a fine field.
GRIMSHAW, RON, who died in hospital in Oxford on June 26, 1986, aged 64, was the cricket correspondent for the Oxford Mail. He had been reporting the University's cricket and rugger since 1951.
HADINGHAM, ANTHONY WALLACE GWYNNE, died suddenly in South Africa on July 14, 1986, aged 73. Four years in the St. Paul's XI, he made 55 in the Freshmen's match at Cambridge in 1932 and was drafted straight into the University side. After innings of 69 against Essex and 80 against the Indians, when he and A. T. Ratcliffe added 144 in 125 minutes, he was given his Blue but did little at Lord's. Next year, though he started with 34 against Yorkshire, going in first, which paved the way for a remarkable Cambridge win, he lost his place. In 1932 he made one appearance for Surrey but did not bat in a match ruined by rain. Short and slightly build, he was primarily an off-side player, a good driver and cutter, until he emigrated to South Africa in 1946, he was one of the mainstays of Wimbledon cricket.
HARFIELD, LEWIS, died in Winchester Hospital on November 19, 1985, aged 80. Born at Cheriton, near Winchester, he joined the Hampshire staff in 1925 and, after a few trials for the county in 1926 and 1927, played frequently in 1928, when he scored 578 runs with an average of 16.05. In 1929 he made his place secure and received his cap, his record of 1,216 runs with an average of 26.43 and a highest score of 89 against Sussex at Hove representing admirably consistent batting. Against Kent at Folkestone he made 83 and 69, but more significant, in view of the quality of the opposition, was 86 against Yorkshire at Bournemouth, when he and Mead added 183 in three-quarter hours for the third wicket. A determined player with a sound defence, he had strokes on both sides of the wicket and was an especially good hooker. Probably his right position was as an opener, though he often went in lower. An operation kept him out of the side throughout the whole of 1930, and when he resumed his place in 1931 he made 84 in his first innings, but thereafter his batting fell of markedly and his average dropped to 19.12. It was clear that he could no longer stand the strain of first-class cricket. In May 1932 the county received such a discouraging medical report of him that they had no choice but to terminate his agreement. In his brief career he made in all 2,460 runs for them with an average of 20.00.
HARRIS, LESLIE JOHN, who died on October 28, 1985, aged 70, played three matches for Glamorgan in 1947 as a medium-pace bowler and after moving to Kent did wonderful work for the Primary Club, through which cricketers who are out first ball raise money for the blind.
HIGHTON, EDWARD FREDERICK WILLIAM, died on October 9, 1985, aged 61. In 1951, when Statham was playing in a Test, he opened the Lancashire bowling at Colchester and took one for 49. This was his only match for the county, but in the previous season, while a member of the Second XI, he had represented the Minor Counties against MCC at Lord's and taken six wickets. He was a fast-medium right-arm bowler.
HIGSON, PETER, who died in Hove on April 19, 1986, aged 81, was in the Cheltenham XI as a batsman and later captained Lancashire Second XI, making an occasional appearance in the county side. He was a son of T. A. Higson, who played for Lancashire and Derbyshire and had been an England selector.
HILL, ANTHONY EWART LEDGER, who died in Winchester on October 25, 1986, aged 85, was a son of that splendid Hampshire batsman, A. J. L. Hill. In his three years in the Marlborough XI, he showed considerable promise and in 1919, his last season, not only made 50 against Rugby but also, though only a change bowler, took in the two innings eight for 99 and turned into a victory a match which seemed a certain draw. However, in eighteen matches for Hampshire between 1920 and 1930 he never did himself justice and his highest score was 24. All who played with him will remember him as a beautiful field. It was typical of a charming and modest man that the only story the writer ever heard him tell of his county career was how he missed Fender (who went on to make 184) on the boundary at The Oval when he had made 22 and a kindly spectator suggested that he would be more use on the top of the gasometer. Typically, too, he did not bother to add what Wisden says: that the sun was in his eyes at the time. A search of Wisden fails to confirm the story, often repeated, that he and his father once played for the county in the same match.
HOAD, EDWARD LISLE GOLDSWORTHY (TEDDY), who died in Bridgetown, Barbados, on March 5, 1986, aged 90, was West Indies' first captain in a Test match in the West Indies and, at the time of his death, their oldest Test cricketer. A tall, correct right-handed bat, he was slow in running into form when he came to England in 1928 but went on to head the West Indians' averages with 765 runs at 36.42 and in all matches passed 1,000 runs. An unbeaten innings of 149 against Worcestershire gained him a place in the side for the second Test at Old Trafford, but after scores of 13 and 4 he did not play at The Oval. At the end of the tour, he scored 145 in a 12-a-side game against J. Cahn's team at the Loughborough Road ground in Nottingham, followed by 124 against a strong Leveson Gower's XI at Scarborough, going in at the fall of the first wicket and, batting with skill and judgement, being last out. But his dropping of Haig probably allowed Leveson Gower's XI to avoid the follow-on and they recovered to win the match. When F. S. G. Calthorpe's team visited the West Indies in 1929-30, he made 147 for Barbados against them, putting up 261 with Tarilton, and he then captained West Indies in the drawn first Test match at Bridgetown. Opening the innings, he scored 24 and 0 and did not play in the other Tests, the captaincy in those times being the preserve of the home island. He did, nevertheless, appear twice more for West Indies, scoring 6 and 36 at Lord's and 1 and 14 at Old Trafford in 1933, when he scored 1,083 runs with an average of 27.76 on the tour. Against Sussex at Hove, he made 149 not out and with H. C. Griffith put on 138 for the tenth wicket, which more than 50 years on remained a West Indian record. In all first-class cricket between 1921-22 and 1937-38 he scored 3,502 runs, including eight centuries, with an average of 38.48 and took 53 wickets at 36.28 with his leg-spin bowling.
