This section records the lives of those who died during 2006 and were:
Some of those who appeared in fewer than ten first-class matches are included under Briefly Noted after the main listing. Wisden always welcomes information about those who might be included. Please send details to firstname.lastname@example.org or to Matthew Engel at Fair Oak, Bacton, Herefordshire HR2 0AT.
SAINSBURY, SIMON DAVID DAVAN, died on September 27, 2006, aged 76. A member of the famous grocery family, Sainsbury scored 100 for Eton against Harrow at Lord's in 1947 after going in as night-watchman. "A mere prop to a tottering edifice," wrote a flowery Times correspondent, "proved to be a pillar of granite." He later rose to become deputy chairman of the family business. Though he made no fuss and accepted no honours, Sainsbury gave away an estimated £100m to various causes, mainly in the arts, but also to the gay rights campaign group Stonewall, which he funded from its early days. He celebrated his 40-year partnership with Stewart Grimshaw in a civil ceremony shortly before his death.
SCOTT, ROY HAMILTON, who died on August 5, 2005, aged 88, was a steady batsman and fast-medium bowler whose career for Canterbury stretched over 14 years. Scott won his only New Zealand cap in the one Test played by England in 1946-47 after their bruising tour of Australia. He took the wicket of Bill Edrich in a rain-affected draw.
SEAMER, JOHN WEMYSS, died on April 16, 2006, aged 92. Bespectacled and beaky-nosed, Jake Seamer was an excellent all-round sportsman who won Blues at Oxford for cricket and hockey each year from 1934 to 1936. He had already played for Somerset before that. Unlike some amateur batsmen of the day, Seamer was steady rather than spectacular: "I sort of held the fort quite a lot," he told David Foot for his county history Sunshine, Sixes and Cider. "I remember stands of 60 or 70 with Arthur Wellard, but my share would usually be half a dozen." Three of his four first-class hundreds came in 1934, including 194 for Oxford against the Minor Counties, when he added 218 with his close friend "Mandy" Mitchell-Innes (see above), whose career ran in parallel. They both left county cricket for the Colonial Service in Sudan (where Seamer once scored a century before breakfast, as the matches started early to avoid the worst of the heat), and returned after the war to share the Somerset captaincy in 1948. It was not a great success: Somerset won only one of Seamer's seven matches in charge, despite his insistence on carrying a railway sign saying "To Tonbridge" in his cricket bag as he thought it was a lucky charm. They eventually finished 12th in the table. Seamer later became a housemaster at Marlborough College, his old school, and served two terms as mayor of Marlborough.
SHIRREFF, ALEXANDER CAMPBELL, died on December 16, 2006, aged 87. Alan Shirreff won a Blue at Cambridge before the war, and turned out for three counties afterwards. He first played briefly for Hampshire, and very briefly for Somerset in 1958. In between, he spent seven seasons with Kent, playing irregularly as a persistent seam bowler and modest batsman, but achieving enough to be awarded his cap in 1952. His cricket had to fit in with serving in the RAF, in which he rose to the rank of squadron leader. Shirreff also had a short stint as Somerset coach, which ended after he fell out with the captain, Maurice Tremlett.
Lieutenant-Colonel SHUJA-UD-DIN BUTT, who died on February 7, 2006, aged 75, was a left-arm spinner and a mainstay of the Pakistan attack on their first tour of England in 1954. On the grey opening day of the Old Trafford Test, Shujaud- Din bowled 37 consecutive overs between 12.30 and 5.15 from the City End, keeping England's batsmen in check, and dismissing May, Compton and Graveney. But although he played in 19 Tests, he never did take more than three in an innings and finished with only 20 wickets in all. As a batsman, he could be equally uncompromising, spending 318 minutes over 45 in a vain attempt to stave off defeat against Australia in Lahore five years later. But mostly, his results with the bat were in keeping with Pakistan's modest horizons in that era, though he was versatile - in only 32 innings, he batted everywhere except No. 5 and, beneath Test level, he could be highly effective. He made his maiden century at Taunton on the 1954 tour from the top of the order: having missed the first innings when the declaration came at the fall of the ninth wicket, he was promoted to open and responded with 135. In 1961-62, he had match figures of 75.4-45-61-12 for Services at Lahore, on his way to a then-record 48 wickets in a season in the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy. An army officer who was briefly taken prisoner during Pakistan's war with India in 1971, he moved into cricket administration, and managed the 1976-77 tours of Australia and the West Indies. He caused some controversy when, angered by the Australians' sledging, he observed that he was "not surprised by their behaviour - most of their cricketers are uneducated, whereas most of the members of the Pakistan team are university graduates."
