Full name Alan Fairbairn
Born January 25, 1923, Winchmore Hill, Middlesex
Died March 7, 2005 (aged 82 years 41 days)
Major teams Middlesex
Batting style Left-hand bat
Education Haileybury College
|First-class span||1947 - 1951|
Alan Fairbairn had an extraordinary start to his first-class career in 1947, hitting centuries in both his first two matches - a feat unmatched in English cricket - as Middlesex surged to the Championship title. An amateur left-hander from Southgate who had captained Haileybury College in 1941, Fairbairn marked his first-class debut, against Somerset at Taunton, with 108 as Middlesex - without Denis Compton, Bill Edrich and Jack Robertson, all playing in the Gentlemen v Players match - fell just 25 runs short of a stiff target of 359. Ten days later, with Compton and Edrich playing in a Test against South Africa (the chief sufferers of their record-breaking season), Fairbairn added 110 not out to set up a big win over Nottinghamshire at Trent Bridge, stroking 17 fours in little more than two hours at the crease. A knee injury restricted him to just two more appearances that season, although he was awarded his county cap, and the demands of business kept him out of full-time county cricket afterwards. Fairbairn played only six games in 1948, all of them at Lord's, and though he reappeared in several matches in 1951 he could add only a solitary half-century to those two early hundreds. He was also a noted squash player, winning the British Amateur Championship in 1952 and 1953.
Wisden Cricketers' Almanack obituary
FAIRBAIRN, ALAN, who died on March 7, 2005, aged 82, hit centuries in the first two matches of his first-class career - a feat unmatched in English cricket - as Middlesex surged to the Championship title in 1947. An amateur left-hander from Southgate, Fairbairn marked his first-class debut, against Somerset at Taunton, with 108 as Middlesex fell just 25 runs short of a target of 359. Ten days later, Fairbairn added 110 not out in barely two hours to set up a big win over Nottinghamshire. Bill Edrich wrote at the time that he might be "a Frank Woolley of the future" - but a knee injury restricted him to just two more appearances that season, although he was awarded his county cap. Thereafter, he concentrated on business and appeared infrequently. He was British amateur squash champion in 1952 and 1953.
Also: the highest by a No. 8 in ODIs, and the highest totals in ten-wicket wins
He understands the Indian mentality better and doesn't have to deal with star players on the wane