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Frank Worrell

Sir Frank Worrell
Personal information
Full name
Frank Mortimer Maglinne Worrell
Born(1924-08-01)1 August 1924
Bridgetown, Saint Michael, Colony of Barbados
Died13 March 1967(1967-03-13) (aged 42)
Kingston, Jamaica
NicknameTae, Flanny
BowlingSlow left arm orthodox
Left arm medium
RelationsLarry Worrell (cousin)
International information
National side
Test debut (cap 61)11 February 1948 v England
Last Test26 August 1963 v England
Domestic team information
Career statistics
Competition Test First-class
Matches 51 208
Runs scored 3,860 15,025
Batting average 49.48 54.24
100s/50s 9/22 39/80
Top score 261 308*
Balls bowled 7,141 26,979
Wickets 69 349
Bowling average 38.72 28.98
5 wickets in innings 2 13
10 wickets in match 0 0
Best bowling 7/70 7/70
Catches/stumpings 43/– 139/–
Source: CricketArchive, 8 January 2009

Sir Frank Mortimer Maglinne Worrell (1 August 1924 – 13 March 1967), sometimes referred to by his nickname of Tae, was a West Indies cricketer and Jamaican senator. A stylish right-handed batsman and useful left-arm seam bowler, he became famous in the 1950s as the second black captain of the West Indies cricket team. Along with Sir Everton Weekes and Sir Clyde Walcott, he formed what was known as "The Three Ws" of the West Indian cricket. He is the only batsman to have been involved in two 500-run partnerships.[1]

The Frank Worrell Trophy is awarded to the winner of the frequent Test series between Australia and West Indies

He spent some time studying economics and playing in England. A memorial service was held in his honour in Westminster Abbey, the first such honour for a sportsman.

In 2009, Worrell was inducted into the ICC Cricket Hall of Fame.[2] He is widely regarded as the Nelson Mandela of Cricket.[3]


Frank Worrell was born in Barbados, within a mile of its Test ground. He played first class cricket for Barbados when he first came to prominence. By 1947, his mother had moved to New York City, and his father was away at sea most of the time, and Worrell moved to Jamaica. Thereafter he played cricket for Jamaica.

As a player for West Indies, Worrell made his debut in 1947–48 versus the England team of Gubby Allen. Following this series he settled in England to play for Radcliffe, Lancashire in the Central Lancashire League and to read economics at Manchester University. He made his highest Test score of 261 against England at Trent Bridge in 1950, and was a Wisden Cricketer of the Year for 1951.

Following a successful campaign led by C. L. R. James, who was then editor of The Nation in Trinidad, the period of white Test captaincy in the West Indies came to an end. Worrell became the first black cricketer to captain the West Indies cricket team for an entire series, thus breaking the colour barriers then found in West Indian cricket.[4] He led the side on two particularly notable tours. The first was to Australia in 1960–61. Both Worrell and his opposing captain, Richie Benaud, encouraged their teams to play attacking cricket. The first Test of the series ended in a dramatic tie. Though West Indies lost the series 2–1, with one draw in addition to the tie, they took much credit for contributing to the series. Such was their performance and conduct on Australian soil that they were given a large ticker-tape parade in Australia at the end of their tour.

On 3 February 1962, Nari Contractor, the captain of the touring Indian team, received a career-ending head injury from a bouncer bowled by West Indies fast bowler Charlie Griffith.[5] Worrell was the first player from both sides to donate blood to the injured Contractor, which saved his life.

In 1963, West Indies toured England. They were again popular, and this time they also won the series 3–1, and it was West Indies' second series victory in England after their 3–1 win in 1950.[6][7]

Worrell retired after the West Indies–England series. When he left professional cricket, he became Warden of Irvine Hall at the University of the West Indies, and was appointed to the Jamaican Senate by Sir Alexander Bustamante. He strongly supported a closer political union between the nations of the Caribbean. He was knighted for his services to cricket in 1964.

Left to right: Ray Lindwall, Australian Prime Minister Robert Menzies, Lindsay Hassett, Frank Worrell.

Worrell managed the West Indies during the 1964–65 visit by Australia. He accompanied the team to India in the winter of 1966–67.

Worrell was the first West Indian to carry his bat in a Test innings.[8] It was while in India that he was diagnosed with leukaemia.

He died aged 42, a month after returning to Jamaica. A memorial service was held in his honour in Westminster Abbey, the first such honour for a sportsman, the next being Bobby Moore in 1993.



