Dick Pollard

POLLARD, RICHARD, who died on December 16, 1985, aged 73, first played for Lancashire second XI in 1933. By 1938, when he took 149 wickets, he had established himself in first-class cricket as a fast-medium bowler and was bowling well for the Players at Lord's. The war took away what should have been his best years as a bowler, but in 1946, though 34, and still in the Army, he made an immediate impression. He had retained his ability to move the ball both in the air and off the pitch. He was invaribly accurate. His heavy build made him no great asset in the field, but he had the strength and enthusiam to bowl long spells if required.

Having taken nine for 53 on a damp pitch for the Players at Lord's, he was chosen for his first Test, in which he took five Inidan wickets for 24 in the first innings at Old Trafford. In Australia in 1946-47 he begun promisingly , having Bradman caught in the slips in the M.C.C. match against South Australia, but Voce or Edrich was preferred as Bedser's partner with the new ball in the Test matches and Pollard's only test was against New Zealand. In 1948, against Australia he played in the last two of his four tests. His dismissal of Bradman at Old Trafford, lbw for 7, made a stir in the prevailing climate of Australian dominence, and he also bowled Bradman for 33 at Headingly before toiling unavailingly in the second innings while Australia made their historic 404 for three. As a rugged number eleven batsman, he is mainly remembered perhaps for the violent pull in the test match against Australia at Old Trafford in 1948 which had Barnes at short-leg carried off on a stretcher with damaged ribs. In his four tests he took fifteen wickets at 25.20.

Dick Pollard retired after the 1950 season, having taken 1,122 first-class wickets at 22.56 apiece. His reputation as a great trier commanded him to the Lancashire public so warmly that his benefit in 1949 produced £8,000, a figure surpassed only twice previously in England.

© John Wisden & Co