Wisden Cricketer / Players / Walter Keeton

Walter Keeton      

Full name William Walter Keeton

Born April 30, 1905, Shirebrook, Derbyshire

Died October 10, 1980, Forest Town, Nottinghamshire (aged 75 years 163 days)

Major teams England, Nottinghamshire

Batting style Right-hand bat

Batting and fielding averages
Mat Inns NO Runs HS Ave 100 50 6s Ct St
Tests 2 4 0 57 25 14.25 0 0 0 0 0
First-class 397 657 43 24276 312* 39.53 54 119 76 0
Bowling averages
Mat Inns Balls Runs Wkts BBI BBM Ave Econ SR 4w 5w 10
Tests 2 - - - - - - - - - - - -
First-class 397 164 103 2 2/16 51.50 3.76 82.0 0 0
Career statistics
Test debut England v Australia at Leeds, Jul 20-24, 1934 scorecard
Last Test England v West Indies at The Oval, Aug 19-22, 1939 scorecard
Test statistics
First-class span 1926-1952
Profile

Wisden obituary
William Walter Keeton, who died on October 9, 1980, aged 75, was a great servant of Nottinghamshire and one of the many candidates for a place in the England side as an opening bat in the years immediately before the Second World War. In fact he played in only two Tests, v Australia at Leeds in 1934 and v West Indies at The Oval in 1939. Probably most people would reckon that the selectors were right, that he was a good county player but not quite Test class. He had a sound defence, was a fine cutter and also had a good cover drive, but what spectators will chiefly remember is his leg-side play and in particular his mastery of that difficult and neglected stroke, the on-drive. Moreover he was, as befitted a first-class soccer forward, a fine outfield. He first played for his county in 1926, but the Nottinghamshire batsmen of that era retained their skill almost undiminished to a patriarchal age and it was not until 1931 that the premature death of Whysall secured him a serious trial. He made the most of his opportunity, scoring his thousand runs with an average of 30 and making two centuries. For most of the season he had the valuable experience of opening with George Gunn. From then for twenty years his career was interrupted only by illness or injuries, of which he had more than his share; in January 1935 he was knocked down by a lorry and was lucky to be able to resume his place in the side late in June. But despite all this and the loss of six seasons in the War he reached his thousand runs on twelve occasions and made 54 hundreds. His highest score, 312 not out in seven and threequarter hours v Middlesex at The Oval ( Eton were playing Harrow at Lord's) in 1939, remains the only innings of 300 ever played for Nottinghamshire, and he is also one of the few batsmen to have scored a century against every county. From 1932 to 1948 his regular partner was that eccentric player, Charlie Harris, and a notable pair they were. On 45 occasions they put up three figures, fourteen times they exceeded 150 and five times 200. Twice they put up 100 in each innings. Their highest stand was 277 v Middlesex at Trent Bridge in 1933. Keeton was still as good as ever after the War, but Hutton and Washbrook had now established themselves as England's opening pair. As late as 1949 he scored 2,049 runs with an average of 55.37. In 1951, at 46, he lost his regular place in the side, but against Kent at Trent Bridge helped Simpson to put on 269 for the first wicket. A single match in 1952 concluded his career. In all he had scored 24,276 runs with an average of just under 40. After retiring he had a sports shop for a time and later worked for the National Coal Board.
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Aug 1939

Len Hutton and Walter Keeton walk out to open for England, England v West Indies, 3rd Test, The Oval, August 1939

Len Hutton and Walter Keeton walk out to open for England

© The Cricketer International

Notes

Wisden Cricketer of the Year 1940

Country Fixtures Country Results
Derbyshire v Worcs at Derby - Aug 31-Sep 3
Derbyshire 32/0
Durham v Notts at Chester-le-Street - Aug 31-Sep 3
Durham 49/2
Hampshire v Leics at Southampton - Aug 31-Sep 3
Leics 66/3
Kent v Glamorgan at Canterbury - Aug 31-Sep 3
Glamorgan 7/3
Lancashire v Yorkshire at Manchester - Aug 31-Sep 3
Lancashire 52/2
Middlesex v Warwickshire at Lord's - Aug 31-Sep 3
Warwickshire 52/0
Somerset v Northants at Taunton - Aug 31-Sep 3
Somerset 36/2
Surrey v NZ A at The Oval - Aug 31-Sep 2
Surrey 30/3
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