Kenneth Roy Rickards
August 22, 1923, Rollington Town, Kingston, Jamaica
August 21, 1995, Kingston, Jamaica, (aged 71y 364d)
Right hand bat
A forceful right-hand batsman whose opportunities at Test level for West Indies were limited by the considerable presence of the `Three Ws' in the middle order, Kenneth Roy Rickards died in Kingston, Jamaica on Aug 21, the day before his 72nd birthday.
Ken Rickards caught the selectors' eyes with 112 not out for Jamaica against Gubby Allen's 1947-48 MCC tourists. Chosen for the final Test of the fifth wicket. He was a late addition to the team for the 1948-49 tour of India, but, hampered by a bout of typhoid, failed to win a Test place. His 330 runs (33.67) on the tour included 99 ( run out) against West Zone at Poona.
Overlooked for the 1950 tour of England, Rickards hit 195 - a career-best - against British Guiana at Kingston in March 1951, and won a place on the following winter's tour of Australia. Once again he was disappointment, scoring just 245 runs (20.41) in all, and playing only in the fourth Test of a series which Australia won 4-1.
He was a league professional in England for a time, and made two first-class appearances here; for a Commonwealth XI against an England XI a Kingston-upon- Thames in 1952 (he made 69 and 26 not out), and for injury-hit Essex against a Commonwealth XI in 1953 ( Rickard's scored 12 and 13; Essex won despite Clyde Walcott's 115 for the visitors).
A public subscription in Jamaica raised enough to bring him home in time for the 1953-54 England tour, but innings of 75 and 35 in Len Hutton's team's first match against the island were followed by 0 and 1 in the second, and the West Indian selectors looked elsewhere. Rickards's two Tests had brought him 104 runs (34.67); in all firstclass cricket the made 2065 runs at 38.96.
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