John Neville Crawford
December 01, 1886, Cane Hill, Surrey
May 02, 1963, Epsom, Surrey, (aged 76y 152d)
Right hand Bat
Right arm Medium, Right arm Offbreak
John Neville "Jack" Crawford was one the best allrounders of his era, although he habitually played in spectacles. Son of the Rev. J. C. Crawford and nephew of Major F. F. Crawford, both of whom played for Kent, he created such a reputation as a batsman and a bowler of varying pace at Repton that he was invited to play for Surrey in 1904 at the age of 17. He was an immediate allround success and he and H.C. McDonell bowled unchanged through both innings of Gloucestershire at Cheltenham, Crawford taking 10 for 78 and his fellow amateur 10 for 89.
Jack Crawford appeared regularly for Surrey from 1906 till 1909. Twice in succession he completed the cricketers' double and in 1908 failed to do so a third time by two wickets. During this period he made twelve appearances for England, going to South Africa in 1905-06 and to Australia in 1907-08, when he headed the Test bowling averages with 30 wickets for 24.79 runs each. After a mid-season dispute with Surrey in 1909 he settled in Australia, playing with distinction for South Australia and paying a visit to New Zealand with an Australian XI, in 1914. In the course of this tour he played an extraordinary innings in a two-day fixture with a South Canterbury XV at Temuka. Of a total of 922 for 9, he obtained 354 -- 264 of them from fourteen 6's and forty-five 4's -- in five and a half hours. He and Victor Trumper put on 298 in 69 minutes for the eighth wicket and he and Monty Noble at one point added 50 in nine minutes.
Crawford returned to England following the First World War and, the disagreement having been settled, played again for Surrey from 1919 till he retired in 1921. A hard-hitting batsman, he shared a match-winning stand of 96 in 32 minutes with Jack Hobbs against Kent in 1919 and the same season played what was described as the innings of his life. Going in at No. 8 against the Australian Imperial Forces side at the Oval, he hit 144 not out. When Tom Rushby, the last man, reached the wickets, Surrey needed 45 to avoid a follow-on; but Crawford attacked the bowling with such ferocity that 80 runs were added in 35 minutes. Rushby's share in this partnership amounted to two runs. Of Crawford, Wisden of the time recorded: The way in which he drove Gregory's fast bowling was magnificent. In all first-class cricket, Crawford hit 7,005 runs, average 30.19, dismissed 600 batsmen at a cost of 20.50 runs each and brought off 117 catches.
Wisden Cricketers' Almanack
Batting & Fielding