HODGSON, DAVID GLYNN McPHERSON, died in Cape Town, South Africa, on December 15, 1985, aged 46. A middle-order batsman for Western Province in the 1960s and early 1970s, he was Secretary of its Cricket Union at the time of his death.
HORROCKS, WILLIAM JOHN, who died at Melbourne on November 15, 1985, aged 80, was a batsman of great possibilities which, in this country at any rate, he failed to fulfil. With a strong defence, he had strokes all round the wicket and a particularly beautiful square cut. He was, moreover, a splendid field. Born at Warrignton, which then was in Lancashire, he went out to Australia at the age of seven and came into prominence by scoring 75 not out for Western Australia, followed by 31 and 76 for an Australian XI, against Percy Chapman's MCC side at Perth and 51 and 39 next season against Harold Gilligan's side. Returning to England in 1931, he played his first match for Lancashire against the New Zealanders at Liverpool and made 72, helping Hallows in an opening stand of 184 in two hours and a half. A fortnight later, going in against Nottinghamshire at Old Trafford with the score 53 for three, he batted for more than four hours to make 100 not out in a total of 249, and at the end of the season he was second in the county's averages with 343 runs and an average of 34.30. However, in 1932, after a few early failures, he was relegated to the second XI, but neither in that year nor the next could he get any runs for them, and in 1933 he severed his connection with Lancashire and returned to Australia. That he had not, in fact, lost his batting was shown by a fine innings of 140 for Combined Western Australia against G. O. Allen's side in 1936-37, when he and C. L. Badcock put on 306 for the second wicket. In all first-class cricket between 1926-27 and 1936-37 he scored 1,255 runs, including three centuries, with an average of 33.02.
HORTON, WILLIAM HERBERT FRANCIS KENNETH, who died on October 31, 1986, aged 80, was in the Stonyhurst XI as a batsman and in 1927 had two trials for Middlesex without success. Later he played some first-class cricket in India.
INCLEDON-WEBBER, LT-COL. GODFREY STURDY, who died on April 28, 1986, aged 81, was in the Eton XI in 1922, when he made 80 against Winchester, and 1923. A good natural all-round cricketer, he lacked the concentration to make full use of his gifts.
IRANI, JAMSHED KHUDADAAD ( JEMI), died in Karachi, Pakistan, on February 25, 1982, aged 60. He kept wicket for India in their inaugural Test match against Australia, at Brisbane in 1947-48, and also in the second at Sydney, scoring 3 runs and making three dismissals (2 ct, 1 st). At the age of fourteen he had played for Sind in the Ranji Trophy.
JACKSON, PETER FREDERICK, died on October 23, 1986, aged 53. Head of the batting averages at Merchant Taylors', Northwood, in 1950, he later played occasionally for Buckinghamshire, but will be better remembered as for many years the leading spirit in Amersham cricket and their chief run-getter.
JAKEMAN, FREDERICK, died in Huddersfield on May 18, 1986, aged 66. Born at Holmfirth, he was a left-handed batsman who Yorkshire hoped might train on into Leyland's successor. However, in a number of trials in 1946 and 1947 he failed to come up to expectations and in 1949 he appeared in the Northamptonshire side, scoring 969 runs with an average of 31.06 and making hundreds against Derbyshire and Sussex. Next year he was slightly less successful, but in 1951 he jumped right to the front with 1,989 runs and an average of 56.82. Fourth in the first-class averages, he made six hundreds, including 258 not out against Essex at Northampton in five hours and twenty minutes, which beat by 1 run the record score for the county which had been shared by Bakewell and Brookes. He had a wonderful spell in July when four consecutive innings produced 558 runs for once out. In 1952 he missed a third of the matches through injury and was disappointing, his average falling to 29, and in 1953 he completely lost both his form and his place in the side. In 1954 he started with a fine century against Sussex, but he could not keep it up and his last match for the county was against Surrey early in August. After some years in league cricket he was a first-class umpire from 1961 to 1972. Short and strongly built, he was quick on his feet and a fine driver and puller. He should have had a longer career than he did, but he lacked concentration and did not keep himself as fit as he might have. He had a safe pair of hands in the deep, but was apt to damage his arm in throwing. In his first-class career he scored 5,952 runs with an average of 32 and made eleven hundreds. His son later had a brief trial for Northamptonshire.
KENNY, RAMNATH BHAURA, died on November 21, 1985, aged 55. A sound right-handed bat, with quick footwork and stylish strokeplay, and an off-break bowler of almost medium pace, he played in five Tests for India: at Calcutta against West Indies in 1958-59 and four times against Benaud's Australian side in 1959-60, scoring in all 245 runs with an average of 27.22 and a highest innings of 62. Playing for Bombay from 1950-51 to 1960-61, and then for Bengal until 1963-64, he scored in all first-class cricket 3,079 runs with an average of 50.47 and took fifteen wickets at 31.20. Among his eleven hundreds, three in 1956-57 came in successive innings with the third, 218 against Madras, remaining his highest score. A qualified coach, he helped in the development of the young Sunil Gavaskar, and it was while playing and coaching professionally in the north of England that he played for Cumberland.
KIRSTEN, NOEL, who died in South Africa on September 30, 1986, aged 59, held a national wicket-keeping record which, although equalled, had not been bettered. For Border against Rhodesia at East London in 1959-60, he took six catches and made one stumping to record seven dismissals in an innings: he had nine in the match. He played eighteen matches for Border between 1946-47 and 1960-61, scoring 163 runs, taking 27 catches and making five stumpings. His son, Peter, played for Western Province and Derbyshire as well as representing South Africa.
LAWTON, RANDALL, died in July 1986 at the age of 84. Born in Yorkshire, he was a good fast bowler and a useful tail-end hitter who was a regular member of the Staffordshire side in the 1930s.
LINDSAY, THE HON. PATRICK, who died on January 9, 1986, aged 57, was a fast-medium opening bowler in the Eton sides of 1946 and 1947. In 1946, when he bowled particularly well at Lord's, he began the first innings with a spell of six overs for 1 run and one wicket.
