Richard Hutton: 12 facts about England all-rounder who couldn’t escape shadow of his illustrious father

Born September 6, 1942, Richard Anthony Hutton is a former England cricketer who played as an all-rounder. On his 75th birthday, Suvajit Mustafi looks at 12 interesting facts about the older son of the legendary Len Hutton, whose career was shrouded by the immense stature of his father.

1. Cricket family: Len Hutton is one of the greatest cricketers ever seen and the pressure and expectations are obviously sky high if one happens to be his son. That was the case with Richard and he was brought up in a cricketing environment. Apart from his superstar father, his uncle from mother s side was Frank Dennis, a Yorkshire all-rounder. Richard s father-in-law was Somerset s Ben Brocklehurst and younger brother John played a First-Class game for Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC). His cousin Simon Dennis represented Glamorgan, Yorkshire and Orange Free State in over hundred First-Class games. . Later, both of Richard s son Ben and Oliver played First-Class cricket.

2. Growing up: Father Len was brought up in a working-class family but that wasn t the case with his sons. They went to the prestigious Repton School. Richard attended Christ’s College, Cambridge. He was awarded a blue at Cambridge.

3. First-Class debut: Before he turned 20, in May 1962, he made his First-Class debut for Cambridge University. Playing against Essex, he managed scores of 6 and 29, and picked up two wickets in the game.

4. Being under the microscope: As he was the son of the great Len Hutton, Richard s performances were closely monitored and every single failure was criticised and compared to that of his father.

5. Touring with EW Swanton s XI: He toured as a part of EW Swanton s XI in 1963-64 and played in Penang, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur, Hong Kong, and Bangkok. He also played a game in Eden Gardens against Indians XI.

6. Opening the batting on Test debut: Richard made his Test debut at Lord s in June 1971, against the touring Pakistan side. He picked up the wickets of opener Aftab Gul and their star cricketer Mushtaq Mohammad. In the second innings, which was his maiden Test innings, he was sent to open the batting and he got a 58 not out.

7. Highest score in his last Test: The Oval Test of 1971 will be forever remembered by the Indian cricket fans. It was not only India s first Test win in England but also the victory gave them the series. Richard was one of the saving graces for England in that Test. He scored a fine 81 in the first innings and in the second innings he remained not out on 13, watching his partners fall like ninepins to the spin of Bhagwath Chandrasekhar. The score of 81 remained Richards s highest score in Test cricket and he never played a Test again.

8. Playing alongside the giants: Richard was a surprise choice for the World XI tour of Australia in 1971-72 and looked out of sorts in a team that had Garry Sobers, Clive Lloyd, Sunil Gavaskar, Graeme Pollock, Zaheer Abbas and others. He scored 88 runs at 8.8 and picked up seven wickets at 52.85.

9. Fall-out with Geoffrey Boycott: He and co-Yorkshireman Geoffrey Boycott had a major fall-out and developed a dislike for each other. As a captain, neither did Boycott play him in more games but when included, Richard did not get enough chances to bowl. Eventually, Richard quit the club.

10. Playing in South Africa and business: After quitting Yorkshire, he concentrated on his business and later played in South Africa for Transvaal. He just featured in two games and that was the end of his First-Class career.

11. Editor: Richard later went on to be the editor of The Cricketer.

12. Elder son Ben: His elder son Ben was born in South Africa. Like his grandfather Len, Ben too went on to lead a County side. He led Middlesex and played a total of 110 First-Class games.

(Suvajit Mustafi consumes cricket for lunch, fiction for dinner and munches numerous other snacks throughout the day. Yes, a jack of several trades, all Suvajit dreamt of was being India s World Cup winning skipper but ended up being a sports writer, author, screenwriter, director, copywriter, graphic designer, sportsmarketer , strategist, entrepreneur, philosopher and traveller. Donning so many hats, it s cricket which gives him the ultimate high and where he finds solace. He can be followed at @RibsGully and rivu7)