Since the 1960–61 series, the Frank Worrell Trophy is awarded to the winner of the Test series between Australia and West Indies.[9]


The Sir Frank Worrell Memorial Ground, also or formerly known as University of West Indies Ground, is a cricket stadium in Saint Augustine, Trinidad and Tobago.[10] The Sir Frank Worrell Cricket Ground at the universities Mona Campus in Jamaica in also named for Worrell.[11]


In March 2002, "to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the Central Bank of Barbados" a limited-edition $5 banknote bearing Worrell's likeness was issued.[12]


In 1988, he was celebrated on the $2 Barbadian stamp alongside the Barbados Cricket Buckle.

University halls and lecture

The annual Sir Frank Worrell Memorial Lecture was instituted at University of the West Indies (UWI) Cave Hill Campus, Barbados by Professor Hilary Beckles.[13] The inaugural lecture, "Sir Frank and the rise of West Indies cricket" was delivered by Michael Manley in 1994.[14] Nearby one of the Halls of Residence is named after him.

Memorial Committee

In 2007, the Sir Frank Worrell Memorial Committee was founded to mark the 40th anniversary of his death (which coincided with the opening match – West Indies vs. Pakistan, Sabina Park, Jamaica of the ICC Cricket World Cup hosted across the islands).

Blood donation drives

In 2009, the Sir Frank Worrell Memorial Blood Drive was begun in Trinidad and Tobago, inaugurated by the 74-year-old Nari Contractor,[15] to whom Worrell had donated blood after his head injury in 1962.[16] In remembrance of this, the Cricket Association of Bengal organises a blood donation drive on this day every year,[17] and the day is commemorated as Sir Frank Worrell Day in the state of West Bengal in India.

Food outlet branding

Tibb's Frankie, since 1969, is an Indian-centred chain of over 150 stuffed, crispened pita outlets named after him as the founder's favourite cricketer; its signature and custom wraps are "Frankies". An outlet operates in the O2 Business Tower in Dubai.[18]

Films and Entertainment

He also made a special guest appearance in the 1967 Bollywood film Around the World. He had a small role with actor Om Prakash and Mehmood.

See also

Footnotes and citations

  1. ^ "500-run partnerships". Archived from the original on 19 November 2011. Retrieved 29 October 2017.
  2. ^ Cricinfo (2 January 2009). "ICC and FICA launch Cricket Hall of Fame". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 19 July 2019.
  3. ^ "Pt 4 - 'The Nelson Mandela of cricket' | Legends of Cricket | Video |". Cricinfo. Retrieved 5 November 2020.
  4. ^ Potted biography of James, including his part in getting Worrell made captain
  5. ^ Contractor has said: "It was as Griffith was to deliver the fourth ball of his second over that somebody opened a window in the pavilion. There were no sight screen at that time and my 100 percent concentration wasn’t on that delivery. I saw it just inches away before it hit me. But it isn’t true that I ducked." Quoted in Arzan Sam Wadia, "Nari Contractor: ‘I don’t mind living it all over again’", Parsi Khabar, 7 March 2009.
  6. ^ Wisden Cricketers' Almanack, 1962 edition, "West Indies in Australia, 1960–61"
  7. ^ Wisden Cricketers' Almanack, 1964 edition, "West Indies in England, 1963"
  8. ^ "Records - Batsmen carrying their bat in Test matches". ESPN Cricinfo. Retrieved 3 November 2016.
  9. ^ Report announcing the Frank Worrell Trophy, Glasgow Herald, 10 February 1961.
  10. ^ "West Indies / Grounds: Sir Frank Worrell Memorial Ground". ESPNcricinfo. Retrieved 19 December 2012.
  11. ^ "The Frank Worrell Cricket Ground". Retrieved 26 April 2022.
  12. ^ "Barbados 30th anniversary 5-dollar commemorative confirmed", Banknote News, 6 March 2011; quoting Marion Williams, Governor, 20 March 2002.
  13. ^ Boria Majumdar, J. A. Mangan (eds), Cricketing Cultures in Conflict: World Cup 2003, Routledge, 2004, p. 97.
  14. ^ Hilary McD. Beckles, The Development of West Indies Cricket, Vol. 1: The Age of Globalization, Pluto Press, 1998, p. 51.
  15. ^ Clayton Murzello, "50 years on, Nari recalls near fatal blow", Mid-Day, 20 March 2012.
  16. ^ A. C. de Silva, "Frank Worrell donated blood to save Indian Nari Contractor's life", Archived 4 December 2014 at the Wayback Machine Sunday Observer (Sri Lanka), 3 January 2010.
  17. ^ "Ali Bacher signatory for CAB blood donation camp", The Indian Express, 30 January 2010.
  18. ^ "Tibbs Frankie launches in Dubai". 24 May 2016.

Further reading

Preceded byGerry Alexander West Indies Test cricket captains 1960/1 - 1963 Succeeded byGarfield Sobers
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Frank Worrell
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