LOWE, RICHARD GEOFFREY HARVEY, died on July 5, 1986, aged 82. Captain of Westminster in 1923, he was probably the best all-rounder in the Public Schools, but was prevented by a bad back from playing any cricket in the first summer at Cambridge. He duly got his Blue in 1925, doing particularly well as a bowler, but his batting was disappointing until, sent in at Bath to open, he made 83 (his highest score in first-class cricket) and helped E. W. Dawson to put up 154. An attempt after this to convert him into a regular opener in 1926 failed: indeed so unsuccessful was he both as a batsman and bowler that his place was in jeopardy and he saved it only by an admirable innings of 80 against Surrey at The Oval. Lucky it was for Cambridge that he did so. At Lord's he took five for 22 in the first innings, which he finished with a hat-trick, clean-bowling the last two men with yorkers, and followed this with three for 34 in the second. Thanks to him, Cambridge won a splendid match by 34 runs, and later that month he played two matches for Kent. In 1927 he was disappointing but retained his place. A left-handed bat, he bowled fast-medium right with high arm, coming quick off the pitch and sometimes bringing it back. He could also swing the ball a bit both ways, but at Cambridge he was used as a stock bowler rather than as an opener. He played soccer for four years for the University, was captain, and also played in an amateur international against Scotland in 1924. For many years headmaster of a prep school in Sussex, he lived in Kent in his retirement and gave valuable assistance with Band of Brothers cricket in August. In all first-class cricket he made 697 runs with an average of 18.83 and took 70 wickets at 26.24.
McCOOL, COLIN LESLIE, died in hospital in New South Wales on April 5, 1986, aged 70. He was an outstanding all-round cricketer in Australia in the post-war years and, from 1956 to 1960, for Somerset. Short in stature but of strong build, he was as a right-handed batsman most adept square of the wicket, either with wristy cuts or vigorous hooks, and there were few better players of spin bowling on a difficult pitch. His own spin bowling, a clever mixture of leg-breaks and googlies, had lost something in accuracy by the time he played for Somerset, and English wickets did not always give him the bounce which encourages his type abroad, but in his expansively flighted deliveries and the mystery of the turn came a manifestation of an art that was to disappear from English grounds. He was also a fine slip fielder.
Although he played seven times for his home state of New South Wales before war service with the RAAF, it was with Queensland that he caught the attention of the Australian selectors in 1945-46 with six for 36 against New South Wales, and seven for 106 and 172 as he scattered the field by carefree batting at Adelaide, and four for 102 and seven for 74 against the Australian Services. His 172 against South Australia remained the highest score of his career. Taken to New Zealand for the first-ever Test between the two countries, he scored 7 and, put on to bowl at the end, produced figures of 0.2-0-0-1 as Australia won by an innings and 103 runs. In 1946-47, after taking sixteen wickets against Hammond's MCC side before the first Test, he was especially successful in the series. At Brisbane, on the second evening, he attacked the subdued England bowling to reach 92 not out, but resuming after the rest day he added only 3 more runs before playing back to Wright and being lbw. At Sydney, he took eight wickets, including five for 109, and at Melbourne, hooking and driving with absolute confidence, he scored an unbeaten 104 after going in with Yardley on a hat-trick and Australia 188 for five. Five for 44 in the second innings of the final Test, again at Sydney, saw him finish the series with eighteen wickets at 27.27, Australia's leading wicket-taker with Lindwall, and he scored 272 runs with an average of 54.50. He did little in his three Tests against India the next season, and his thirteen wickets in the Sheffield Shield cost 48.61 each, but he went to England with Bradman's team in 1948. However, with a new ball available after 55 overs and a formidable attack waiting to use it, there was no place for McCool in the Test side. He was, moreover, handicapped by a worn spinning finger, a legacy of his triumphs in 1946-47, which blistered and continually bled, and while he ended with 57 wickets at 17.82, he did not reach his best until late in the tour. In South Africa in 1949-50 he again took 50 wickets, as well as scoring 438 runs, and he played in all five Tests, his five for 41at Cape Town being his best return in a Test match. But in 1950-51, although he was the leading wicket-taker in the Shield that season, he did not get a Test against England; nor against West Indies the following season. By choosing to play as professional for East Lancashire in the leagues, he precluded the possibility of selection for the Australians to England in 1953 and at 37 his Test career was over. He had scored, in his fourteen appearances, 459 runs with an average of 35.50, taken 36 wickets at 26.61 and held fourteen catches.
McCool was 40 when he began his career with Somerset and his talents and his influence were apparent from the start. He failed by 34 runs to reach 2,000 runs and after four seasons at the foot of the table, Somerset finished fifteenth in the Championship. Against Johnson's Australians at Taunton, he scored 90 and then 116 in 95 minutes, one of his three hundreds that year. Next season, with another Australian, Bill Alley, also on the staff, Somerset climbed to eighth, and in 1958 they won twelve games and were third: their best season ever. His 1,590 runs that year included his highest score for the county, 169 against Worcestershire at Stourbridge, and the best bowling of his career, eight for 74 on a sporting pitch at Trent Bridge. He was given a testimonial in 1959, when he scored 1,769 runs and took 64 wickets, and after 1960 he retired and returned to Australia. In his five seasons in English cricket he had scored 8,225 runs with an average of 33.70 and taken 232 wickets at 28.17: only in 1960, when he scored 1,222 runs, had his aggregate dropped below 1,500. In all first-class matches, 251, he scored 12,420 runs with eighteen centuries and an average of 32.85, took 602 wickets at 27.47 and held 262 catches. He also made two stumpings.
MACFARLANE, ROBERT, who died on February 13, 1986, aged 77, played for Scotland against Ireland in 1939 and with innings of 48 and 22 made a useful contribution to a substantial victory.
