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CLEM-HILL RETIRES, Issue 15673, 11 December 1914
CRIOKFr AND CRICKETERS. INTERESTING CHAT. (By tho Adelaide correspondent of Melbourne ‘Winner.’) Clem Hill announced last month that he had decided to retire from cricket. It must not be thought for a moment that tho famoue left-hander really considers himself a “ ha* been ” bo far as the green sward is concerned, but there have been certain happenings^locally during tho last year or two which have hastened the end. Clem Hill has always said he would drop out while he felt in his prime, and would not wait until his xoiblic cricket showed that the eye had lost its k£ennces. We had a long talk about cricket and cricketers the day he made his decision public, but not once did he allow his thoughts or talk to turn to the petty spite which some of tho lenders of cricket in this State have shown towards him. Tho groat left-hander ha* a delightful and happy knack of reeling off incident after incident, and some day or other h© may ha p>-r----tuadfd to write for some nc.u:paper “ the notes on the match" which are always appended to each day’s cable play of an Australian tour in England, and if he does there is a treat in store. Tie has had 20 years of interstate and international cricket, and his impressions arc well worth quoting. —Trumpet Alone.— Just as wo were Wreaking away I shot a ©hence remark: “ Who is the best batsman you have ever seen, Clem?" and the reply cam© without the slightest hesitation: "One man stands alone. That is Tramper." “Above Ranjitsiuhji ?” “Certainly. Trumper is the champion on all wickets—fiery wickets, good, riiclrv, and slow—and that is the true test. P.aniilsinhji was wonderful on a good or fiery wicket, but on a tricky wicket there was no comparison hot ween the two." “You played against Dr W. G. Grace, of course,:’’—Yes; my first match in England in '96 was against Lord Sheffield's team at Sheffield Park. Grace, was captain of the side. I made about 20, I think, and can tell you I was pleased when the doctor cam© and spok© to me. If I kept on, ha said, I would make plenty of runs in England. I was only a ronngster at the time, and I can assure you I appreciated the encouragement.'’ " Comparing Trumper and Macartney ?’— " Great as Macartney is as a batsman. I would never compare him with Trumper. Of course, 1 have seen more of Victor than of Macartney. When you have been at one end of tho pitch, playing the bowling for all you know, and there, at the ether end, is your partner punching tho cover off the boll, you get a wonderful estimate of him. That it: how 1 have seen Trumper." “Of the other great batsmen ?”—“ Exclusive jpf Dr Grace, of course. T consider Ranjitsmjhi, MacLarcn, Jackson, Tyldesley. and Hobbs the best of English, batsmen. That is counting on test matches, and the standard of plnv there must be always the criterion. The best of Australians in test cricket were Darling. Noble. Armstrong, Duff. Gregory, and Bardslcy. Of tho all-round players. Armstrong and Noble were tho finest Australians of my time, and Hirst the best Englishman. Hirst's bowling wqj 50 per cent, better in England than in Australia. Of course, George Giffon was the. best of them all in his prime, but ho was ending his career when I entered' first class cricket. Of the Africans, Faulkner stands out as a batsman. When wc were in Africa in 1902. however, Sinclair was a magnificent hitter and a fine fellow. Talking of hard hitters, we must not forger Jack Lyons and Jessop, tho former hj scientific hard hitter, who seldom lifted a, ball; and the latter a pure and simplo ( hitter, getting his runs mainly through wonderful foot work." —The Bowlers.— “And the bowler*?” 1 continued.—"l always think Barnes,” and the left-hander added : "Ho keeps such a wonderful length, and is always varying his pace and flight. X’o matter how many runs you are getting, ho makes you play all the time, and ho can do a tremendous lot of .work. Of tho really fast, howlers, Ernie Jones /Australia) and Tom Richardson (England) stand alone, and probably the best Australian bowler on all wickets v.;as Hughie Trumble—always dependable’, with a long head, keeping a perfect length, and always working out a plan. Of the slow bowlers I suppose Lcn Braund was the bust I played against, and of the googlics Bosaiujuut and Hordern. Uosanquet, as the originator of the googly, was awkward when lie first tamo here, but lie did not keep the length of Hordern, who would have done great things for Australia if he had gone to England with an Australian Eleven." "(.'oncoming the baiting and howling of a few years Lack and that of to-day'?’’