SMITH, HAROLD WILLIAM, died on November 11, 2006, aged 89. Bill Smith was a sports photographer, for many years Arsenal's official one, who also took a great interest in cricket. He built up an impressive archive of head-and-shoulders portraits, many of which appeared in Wisden over the years.
SPEAR, MARY FRANCES, died on April 10, 2006, aged 92. A fast-medium bowler from Bath, she played in the first four official women's Tests on tour in Australia and New Zealand in 1934-35, taking five for 15 from 34 overs as England won the First Test, at Brisbane's Exhibition Ground. Further economical performances followed, and she finished with 14 wickets for just 81 from 117 overs.
STANFORD, ROSS MILTON, DFC, died on July 11, 2006, aged 88. An early developer who made an unbeaten 416 for his Adelaide school, Lockley's, aged 14, Stanford is best remembered for his part in the joyous Australian Services tour of 1945. Stanford, who had spent much of the war with 617 Squadron - the Dambusters - played consistently, scoring 49 in the first Victory Test at Lord's, where he put on 99 with Keith Miller. Back in Australia, Stanford made 153, his only first-class hundred, for the Services against Tasmania, but soon retired from cricket to take over his family's market garden. He had started his state career a decade earlier, against Tasmania at Adelaide in March 1936, being so nervous going out to bat with Don Bradman (en route to 369) that he was run out without facing a ball.
STERLING, GEORGE, who died on May 18, 2006, aged 71, was a long-time Jamaican administrator who often managed the island's teams, and also the West Indies Under-19 side to England in 1993. A stalwart of Kingston's Melbourne club, Sterling was also a member of the West Indies Cricket Board.
STREETON, RICHARD MARSH, died on June 30, 2006, aged 75. Dick Streeton was on the staff of The Times from 1969 to 1993, and for most of that time was effectively deputy cricket correspondent to John Woodcock. In particular, he took over when Woodcock cut down his touring during his six-year stint as Wisden editor. This made Streeton one of the game's most-travelled writers, and when he attended Zimbabwe's debut Test in October 1992, he became (with the Indian R. Mohan) the first man to report Tests from nine countries. Earlier, he had been a sports correspondent for Reuters. Streeton would stoically lug several record books on every tour ("Self-sufficiency, old boy"), and loved the game's mathematics; he was a long-serving president of the Association of Cricket Statisticians. Colleagues saw Streeton - imposing, pipe-smoking, a touch eccentric - as the quintessential Englishman abroad, and nicknamed him "Hawkins", after the actor Jack. His day-to-day reporting was conscientious rather than elegant but, when The Times failed to publish for a year in 1978-79, Streeton took the time to research a biography of P. G. H. Fender, and the result was superb.
SULLIVAN, JOHN, died on February 22, 2006, aged 61. Arguably the first player to be branded a one-day specialist, Sullivan was a key part of the formidable Lancashire team which won a hat-trick of Gillette Cups (1970-1972) and the first two Sunday League titles, in 1969 and 1970. He was a team man, always willing to hit or block as required, a fine fielder and an underrated swing bowler. And he really could hit: he made 43 off 14 balls in a Sunday League match against Leicestershire in 1970, at a time when such feats were almost unknown. In first- class cricket, he never achieved a hundred or a five-for, and was always a fringe player, but he played 154 matches, perhaps partly because he was a good man to have around. "Sully" had been an amateur boxing champion, and once reputedly decked a man who made a racist remark in a pub. But he was the most affable of cricketers, always ready to have a laugh with anyone, including the gatemen, the members or the opposition - one of his tricks was to wave at the batsman as he was running up to bowl. He was also well-known as one of cricket's thirstiest players, even in a thirsty era, and, after he left Old Trafford in 1976, he took over a pub near Manchester. Tragically, he always preferred buying to selling, and his decline was long, inexorable and in the end heart-breaking. After he lost the business, several of his old team-mates tried unavailingly to help.