MACINDOE, DAVID HENRY, Vice-Provost of Eton, died suddenly of a heart attack on March 3, 1986, aged 68. Going up to Oxford after two years in the Eton XI, he took nine for 59 in the Freshmen's match in 1937 and, getting immediately into the'Varsity side, finished up with 42 wickets at 23.53. Against Cambridge he took in the match six for 92 and such an impression did he create that he was picked for the Gentlemen at Lord's, the first freshman straight from school to be picked purely as a bowler since S. M. J. Woods in 1888. In 1938 he was again picked purely for the Gentlemen, this time against the Australians, but in neither of these two matches did he meet with such success. In 1938 he was terribly overbowled for Oxford and his figures suffered accordingly. Altogether he played in four University matches, of which Oxford won three and the fourth was drawn, and in 1946 he captained the side. Indeed, it was fortunate that he was available, for his personality and experience were invaluable in restarting Oxford cricket on the right lines. Taking what was in those days a longish run for a bowler of his pace, he bowled fast-medium in-swingers with a high action. As a bat he had no great pretensions, but in 1939 he scored 43 not out and 51 against the Minor Counties. His own county cricket was played for Buckinghamshire and his first-class career ended when he came down in 1946. However, his interest in the game continued unabated to the end and he had still much to contribute to it. Returning as a master to Eton, he ran the cricket there from 1949 to 1960 and also collaborated with his predecessor, C. H. Taylor, in an admirable little instructional book, Cricket Dialogue. For some years he ran the Oxford Harlequins tour in August and he served on the committee both of IZ and of the Butterflies.
MACLEAN, COL. JOHN FRANCIS, died on March 9, 1986, aged 85. One of the many good cricketers who never got into the XI at Eton, he never when up at Cambridge had a trial at Fenner's either; but, keeping wicket for Worcestershire throughout the summer of 1922, he created such an impression that he was picked as first-string wicket-keeper for the MCC side which A. C. MacLaren was taking to New Zealand and Australia that winter. Of this side he was the last survivor. He fully justified his selection, keeping for the most part quite beautifully and playing many useful innings. On the whole tour he made 458 runs with an average of 21.80. In the first representative match against New Zealand he made 84 and helped his captain add 157 for the eighth wicket. In the third he and T. C. Lowry added 106 in an hour for the sixth wicket, his share being 53. In 1923 he again kept admirably for Worcestershire throughout the season and also played a sensational innings against Nottinghamshire at Worksop. The side's total was 239, of which he made 121 in an hour and a half off the bowling of Barratt, Sam Staples and Richmond. Unfortunately, after this year he could not find time for much first-class cricket. He played his last match for Worcestershire in 1924 and after that his only county cricket was six matches for Gloucestershire between 1930 and 1932. In his career he scored 2,112 runs with an average of 21.55, caught 57 batsmen and stumped 43. A brilliant wicket-keeper, he lacked perhaps the consistency of the top-class professionals, but this was a fault which experience could well have cured. As a batsman, he was a tremendously hard hitter.
MATHESON, ALEXANDER MALCOLM, who died in Auckland, New Zealand, on December 31, 1985, aged 79, played for New Zealand in the fourth Test at Auckland in 1929-30 and was a member of their side to England in 1931, playing his only other Test at Manchester, where play did not start until the last afternoon. That New Zealand side were fairly strong in batting, but their bowling was hopelessly weak and Matheson, though his 44 wickets cost 23.81 runs each, came third in the averages and narrowly missed being second. His best performance was in his first match, when he took four good Hampshire wickets for 49 and bowled the almost unbowlable Mead; but in a miserably wet and cold summer, and handicapped at times by a strained leg muscle, he did not live up to this promise. By the time the New Zealanders reached Canterbury in August he was reduced to the indignity, for a fast-medium bowler, of having seven men on the boundary for Woolley, who promptly cut him for 4 between slip and wicket keeper. Playing for Auckland from 1926-27 to 1939-40 and for Wellington from 1944-45 to 1946-47, he took altogether in first-class cricket 194 wickets at 28.52 and scored 1,844 runs with an average of 23.64. His highest score, and his only century, was 112 for Auckland against Canterbury in 1937-38. On the tour of England, when his usual place was last, he made 72 against Scotland at Glasgow. He had also been a first-class rugger player and in 1946 refereed the international between New Zealand and Australia at Auckland.
MORRIS, HAROLD MARSH, died at Brighton on November 18, 1984, aged 86. A member of the Repton XI in 1915 and 1916, he had a good record as a batsman in both seasons and was captain in the second. At Cambridge in 1919 he scored consistently in the trials, but on his one appearance for the University, against the AIF side, was unlucky enough to make a pair. However, playing for Essex in the vacation, he made 60 against Middlesex in his second match and kept his place until the end of the season. Indeed, he remained a regular member of the side until 1926 and, if his average seldom exceeded 20, it never fell much below it. He played many useful innings and one outstanding one of 111 in three hours against Middlesex at Lord's in 1923, which saved Essex from an apparently certain defeat. But his main asset to the county was his superb fielding, whether at cover or in the country, which was all the more noticeable in a side which had more than its share of stately, not to say static, veterans. Ironically in 1927, when he could no longer play regularly, he surpassed all he had done before by scoring 143 against Somerset at Taunton and following it a week or two later with 166 against Hampshire at Southampton, he and Russell adding 233 for the fourth wicket in 140 minutes. By now it had become clear that the county needed a new captain. A severe illness had virtually ended J. W. H. T. Douglas's great career as a bowler and had also affected his fielding, while the avoidance of any risk when batting had almost become an obsession. Still, had the committee found what he regarded as a suitable successor, he would no doubt have served loyally under him as long as he was wanted. Instead, at the end of 1927, they appointed Morris and Douglas never played for the county again. Not only did he doubt Morris's qualifications as a captain, but he did not regard him as a good enough player and reckoned that he was not sufficiently dedicated to do the job properly. As it turned out, Morris was less difficult that Douglas had been in his later years, and in some ways things went better. However, he was too often absent and in 1932 appeared twice only: this was the end of the first-class career. In all matches for Essex he scored 6,941 runs with an average of 19.77 and made three centuries. A good stylist, who drove and cut well, he looked at his best capable of more than he in fact accomplished. In 1927 he went with Lord Tennyson's side to Jamaica.
