A look at the careers of Sir Clyde Walcott, Roy Fredericks

Guyana Chronicle
April 16, 1999

THE Guyana Cricket Board's second induction ceremony, to honour outstanding former Guyanese cricketers and administrators into its Hall of Fame, will be held at the Georgetown Cricket Club (GCC) ground, Bourda, on Monday.

Those to be honoured are Basil Butcher, Roy Fredericks, Lance Gibbs, Rohan Kanhai, Clive Lloyd, Joe Solomon, Sir Clyde Walcott and Kenny Wishart.

Today, Chronicle Sports takes a look at the career of two of the stalwarts.

Sir Clyde Walcott

Sir Clyde Walcott was a hard-hitting batsman and run-machine in the 1940s and 1950s.

Standing over 6 feet, Walcott was the tallest and also the youngest of the `three Ws' - the other members of the famous trio being Sir Frank Worrell and Sir Everton Weekes.

"He quickly won a reputation as one of the hardest hitters of the ball in the game, and delighted in driving off the back foot," according to the book "100 Great West Indian Test Cricketers" by Bridgette Lawrence with Reg Scarlett.

"His square-cut was second to none and he excelled at the hook shot, a stroke he often played standing on tiptoe, as he took full advantage of his height."

Despite his size, Walcott was a nimble wicketkeeper and unchallenged in the position until a back injury forced him to give up.

Walcott saved his most memorable assault for the visit to the Caribbean by the Australians in 1955, by which time he was widely acknowledged as the best batsman in the world.

"He scored five centuries in three Tests to wipe out memories of his traumas in Australia four years earlier," the cricket book said. "Against one of the best bowling attacks of all time, Walcott hit the then record West Indian aggregate for a series of 827 runs at 82.70."

Career details:

Born: January 17, 1926

Role: Right-hand batsman, wicketkeeper, medium-pace bowler

Clubs: Barbados, Guyana, Lancashire League

First-class record: [1941-63] 11,820 runs (56.55) including 40 centuries, 175 catches and 33 stumpings, and 35 wickets (36.25).

Tests: 44

Test debut: v England 1948

Test runs: 3,798 (56.68); HS: 220 v England, Bridgetown, 1954

Test catches: 53; Test stumpings: 11

Tours: India 1948-49; England 1950; Australia and New Zealand 1951-52; England 1957.

ROY Clifton Fredericks

Roy Ferdericks was a small but very tough left-handed opening batsman of high class who hit the ball exceptionally hard, an occasional slow left-arm bowler and a brilliant close fielder, especially on the leg-side.

Both dashing and dependable he hit 26 fifties and eight centuries in his 59 Tests between 1968 and 1977. He played for Glamorgan between 1971 and 1973, scoring 1,377 runs (45.90) in his first season of county cricket, and in his second sharing a record opening stand of 330 with Alan Jones against Northants at Swansea when Fredericks scored 228 not-out.

He had a tendency to have inspired bursts of form as when he hit two hundreds in a match against MCC for Guyana in 1973/4, a feat he had already achieved against Barbados in 1966/7.

He toured Australasia in 1968/9 and 1975/6, England in 1969, 1973, 1975 (for the Prudential Cup) and 1976, and India, Pakistan and Sri Lanka in 1974/5.

From his first tour of Australia and New Zealand in 1968/9 when he made 1,131 runs, he never had a bad tour or an unsuccessful series, although he had to wait until 1972 and the first Test at Kingston to record his maiden Test century, 163 against New Zealand. A score of 150 against England at Edgbaston in 1973 was followed by two hundreds against India, at Calcutta and Bombay, and then in 1974/5 came one of the great innings of Test history.

On the fast pitch at Perth, the West Indies, already a Test down in the series, batted first against the all-conquering combination of Dennis Lillee and Jeff Thomson supplemented by Walker, Gilmour, Mallett and Ian Chappell. At lunch, following a blistering assault by Fredericks, the West Indies had scored 130 for one in 14 eight-ball overs!

Fredericks reached his hundred before lunch, in four minutes under two hours, off only 71 balls, with a six and 18 fours, and when he was out just after tea he had scored 169 out of 258.

In such moods there was no stopping this pocket Hercules, who played every shot from the late cut to the leg-glance with immense gusto.

Test matches (59): 4,334 runs (42.49) including 8 centuries, 7 wickets (78.28) and 62 catches.