SULLY, HAYDN, who died on December 14, 2006, aged 67, was an off-spinner for Somerset and Northamptonshire in the 1960s. Given few chances at Taunton because of the presence of Brian Langford, he moved counties and made an immediate impact. He took 27 wickets in three consecutive August wins in 1965 as Northamptonshire charged towards (but narrowly missed) what would have been their first Championship. The following year he superseded the left-armer Malcolm Scott as the county's No. 1 spinner, and took 101 wickets, with 80 more in 1967. But he became less effective, and faded out by the end of the decade. "Haydn was a really big spinner of the ball," said his team-mate Brian Reynolds, "and I think he could have gone right to the top. But he couldn't match the top bowlers with the one that drifts away. If he tried that, it always looked like an outswinger, so eventually he got worked out. On favourable wickets, though, that didn't matter so much, and he was a real good 'un then."
SURFLEET, Dr DESMOND FORD, died on May 13, 2006, aged 94. An Irishborn right-hander, he played 14 matches for Cambridge University and Middlesex between 1931 and 1933 without conspicuous success, beyond an innings of 86 on his debut, against the touring New Zealanders at Fenner's.
SYMCOX, RODGER LEONARD, who died on August 22, 2006, aged 69, played 12 matches as a batsman for Griqualand West over six seasons from 1957-58, but never improved on his debut 36 against Border. He later turned to umpiring, standing in 46 first-class matches in South Africa, mainly in his home town, Kimberley. His son, Pat, won 20 Test caps as an off-spinner.
TAYFIELD, CYRIL, died on September 19, 2005, aged 72. The younger brother of Hugh, the great South African off-spinner, Cyril Tayfield played 37 first-class matches over 13 years, mainly for Transvaal and Griqualand West, scoring one century for each, and adding 56 wickets with his medium-pacers, nearly half of them in 1951-52, his first season.
TAYLOR, ALISTAIR INNES, died on February 7, 2004, aged 78. "Scotch" Taylor was a prominent all-round sportsman who was skilled in hockey, squash and bowls - and cricket. He won one Test cap for South Africa, against England in the inaugural Test at the new Wanderers ground in Johannesburg over Christmas 1956, when the regular opener (and captain) Jackie McGlew was injured. Taylor - described by his team-mate Roy McLean as "a bonny fighter" - emulated McGlew's legendary stickability by making 12 singles in 106 minutes, but managed only six in the second innings as South Africa subsided to 72 all out and defeat. He was twelfth man for the next Test, when McGlew returned, and never featured again. Taylor had been unlucky to miss the 1955 England tour, after topping the batting averages at home in 1954-55 with 65.85, including a career-best 180 for Transvaal against Western Province at Ellis Park. He died in a nursing-home after a stroke, and his death went unnoticed by the cricket fraternity for more than two years.
THICKNESSE, JOHN DACRES, who died on February 26, 2006, aged 74, was cricket correspondent of the Evening Standard for 30 years, from 1967 to 1996, and one of the best-known members of the English press corps. "Thickers" was the eternal boy, in love with the game and the life, bringing a gambler's eye to the intricacies of cricket, just as he did to golf, cards and backgammon. Educated at Harrow (he played against Eton at Lord's from 1948 to 1950) and, briefly, Oxford, he was sometimes seen by colleagues as aloof and selfish. This was partly a reflection of his job. The Standard expected Thicknesse's coverage to be very different from the morning papers, the news agencies and (in his early years), his fearsome rival on the Evening News, E. M. Wellings. This rendered normal journalistic teamwork impossible. Instead, he would pursue erudite, exclusive and often bizarre theories on the game, frequently asking baffled England captains to validate them at press conferences. Mike Gatting was a master of the appropriate response, a half-reproachful, half-affectionate "Thick-ers!" The job that Thicknesse arguably deserved as correspondent of The Times or Telegraph never quite came his way. But, with zest undiminished, he reported county cricket for The Times in his decade of official retirement.
THORN, PHILIP, who died on May 22, 2006, aged 69, was one of the founder members of the Association of Cricket Statisticians in 1973, and served on its first committee. Thorn specialised in tracking down biographical details of obscure players, and was a co-editor of the Who's Who of Cricketers, first published in 1984; the database built up for that paved the way for the cricketarchive.co.uk website.