NASH, LAURENCE JOHN, died in hospital in Heidelberg, Victoria, on July 24,1986, aged 76. He played in two Test matches for Australia, both at Melbourne: the fifth Test of 1931-32, in which South Africa were dismissed for 36 and 45 on a sticky, and the fifth against England in 1936-37 which Australia won to retain the Ashes. A right-arm fast bowler, not tall but powerfully built, he made the ball awkwardly and got his first Test after taking seven for 50 for Tasmania against the South Africans, his best-ever figures. He took four for 18 and one for 4 but not play for Australia again until he was a surprise inclusion for the decisive match against G. O. Allen's team, the series being level at two Tests a piece after Australia had been 2-0 down. He had upset the Englishmen with his lifting deliveries when taking two for 21 and two for 16 for Victoria against MCC, and in the Test he bowled fast and well, taking four for 70 as England failed to avoid the follow-on and one for 34. In 22 matches, seventeen of them for Tasmania, he scored 953 runs, with an average of 28.02 and one hundred, and took 69 wickets at 28.33. He was famous as an Australian Rules footballer.
PARTHSARATHY, R.T., who died on February 4, 1986, aged 65, played for Madras in the Ranji Trophy championship in 1947-48 as a right-handed bat and medium-pace bowler and in later life was prominent as a commentator on cricket for All-India radio.
PAWSON, ALBERT GUY, CMG, who died in Lamerton, Devon, on February 25, 1986, aged 97, had been for some years not only the oldest surviving cricket Blue but the oldest first-class cricketer of any standing. Three years in the Winchester XI and captain in the last two, he went up to Oxford in 1907. Their wicket-keeper that year had been D. R. Brandt and he in 1908 kept throughout the term, Pawson merely getting a chance against the Gentlemen of England, when he made 41 not out, which remained his highest score in first-class cricket. However, Worcestershire arriving without a wicket-keeper for the last match in The Parks, Pawson, though he had no qualification for them, filled the vacancy, and so well did he keep, stumping three men in quick succession off the intricate lobs of G. H. Simpson-Hayward, that his place was never in question for the rest of his time in residence. He kept four years at Lord's, and such was the impression he created on his first appearance in 1908 that, had not Gentlemen v Players for once preceded the University Match, he must have been picked for the Gentlemen. He captained Oxford in 1910. Meanwhile, in 1909, Lord Hawke, anxious to find a successor for himself as captain and also for David Hunter as wicket-keeper, invited Pawson, who was born in Yorkshire, at Bramley, to play four matches for them. He duly accepted, but on the Authentics' northern tour he injured a finger so badly that he had to withdraw. In any case he was by no means certain that he would have been prepared to give up for cricket a career in the Sudanese service. He rose high in the Sudan, becoming Governor of the Blue Nile, and for years he played hardly any cricket. On retiring in 1934, he took the game up again and from then till the war played much club cricket, largely, as he was living in Kent, for the Band of Brothers, and it was still easy to see what a fine'keeper he must have been in his young days. He continued to play village cricket until he was 70. His elder brother had been a member of the Oxford side of 1903 and he had two sons in the Winchester XI, the younger of whom, H. A., captained Oxford, played for the Gentlemen and for Kent, and like his father had to refuse the captaincy of the county side.
PEARCE, GEORGE SMART, died at Horsham, where he had lived all his life, on June 16, 1986, aged 77. Between 1928 and 1933 he had a number of trials for Sussex without accomplishing much, but in late August 1933, at the suggestion of W. L. Knowles, the county Secretary, he was picked to fill a last-minute vacancy against Yorkshire at Hove. Sussex won by an innings and Pearce played his full part. Going in tenth he made 40 and, after taking the valuable wicket of Holmes in the first innings, he took five for 34 in the second. He played in the two remaining fixtures and scored 32 against the Indians and 80 against Essex at Leyton. In 1934, therefore, he received a good trial but did only moderately, scoring 455 runs with an average of 19.78 and taking 49 wickets at 25.86. At times he bowled well but he was inconsistent. A poor season in 1935 was redeemed only by an innings of 76 off Kent at Hastings, which included three 6s and eight 4s, followed by a stubborn but valuable 54 at Old Trafford in the next match. In 1936 he played twice only, both times against Cambridge, and in the second match made 47. This was his last appearance for the county. An attacking batsman and a right-arm fast-medium bowler, he was a player of distinct possibilities, but the Sussex batting was so strong that he seldom rose above the tail, while for bowling of this pace they already had Tate, Cornford and Hammond. He probably reckoned that a well-established butcher's in his home town offered a more secure future than the changes and chances of a cricket professional's life. For Sussex, he scored in all 1,295 runs with an average of 18.76 and took 89 wickets at 29.07.
RAPHAEL, GEOFFREY LEWIS, died in hospital in London on June 12, 1986, aged 76. A medium-pace away-swinger, who could also turn the ball both ways and had a beautiful action, he seemed likely, when he got his colours at Harrow at the age of sixteen, to become a first-class bowler. Unfortunately he never fulfilled his promise, though by his last year at Harrow, 1928, he had made himself into a useful opening bat. Later that summer he played one match for Middlesex.
RIGHTON, EDWARD GRANTHAM, who died on May 2, 1986, aged 73, made four appearances for Worcestershire as a batsman between 1934 and 1936 without much success. His father had played four times for the county before the Great War.
