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LEGENDS - Len Hutton
MA Karim
1/17/2006
 

          The year following his 364 he thrilled the crowds with his attacking play as the West Indian attack was taken apart as he scored 196 in the Lord's Test (the last 96 runs coming in 95 minutes). He finished the series on a high with 165 not out at the Oval.
Hutton learned from players such as Wilfred Rhodes, Herbert Sutcliffe, Bill Bowes, Hedley Verity and Brian Sellers.
From an early age his batting was skilful and showed ability to deal with all types of pitches - these were the days of uncovered wickets.
The early 1950's saw Hutton establish himself as England's batting rock, he alone mastered the West Indian spin duo of Ramadhin and Valentine, scoring 202 not out in the 1950 Oval Test. He was playing better than ever.
Perhaps his greatest achievement came in the 1953/54 series in the West Indies; England were 2-0 down in the Test series amid rancour and disputes. Hutton however showed his customary determination and resolve to lead England to victory in two Tests to draw the series 2-2.
However, the strain of leadership got to him. On the morning of the Melbourne Test in 1954-55 he refused to get out of bed and two of his leading players had to plead with him to come to the ground. His insensitive handling of Alec Bedser's exclusion from the second Test onwards attracted criticism. His health suffered and Hutton announced his retirement in 1955 succumbing to a bad back that had been bent over a cricket bat since childhood. A year later he was knighted for his services to cricket. (Concluded)

 

 
 

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