UMRIGAR, PAHLANJI RATANJI, died on November 7, 2006, aged 80. When his international career was ended by back problems in 1962, Polly Umrigar had played in more Tests (59) and scored more runs (3,631) and centuries (12) than any other Indian. Big and burly, Umrigar liked to pummel the ball, hooking and pulling savagely as well as driving with rare panache. His maiden century, an unbeaten 130, helped set up India's first Test victory, over England at Madras early in 1952, and he was expected to be one of the middle-order stars of the return tour of England later that year. He scored freely in the county games, piling up 1,688 runs all told, but was a miserable failure in the Tests, often found backing away against the raw pace of the young Fred Trueman. Tony Lock, fielding at short leg, is supposed to have complained that he couldn't see properly as Umrigar, who managed only 43 runs in the four Tests, was retreating into him.
It was only a temporary blip, though: the following winter Umrigar was happily tucking into some quick bowling in the West Indies, and he continued to do so - in his penultimate Test, in Trinidad in 1962, he flogged Wes Hall, Charlie Stayers and Garry Sobers for a rapid unbeaten 172, smashing four fours off Hall's first over with the second new ball. Umrigar's highest Test score was a boundarystudded 223, India's first double-century, against New Zealand at Hyderabad in 1955-56. He was rewarded with the captaincy for the next game, one of eight in which he led India, winning two. His 49 first-class hundreds included eight other doubles (six in England), the highest 252 not out against Cambridge University at Fenner's on his second tour in 1959, when he finally laid the Trueman bogey to rest with 118 in the Fourth Test at Old Trafford.
Umrigar bowled little at first, but he turned himself into a reasonable all-rounder, usually with flattish off-spin but sometimes speeding up and opening the bowling with off-cutters. He once took six for 74 in a Test against Pakistan, and his best first-class figures were seven for 32. Umrigar won seven Ranji Trophy finals with Bombay, captaining in three of them, and also played in the Lancashire League. After retirement, he moved into administration, chairing the selection committee, managing three overseas tours, and eventually becoming executive secretary of the Indian board. He was popular with the players: Ravi Shastri, a later Indian all-rounder, said, "He was the finest human being among cricketers I've known. Like a doctor to patients, he was one to the game of cricket. You could go to him any time you needed advice." Umrigar was also responsible for pitch preparation at Mumbai's Wankhede Stadium, and there is a restaurant named after him down the road at the Brabourne Stadium, whose guiding light, Raj Singh Dungarpur, remembered Umrigar as "the most complete cricketer".
VAN DER SPUY, TOBIAS MOSTERT HENRY, died on June 17, 2006, aged 91. Henry van der Spuy was a left-handed bat and right-arm bowler who made his first-class debut for Griqualand West at 18, and later played for Western Province and Orange Free State. The highest of his three centuries was an unbeaten 121 for Western Province to stave off defeat by Transvaal in January 1937.
WALCOTT, KEITH EYRE, died on July 11, 2006, aged 82, six weeks before his more famous brother, Clyde. The older Walcott also played for Barbados, making his debut as a 16-year-old early in 1941. He hit 72 against Trinidad in 1942-43, but made more of a mark as an administrator, serving the Barbados Cricket Association for 35 years and the West Indies board for more than 30. He was a Test selector from 1970 to 1974.
WALTON, ARTHUR CHRISTOPHER, died on February 2, 2006, aged 72. A hard-hitting batsman, especially off the front foot, Chris Walton had a nomadic life: born in Guyana, schooled at Oxford, ending up in Australia. He had three seasons for Middlesex, but his somewhat loose technique was exploited by county bowlers, and he failed to add to his three hundreds for Oxford University, whom he captained in 1957, his third year as a Blue. His best year was 1956, when his 1,200 runs at 38.70 included those three centuries - against Lancashire, Sussex (the fastest of the season, in 61 minutes) and in an innings victory over Warwickshire, when he romped to 152 after reaching his century with a six off Billy Ibadulla. Walton came close to 1,000 runs in 1957 as well, but his highest score in 31 Championship matches was 76.
WALTON, STEPHEN, who died on April 29, 2006, aged 50, suffered a heart attack while bowling in a club match for Oldends, in Gloucestershire. Team-mates, including his son David, failed to revive him. He was a teacher at a local school for children with behavioural difficulties, whose headmaster Bob Hunt observed: "Steve had a fantastic sense of humour and will be tremendously missed. If he could have scripted it, it would have been that way - a fresh spring day, his son playing in the same team and a new ball in his hand."