ROBERTSON, JOHN BENJAMIN, died in South Africa on July 5, 1985, aged 79. He played in three Test matches for South Africa against Australia in 1935-36 as a spin bowler, taking six wickets at 53.50. He gained selection on the strength of taking eight for 96 for Western Province against the touring side, but this was on a pitch taking spin. In the same match, which the Australians won by an innings, Fleetwood-Smith took twelve wickets for 103. In all first-class matches, Robertson took 65 wickets at 24.20.
ROSE, ALFRED, who died in hospital at Worksop on June 21, 1985, aged 91, made one appearance for Derbyshire as a bat in 1924 and failed to score. He was asked to play again later in the summer but replied that he was too old for that class of cricket.
RUDDLE, MARCUS POOLE, died in Dublin in March 1986, aged 81. A right-hand batsman and right-arm medium-pace bowler, he made one unsuccessful appearance for Ireland in 1937, but was a consistent performer over the years for the Pembroke, Phoenix and Clontarf clubs. In recent years he organised the Esso All-Ireland Under-19 competition.
RUSHWORTH, ALFRED WILLIAM, died in Hobart, Tasmania, on December 30, 1985, aged 87. A dependable right-handed bat, he made his first-class début in 1922-23 in the match in which Victoria took 1,059 runs off Tasmania and he went on to play another 23 matches for the island state, scoring 783 runs with an average of 18.64 and holding 30 catches, many of them in the slips.slips. Captain of Tasmania twelve times, he later became a state selector.
SENANAYAKE, ROBERT PARAKRAMA, died in Colombo, Sri Lanka, on April 26, 1986, aged 72. He was president of the Ceylon Cricket Association and Board of Control for Cricket in Sri Lanka for more than twenty years, and it was during his term of office that his country became an Associate Member of the ICC and the steps were taken towards full membership, which was attained in 1981. A stylish opening batsman, after a successful schoolboy career as captain of St. Thomas's college he went up to Cambridge and played in the trials there in 1933 and 1934. He later opened for Ceylon against G. O. Allen's MCC side when they stopped at Colombo on their way to Australia. His father and brother were respectively the first and second Prime Ministers of Sri Lanka.
SMITH, HORACE DENNIS, who died in Christchurch, New Zealand, on January 25, 1986, and 73, was one of the ten bowlers who have taken a wicket with their first ball in Test cricket. Moreover it was his only wicket in his only Test match. A right-arm medium-fast bowler, in the first Test at Christchurch against Jardine's side in March 1933 the twenty-year-old Smith bowled Paynter with the first ball of the second over, the ball swinging late between bat and pad to hit the left-handers middle and leg stumps. With Sutcliffe having been caught behind off the first ball of the match, from Badcock, England were 4 for two. Had Hammond been caught at slip in the first over, England might have been three wickets down: instead Hammond went on to 227 and England scored 560 for eight. In his twenty overs, Smith conceded 113 runs, and for the second Test he was named twelfth man. He played six times for Otago and four for Canterbury, and in his eleven matches took seventeen wickets at 33.52 and scored 404 runs with an average of 22.44.
SPRINKS, HENRY ROBERT JAMES, who died at Bramshaw, near Lyndhurst, on May 23, 1986, aged 80, was amateur who played in 21 matches for Hampshire as a fast bowler between 1925 and 1929. Thought at times he suggested possibilities, his 29 wickets cost 46.13 runs each and his most notable performance was to add in three-quarters of an hour with Livesey for the last wicket against Kent at Dover in 1928. His share was 40.
STUART, ROBERT LIVINGSTONE, died on June 6, 1986, aged 77. Captain of Highgate in 1927, he returned to Argentina, where he was born, and was a member of the South American side in England in 1932. On this tour he made 608 runs with an average of 33.70, his outstanding performance being an innings of 137 against the Army, when for three hours, twenty minutes he displayed a full range of beautifully executed strokes all round the wicket.
TARAPORE, KEKI KHURSEDJI, died in hospital in Bombay on June 15, 1986, aged 76, after being knocked down by a moped. As a slow left-arm bowler and right-handed bat in the lower order, he played without success in one Test match for India in 1948-49 against West Indies at Delhi. His nineteen overs cost 72 runs: he himself scored 2. This was his last season of a career which began in 1937-38, and in all first-class matches he took 148 wickets at 28.77 and scored 441 runs with an average of 11.30. His best bowling was eight for 91 for Bombay against Nawanagar. Later in life he was Secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India and manager of the Indian team to England, in 1967, to Australia, in 1967-68, and to the West Indies, in 1970-71.
TAYLOR, GEORGE RAMMELL, who died suddenly on October 31, 1986, aged 76, captained Hampshire in 1939. He had been a useful bat in the XI at Lancing but would never have claimed to be more than a club player and before taking on the captaincy had made only one appearance for the county, in 1935. A local solicitor, in 1939 he averaged 9.79 and his highest score was 41 against Lancashire. He maintained to the end of his life a keen interest in the county cricket club.
TAYLOR, HOWARD, who died on December 30, 1985, aged 77, was captain of Mill Hill in 1926 and, as a formidable all-rounder was one of the XV who represented the Public Schools against the Australians that year at Lord's. For many years he was a valuable member of the Blackheath side, and in 1937 he played three matches for Kent without conspicuous success. He could hardly have been subjected to a more searching test on his first appearance, which was against Yorkshire at Tonbridge, and, if he was unlucky enough to get a pair, he had the considerable consolation of bowling Sutcliffe. Right-arm medium to slow-medium, he was a stock bowler rather than an opener. By profession he was a stockbroker.
