Tom Taylor (Yorkshire cricketer)

Tom Taylor (Yorkshire cricketer)

Infobox Old Cricketer

nationality = English
country = England
country abbrev = Eng
picture = Cricket_no_pic.pngname = Tom Taylor
batting style = Right-handed batsman
bowling style = N/A
FCs = 130
FC runs = 5,968
FC bat avg = 32.08
FC 100s/50s = 13/33
FC top score = 156
FC balls = 0
FC wickets = 0
FC bowl avg = N/A
FC 5s = 0
FC 10s = 0
FC best bowling = N/A
FC catches/stumpings = 86/6
debut date = May 24
debut year = 1897
last date = August 29
last year = 1906
source = CricketArchive

Tom Taylor (in full Tom Launcelot Taylor; born May 25, 1878, Headingley, Leeds Yorkshire, England; died March 16, 1960, Leeds, Yorkshire, England), was a major contributor to Yorkshire's brilliant run of County Championship success between 1900 and 1902 under Lord Hawke. After Stanley Jackson, Taylor was the best amateur batsman to play for Yorkshire and his loss to his engineering business after the 1902 season was a major cause of Yorkshire's fall from invincibility in the following seasons.

It is likely that Taylor would have received England honours had he been able to keep up the game, for he was chosen as 12th man in the rain-ruined Lord's Test match in 1902. Taylor was a fleet-footed and extremely sound middle order batsman, who was especially strong against slow bowling on the many difficult pitches experienced in Yorkshire. Against fast bowling he was not as certain.

Taylor began his career as a batsman and wicket-keeper for Uppingham School and a brilliant 100 not out against Repton in 1896 gave him a reputation as the best public school batsman in England at the time - a claim amply justified by his average of 84 that year. The following year he went up to Cambridge University. Though he played only one match, the following year he played regularly, but was disappointing considering his school reputation and was played for his wicket-keeping, which was never required when he joined Yorkshire.

It was his century against the Australians in 1899 that made critics note that Taylor's talent was for real, and the following year, in his last year at University, he did so well for Yorkshire that he was named as a "Cricketer of the Year" by "Wisden", reaching 1000 runs for the first time and playing for the Gentlemen at Scarborough. The following year, Taylor established himself as one of Yorkshire's best batsmen, with a superb 44 on an impossibly treacherous wicket at Leyton (where no other batsman reached "15") showing him one of the best batsmen on a bad wicket.

In 1902, Taylor batted so well on a succession of difficult pitches that he scored an impressive 1567 runs, including a century for the Gentlemen at Scarborough, and superb innings against Derbyshire and Leicestershire on soft pitches. He was Yorkshire's leading batsman that season, and it came as a shock when, after brief tours of Australia and New Zealand that winter, Taylor stayed in Japan during 1903. Yorkshire's batting in that summer really showed what Taylor meant to them on soft or treacherous pitches, and, when he returned to England in 1904, he devoted so much time to his engineering business that he could never spare any time for three-day cricket apart from July and August 1906. His lack of practice clearly showed in thirteen matches played in those months: his average was a very modest 21 and he only twice reached fifty. Yet, there is little doubt Taylor would still have been of value to Yorkshire could he have spared some time for cricket, especially in wet summers.

In 1927, Taylor was granted Life Membership by the Yorkshire County Cricket Club along with Stanley Jackson, and from 1948 until his death in 1960 he was President of the Yorkshire club. Besides his cricketing ability, Taylor also played tennis and field hockey.

External links

* [ First-class batting record]

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