WATKINS, DESMOND, died on February 9, 2006, aged 71. For more than 30 years "Watto" was the dressing-room attendant at Georgetown's Bourda ground, ministering to touring teams and also coaching.
WILLIAMS, NEIL FITZGERALD, died on March 27, 2006. He was 43, and had contracted pneumonia after suffering a stroke in his native St Vincent. "Nellie" Williams was a fast-medium bowler with a languid approach and supple delivery, and his away-swinger, when he got it right, was a fearsome proposition that accounted for a high proportion of his 675 first-class wickets. He was part of the Middlesex side which won four Championship titles before he moved to Essex in 1995. It included a number of West Indian-born players - Williams, Roland Butcher, Norman Cowans, Wayne Daniel and Wilf Slack - affectionately known as "The Jackson Five" by their team-mates. Some people felt that the soft-spoken, God-fearing Williams (who refused to play on Sundays when he first joined the MCC cricket staff, preferring to go to church) was just too nice to be a successful fast bowler, but he was hostile enough when the mood took him, as when he took eight for 75 (12 in the match) against Gloucestershire at Lord's in 1992. His one Test cap had come two years before, against India at The Oval, after Chris Lewis withdrew on the morning of the match with a migraine. Moving the ball more than the other bowlers, according to Wisden, Williams took two wickets - the prize pair of Mohammad Azharuddin and Sachin Tendulkar - but made more impression with the bat, scoring 38 after going in as night-watchman. "He could always swing the ball," said John Emburey, his county colleague, "though sometimes a little too early. He had deceptive pace and a surprisingly skiddy bouncer. There was a lot of natural talent." Williams was fallible as a catcher, and was regarded as being less than robust, both physically and mentally - he was a player who needed geeing up, not bawling out. Though he went to secondary school in London, he was more a Vincentian than a Londoner, and always planned to return to the island. However, he ran into financial problems over a house being built for him there, and had to return to play for Cornwall in 2000 for some extra cash. But he did go back; when he died, he was coach of the island's Academy for Kids. WILSON, BRUCE, who died of cancer on January 3, 2006, aged 64, was one of Australia's best journalists and a foreign correspondent for the Melbourne Herald, and associated papers, for more than 40 years. He covered more than 30 wars and several Ashes series, and was the quintessential hard-bitten foreign correspondent of legend, with an unerring eye for the story, the nearest bar and a companionable argument. He wrote vividly and trenchantly about cricket, as on everything else, including two Cricketer of the Year pieces for Wisden: on Glenn McGrath and, just before he died, Ricky Ponting.
WILSON, DAVID CLEMENT, died on July 19, 2005, aged 88. A fast-medium bowler, he played nine matches for Cambridge University in 1938 and 1939, without winning a Blue: his best bowling figures were five for 81 for a combined Oxbridge side on tour in Jamaica in August 1938. His father, the Rev. Clem Wilson, and his uncle, Rockley, both played for England.
WILSON, EDWARD HICKS, MBE, died on June 16, 2005, aged 85. Durhamborn Ted Wilson was a much-travelled adventurer who played for Uganda - captaining them against the first MCC side to tour East Africa, led by Freddie Brown in 1957-58 - before moving to Hong Kong. There, he led the national side on several tours, before becoming the president of the Hong Kong Cricket Association, and representing them at several ICC meetings at Lord's. The annual trophy for Hong Kong schools, founded in 1976-77, bears his name. On retirement, Wilson returned to England, and became a regular watching Oxford in The Parks.
The following, whose deaths were noted during 2006, played in fewer than ten first-class matches. Further details can be found on our website, www.cricinfo.com (enter the player's name in the search box on the home page), or at www.cricketarchive.co.uk.
Bhajekar, Ramakrishna Viswananth .12.2006 88 Maharashtra Scored 120 in the 1940-41 Ranji Trophy semi-final against Northern India.
Blundell, Norman Charles 9.12.2006 88 Victoria Accurate leg-spinner who later did commentaries for ABC Radio.
Brain, Roy Albert 7.6.2006 79 Tasmania In his second and final match, stumped MCC's Tom Graveney in 1958-59.