TIMMS, WILFRID WALTER, who died at Godalming on September 30, 1986, aged 84, was such a modest, self-effacing, unpretentious man that in later years many who knew him as a distinguished teacher of French and Spanish never realised that he had been a well-known cricketer. He made his reputation by a performance which is still unique. In 1921, when captain of Northampton Grammar School, he was given leave by the school to play for the county against Kent in May and then against Essex in June. In this second match, Essex made a vast score and Northamptonshire followed on 381 behind, with only a draw to play for and little hope of that. But Timms, who had made 23 in the first innings, helped Haywood, their star batsman, to add 212 and then added 123 with George Thompson, Northamptonshire finished 64 on with five wickets in hand: Timms, who had batted for five and three-quarter hours for 154 not out, was carried off the field in triumph on the shoulders of his schoolfellows. Two men, I. D. Walker and S. H. Day, had made centuries for their counties the year before leaving school, but no schoolboy before or since has played for an innings of that size or length in a county match. Later that season, Timms played for Northamptonshire throughout the summer holidays, on occasion captaining the side, and scored 533 runs with an average of 28.05.
It was therefore a great disappointment that in four years at Cambridge he failed to get a Blue. In his first three years he had only three innings for the University altogether. In his last year he averaged 17.10 for them and made 78 not out against Leicestershire, but that was as far as he got. Perhaps, in view of what he had already accomplished, he deserved a better trial, but Cambridge batting at that period was strong and he never shone in the field, where a weak throwing arm was a grave handicap. Meanwhile he continued to play for his county in the vacations, but did little in 1922 or 1923. It was not until 1925 that, with 837 runs and an average of 29.89, he showed his true form. Slightly built, he had in 1921 scored largely behind the wicket by cuts and deflections. Now he had the strength to drive and made full use of this when, in 1926, he made 128 against Warwickshire in his first match and 112 against Leicestershire in the next, heading the averages in county matches with 33.29. He was, in fact, the soundest batsman they had and continued to play for them in the holidays until 1932. Altogether he made 3,855 runs for them, including four centuries, and averaged 22.81.
After some years as a master at Oundle, he moved in 1930 to Charterhouse, where he ran the cricket from 1932 to 1946. Charterhouse had always been a famous soccer school: the cricket had been neglected. J. T. Morgan, captain of Cambridge in 1930, once said that in his time in the school, cricket had been regarded merely as a means of keeping the footballers fit in the summer. There had never been a Master in Charge of Cricket in the ordinary sense of the phrase. Indeed, only twice had there been a first-class cricketer on the staff: F. G. Inge in 1865 and C. B. Fry in 1896 and 1897, and episode of which both he and his biographers have understandably thought it best to say as little as possible. The school had, of course, produced good players and sometimes good XIs, but they owed little to the system or the coaching. Within a few years of Timms taking over, however, it had become one of the best cricket schools in England.
The extent of his achievement is to be measured not by the two great batsmen who were in the school under him, John Lomas, now sadly forgotten by all save his contemporaries, and Peter May, though both these acknowledged their debt to him, but by the inexhaustible supply of supporting players who ensured a series of good XIs. Timms himself would have been the first to acknowledge his debt to the professionals who helped him, Bob Relf from 1932 to 1937, Wills Walker to tide over a gap in 1938, and George Geary from 1939 on, but he would have been too modest to say that Geary was entirely his own selection. At that time there were several famous professionals in the market, some with even more distinguished records. Timms was adamant throughout that he wanted primarily a bowler, not a bat, and that the bowler he wanted was Geary. Generations of Carthusians will attest the wisdom of his choice. They will also attest that in any list of the great Public School coaches, Timms should hold an honoured place.
Peter May writes: He was of great assistance to me in developing the basics of my batting. He was always patient and encouraging: we valued his advice because he had been successful himself in county cricket. He was a very fine player of the cut.
WADDINGTON, JACK E., died in South Africa on November 24, 1985, aged 66. A right-arm slow bowler who relied more on accuracy of line and length than spin, he was South Africa's youngest first-class cricketer when, aged 15 years 320 days, he made his début for Griqualand West against Eastern Province in 1934-35, and when he retired 25 years later he was the leading wicket-taker in the Currie Cup with 317 at an average of 21.75. His 53 wickets in 1952-53 made him one of only three bowlers to take 50 wickets in a Currie Cup season.
WAGENER, JACK GORDON, died at Eastbourne on June 18, 1986, aged 81. A left-hand bat with plenty of strokes and an inclination to attack, and a right-arm fast-medium in-swinger, he had a fine record in the Bradfield XI and at Cambridge might well have been in the running for a Blue in years when there was less talent. As it was, going in number ten of the University against Yorkshire in 1927, he made 40 and put on 77 for the ninth wicket with J. T. Morgan, and a week or two later, again batting at ten, he scored 37 not out for Sussex against the University. However, this was as far as he got, though he afterwards did play a few more matches for Sussex. Becoming a schoolmaster, he was for many years in charge of cricket at Rossall. He had one curious experience in club cricket. Playing for Eastbourne against the Cryptics he was out for 98, two separate short runs having been called against him after he had passed 90.
WAITE, MERVYN GEORGE, died in Adelaide, Australia, on December 16, 1985, aged 74. A hard-hitting batsman and medium-pace bowler, who also bowled off-breaks, he played two test matches for Australia on the 1938 tour of England at Leeds and The Oval and opened the bowling. At The Oval, where England made 903 for seven declared, his analysis was 72-16-150-1, the wicket being that of Compton, bowled for 1 after coming in when the score was 547 for four. As only 8 runs had been added since Paynter was lbw to O'Reilly without scoring, the Australians might have viewed this as a breakthrough but for the presence of Hutton at the other end. On the tour, Waite did well enough as an all-rounder without making himself indispensable to score 684 runs with an average of 25.33 and take 56 wickets at 25.96. At Bramall Lane, on a pitch affected by rain, he took seven for 101 in Yorkshire's first innings with a mixture of swing and off-spin: as well as securing him a place in the Leeds Test, these were his best bowling figures. He did not take a wicket at Headingley, but his partnership of 37, of which he scored 3, for the seventh wicket with Bradman saw Australia edge ahead on the first innings and helped Bradman move towards his third century in successive Test innings on the ground. Australia won this match to retain the Ashes. In 1939-40, as South Australia compiled 821 for seven declared against Queensland, he scored 137, the only hundred of his career, and added 281 with C. L. Badcock in a record fifth-wicket partnership for the state. It was also against Queensland, after the war, that he made his last appearance, finishing with memorable figures of four for 11 as Queensland scored 101 to win by five wickets. In all first-class cricket, from 1930-31 till 1945-46, he scored 3,888 runs with an average of 27.77, took 192 wickets at 31.61 and held 66 catches. His innings of 239 for West Torrens against Port Elizabeth in 1935-36 was still a record for the Adelaide District competition at the time of his death.
