Jim Laker's best known feat was the unequalled total of nineteen wickets in a match, in 1956 against Australia at Old Trafford, an accomplishment that demonstrated his dominance on a turning pitch. He was a fine exponent of the art of off spin bowling, varying pace, line and flight, and was quite capable of troubling batsmen on a wicket that offered little help. He was a reasonable batsman who did not sell his wicket cheaply, but never made many runs. He failed to find a regular place in the England team until 1956, after playing with little success against the 1948 Australians but took 63 wickets in 7 matches against the 1956 tourists. A Yorkshireman who played for Surrey, he later had a succesful career as a TV commentator.
(Article: Copyright © 1998 Dave Liverman)
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