Carter, Edwin Lewis 28.5.2006 81 Victoria Leg-spinner who helped the 1965-66 MCC tourists get used to wrist-spin.
Clarke, Graham Cornelius 21.1.2006 66 South Australia Left-arm seamer who played six state matches; 724 wickets in 25 years of Adelaide grade cricket.
Cole, Derek Henry 7.4.2006 81 Devon Captained Minor Counties v 1967 Pakistanis and 1968 Australians: 8,153 runs and 450 wickets for Devon.
du Chateau, Victor Henry ("Dutchy") 26.9.2005 94 Wellington Co-founded Wellington's Wanderers club, and remained its patron until his death.
Filgas, Frank Miroslav 23.2.2006 79 Ireland Kept wicket in his only first-class match, against Scotland in 1948.
Forword, Ramsey Lovell 21.3.2006 78 Eastern Province Took six wickets in his first match, including both Western Province openers twice.
Franklin, Charles David("Beb") 14.7.2006 86 Rhodesia Made 101* v Transvaal in 1949-50: also played tennis for Rhodesia and hockey for South Africa.
Goodwin, Patrick Joseph (Jo) 2.5.2006 80 umpire Stood in 14 first-class matches at Brisbane between 1959-60 and 1965-66.
Gracey, Peter Bosworth Kirkwood 13.9.2006 84 Oxford University Four matches for Oxford, but his Blues were for hockey and golf. Played 57 consecutive President's Putter tournaments.
Green, Jack Godfrey 13.9.2005 83 Victoria Scored 50 on debut v Tasmania: later captained the Melbourne Cricket Club's first team.
Laurie, John Christopher 13.5.2006 68 Border Economical medium-pacer whose three-match career included figures of 31-17-31-1 and 45-18-50-0.
Leather, Desmond Gerard Towlerton 19.5.2006 76 Rhodesia Bagged a pair in his only first-class match, v Worcestershire in 1964-65.
Leiper, John Morton (Jack) 17.7.2006 85 Essex Two matches in 1950: 44 v Somerset. His son, Bob, also played for Essex twice.
Mahony, Noel Cameron 28.12.2006 93 Ireland Pioneer of coaching in Ireland.
O'Connell, Thomas Reginald 17.1.2006 89 South Australia Played six matches at 19, but never appeared again. He became a Hansard reporter in the state parliament.
Page, Richard Kennett 27.7.2006 96 Army One first-class match in 1937. His uncle, A. J. L. Hill, played three Tests for England in 1895-96.
Pandit, Padmakar Govind 1.7.2006 71 umpire Stood in nine one-day internationals in India in the 1980s.
Patwardhan, Gajanan Sadashiv 12.9.2006 82 Maharashtra His final first-class wicket was that of Frank Lowson during MCC's 1951-52 tour of India.
Scott, Andrew William 3.9.2006 46 Durham Australian who opened the bowling in the upset NatWest Trophy win at Derby in 1985.
Shelton, Herbert John (Jack) 1.6.2006 82 Tasmania Scored 49 in his first match, against Freddie Brown's 1950-51 MCC tourists.
Shephard, Athol Lennard 2.2.2006 85 Tasmania Six of his seven matches were against Victoria. He made his debut on Christmas Day, 1948.
Smith, Aubrey Bernard 3.8.2006 93 Natal Scored 22 in his only appearance, in 1937-38. His brother, Francis, also played for Natal.
Stewart, David 2.5.2006 81 Scotland Seam bowler who took two for 12 in 11 overs in his only first-class match, v Ireland in 1950.
Street, Lawrence Charles 23.4.2004 84 Warwickshire Took two early wickets on debut, as Somerset were shot out for 55 in 1946 - but only one more.
Thomas, Frederick Oswald 20.2.2003 85 Scotland Stumped in both innings of his only first-class match; president of the Scottish Cricket Union in 1987.
Treadaway, Leslie George 2.9.2006 85 Western Province Primarily a leg-spinner, he made 50 v Natal in 1953-54. His brother, Wallace, played for Border.
Watters, John Charles 2.8.2006 81 Victoria Opened the batting in his only first-class match, against Tasmania at the MCG in 1949-50.
Weir, Alexander John 4.7.2006 85 South Australia Played one Shield game, against Western Australia in 1949-50.