— '■ There is not a great deal of difference in the hatting, but there is a marked fall- j ing off in rile standard of the howling ! both in Australia, and England. Take a bowling side that we had in ISC2. There wore Noble. Annstroiig, Trumble. Jones, Howell, and Saunders. 'I hat's a variety for you—fast howler, left-handed, flow, i medium. Compare that wilh our howling I of io-dav or that 'of England, exclusive of Barnes. Jones we* a wonderful fieldsman and bowler. We had the earn-" compart- i merit travelling to England for the first I time, and Jonah was Vi rv sea-sick. One morning he woke mo up and said: ‘1 would just like to I';:’. >• o-v a un.iu.v. tile, ma'n wiio fire! put a > pk'kct ball into my i hand. 1 would kill him.’" —A Funny Came. Clem wont on to say that it was often remarked in ihe,, papers that cricket was a funny game, and ha added; “No one knows this better than th© players themselves. Why. the day I made rnr record score in college cricket, I missed the second ball, and it just whizzed past the stumps and shook the haiLs, but. they did not cam© off. In .Sydney on© year 1 nearly made a pair. Tommy M’Kihbon bowled me a long hop first ball, and I reckoned, on a certain four. Alf. Noble, however, sitting on my bat, darted and snapped tho hall up about six inches from the ground. Next innings tho second ball 1 got from Noble was a. pearl, and completely heat me. I waited for tho. rattle, and then I turned and found Jim Kell}’ looking in a. moat mystified way at th© stumps, and ha said : ‘ I could have sworn that hit the wicket.’ My luck was in, and 1 went on and collared something like 18 °- —Brilliant Cricket.— “ About tho most brilliant cricket ever I saw was at Manchester in 1902, when Trumper and Duff, on a wet wicket, made 140 in one, and a-half hours against England. That was the tour Haigh, who had been carrying all before him in county cricket, was given a trial in th© first teat at Lord’s. Archie MacLarcn told us beforehand that wo were, up against a world beater on bad wickets. Tho pitch that day was a ©hocking one, ©till Trumper and Duff got about S) off Haigh’s first two overs, and that was tho end of him us a test match bowler." —Disappointed.— ‘ ‘ Those Hire© memorable lest match innings—99, 98, and 97—must bo regarded as hard luck ones?"—“I was dreadfully disappointed. In the Melbourne match, where I got 99, Barnes bowled me a long hop, and I could have hit it for 4. Instead I tried to plav it quietly to third man for one, Tho oall hit the edge of the hat. and cocked up in tho slips. In the next match, tho ono in Adelaide, at 98, Braund bowled a bad which my first intention was to drive along the* ground for a couple. The ball dropped shorter than I expected. I quickly changed my mind, and tried a big hit. Jack Tyldesley caught it «a the •raling track. He laid in* sftsrwards tk»t he reeiwiied that nought «u the traek was net eut, and enly w«ut at ike had > for devilment. To his surprise, ho brought off a one-hand catch, and was amazed when be.saw mo making for the pavilion. —Big Hite.— “ Talking of big hits, I have often tried to hit sixes, hut have not got many. I only succeeded once in Melbourne, when, to my delight, I hit Warwick Armstronx into the public stand,"
—Best Innings.— “And your beat innings•?”—“Weil, 1 hardly know which I consider my 'best —the 188 in the teat.njatch in Melbourne, or the 119 in the test match at Sheffield. Perhaps the latter. Barnes had a wicket to help him, and waa bowline at his best. Joe Darling got a pair, and no did Jim Kelly. Old Jim was very funny. He kept hitting them hard to cover and midoff, and would not play one quietly and make a dash for a short one. —Stealing Bun*.— “ Iti this respect Harry Graham and Syd Gregory were wonderful. Once at the Oval when Richardson was bowling and ths wicketkeeper standing bade they got a run every time the ball was off the wicket. The result was the keeper had to come up to the wicket. It is easy to steal runs if batsmen make up their minds. They must understand _ each other, and, of course, must be good judges of a run. Gregory, Trumper," Duff, and Gchrs were all adepts." —Future.— "And your amusements in future;" — “ Watching the grand old game from the pavilion and playing bowls, tonnie, and golf." •
CLEM-HILL RETIRES, Issue 15673, 11 December 1914
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