WATKINS, WILLIAM RICHARD, died on October 15, 1986, aged 82. As a right-handed bat in the middle order and right-arm slow bowler who could turn the ball both ways, he played 27 times for Middlesex as a professional between 1930 and 1937. His highest score for theM was 83 against Surrey at Lord's in 1933, when he helped Hendren add 174 and, though he could not save the match, turned what looked like a walkover into an honourable defeat. For MCC against Kent at Folkestone in 1936, he batted for two and three-quarter hours without mistake to score his only hundred, 115, and with Bill Edrich put on 198 for the fourth wicket. His best bowling was also for MCC, against Cambridge at Lord's in 1939 when he occasioned some surprise by taking five for 31 in 9.4 overs in the first innings. In all first-class cricket he scored 867 runs with an average of 18.84 and took eighteen wickets at 20.88. He later became coach of MCC's groundstaff.
WEBSTER, WILLIAM HUGH ( TAGGE), died after a long illness on June 19, 1986, aged 76. Going up to Cambridge from Highgate, where he had been a successful all-rounder, he was not seriously in the running for a Blue in his first two years and in 1932, given a good trial, did little and seemed to have lost his chance. However, playing for the Foresters against the University in the last match of term he was, for almost the first time in his life, sent in first, and in innings of 29 and 42 he showed such powers of concentration and defence that he was taken on tour as an opener and, confirming the good impression he had created, played in that capacity at Lord's. Doubtless his superb fielding (he was an amateur soccer international) had something to do with the choice. Between 1930 and 1947 he played 45 matches for Middlesex. Altogether in first-class cricket he scored 1,870 runs with an average of 19.89, including one century, 111 for Middlesex against Gloucestershire at Bristol in 1936, and some rather mild left-arm medium-pace bowling brought him 21 wickets at 22.76. In later life he served on the MCC committee and was President of the club in 1977. He was President of Middlesex in 1980.
WEIGHTMAN, WESLEY, who died on July 29, 1986, aged 78, played for Durham for some years in the 1930s. A good bat, he was the county's Honorary Treasurer from 1970 to 1981 and President from 1982 to 1986.
WILCOX, ALFRED GEORGE SIDNEY, who died on July 30, 1986, aged 66, played for Gloucestershire as an amateur in 1939 and as a professional from 1946 to 1949. A left-handed bat, who sometimes opened, he made many runs for the Second XI, but could never quite secure a regular place in the county side. Altogether he scored 835 runs with an average of 15.75. His highest score was 73 against Hampshire at Bournemouth in 1948.
WILLIAMSON, CHARLES RICHARD, who died in Bradford on February 4, 1986, aged 85, was one of the best-known cricket writers in England. Known to everyone as Dick, he reported on cricket and soccer for almost 65 years and was acquainted with every Yorkshire player for more than 50 years. He possessed a keen mind for statistical detail and thus was accepted as the final arbiter in many-press box arguments. After working for the Bradford Telegraph and Argus and the Yorkshire Sports, he became the agency man on Yorkshire's home grounds for almost twenty years never missed a game.
WILSON, MAJOR CYRIL JOHN, who died suddenly on May 7, 1986, aged 86, was in the Eton XI in 1916, when he headed the batting averages, and in 1917, when he made 80 against Harrow, but he will be better remembered for his services to Greenjacket cricket. Apart from all the runs he made for them, he was for years their secretary.
WRIGHTSON, ROGER WILFRID, died at Whitehaven on September 13, 1986, aged 46. Born at Elsecar in Yorkshire, he played for Essex, where his father was a schoolmaster and where he had been brought up, in twelve matches as a left-handed batsmen between 1965 and 1967. His highest score was 84 against Warwickshire at Clacton in 1965, when he batted for more than four hours and was top scorer in a total of 163. Later he played for Cumberland.
Matches-25: Won 10, Lost 5, Drawn 9, Abandoned 1.
|May 3||Charterhouse School||Won by five wickets|
|May 10||Honourable Artillery Company||Lost by 33 runs|
|May 11||SandhurstWanderers||Won by 12 runs|
|May 18||Staff College, Camberley||Lost by five wickets|
|May 24||Eton Ramblers||Drawn|
|June 7||Hurlingham CC||Drawn|
|June 8||Lord Porchester's XI||Drawn|
|June 14||Eton College||Drawn|
|June 17||Winchester College||Drawn|
|June 21||Guards CC||Won by 108 runs|
|June 22||London New Zealand CC||Won by five wickets|
|June 28||Harrow School||Won by seven wickets|
|June 29||Lavinia, Duchess of Norfolk's XI||Drawn|
|July 5||Earl of Bessborough's XI||Drawn|
|July 6||Hagley CC||Drawn|
|July 12||Green Jackets Club||Won by one wicket|
|July 13||Rickling Green CC||Losst by two wickets|
|July 19||Bradfield Waifs||Lost by eight wickets|
|July 27||Royal Armoured Corps||Won by 113 runs|
|August 2||Band of Brothers||Won by nine wickets|
|August 3||R. Leigh-Pemberton's XI||Abandoned|
|August 9, 10||South Wales Hunts XI||Drawn|
|August 30||Hampshire Hogs||Lost by six wickets|
|August 31||J. H. Pawle's XI||Won by three wickets|
|September 7||Captain R. H. Hawkin's XI||Won by 128 runs|