A tall man, Roy Tattersall delivered his off-spin with a high arm action, allowing generous fight and producing bounce. He did not impart much spin on the ball, and got his wickets through accuracy and variation of pace. He made his debut for Lancashire in 1948 and reached his peak in 1950, where in a superb season he took 193 wickets at an average of only 13.59. He was not selected for the Australian tour that winter, but was called up as a replacement after injury. He made his debut in the Fourth Test, taking three wickets in the first innings. He played a vital role in England's pivotal win in the Fifth Test, but surprisingly with the bat, not the ball. Never much of a hand with the bat, he came to the wicket as number 11 to join Reg Simpson with England holding only a narrow first innings lead. His careful defence allowed Simpson to play the major part of a 74-run last wicket partnership, and gave England the upper hand. The squad moved on to New Zealand where he took 6/44 in the Second Test, dismissing the first four batsman in order. The following summer he played against South Africa, and in a wonderful bowling performance took 13 wickets at Lord's, leading England to a 10-wicket win. He had a successful tour of India the following winter, with the highlight being 6/48 at Kanpur, but afterwards faded from England reckoning, playing just two more home Tests, as Laker took over as first choice off-spinner for England. His best bowling was in the 1953 Lancashire v Nottinghamshire match where he took 9 for 40, including the hat-trick and a spell where he took seven wickets in 19 balls. His modest ability with the bat, and in the field eventually led to him struggling to retain his place in the Lancashire XI, as his bowling seemed to lose his effectiveness. He continued to play until 1964, however, with mixed success, before retiring.
(Article: Copyright © 2001 Dave Liverman)
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