Jim Smith (cricketer)
|Batting style||Right-hand bat|
|Bowling style||Right-arm fast|
|Test debut||8 January 1935 v West Indies|
|Last Test||24 July 1937 v New Zealand|
|Source: [CricketArchive], 30 May 2010|
Known as "Big Jim", Smith joined the MCC ground staff in 1926 and played for Wiltshire until 1933. He qualified for Middlesex in 1934 and took 172 wickets at 18.88 to finish 6th in the bowling averages in his debut season. He was selected for the 1934–35 MCC tour of the West Indies on the strength of this performance and played in every Test there. On debut, he took five wickets in the second innings in Bridgetown. He also appeared for England against New Zealand at Old Trafford in 1937. Smith only batted 10 times in Tests, but until his last innings he never batted in the same position in two successive innings. During his brief career he batted at numbers 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 8, 9 (twice) and 10 (twice).
In 1935, Smith was elected one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year for his achievements in the 1934 season.
A six foot four inch fast bowler, Smith's accuracy and appetite for hard work earned him 676 career wickets at 17.75 before the onset of World War II effectively ended his career.
Although primarily a fast bowler, Smith earned a reputation as a big-hitting tail-ender. In 1938, he scored a half-century in just 11 minutes against Gloucestershire at Bristol, the fastest genuine fifty on record. Previously, in 1935, he had scored 50 in 14 minutes against Kent while his sole first-class century, an unbeaten 101, was scored in 81 minutes, also against Kent. Another achievement was being credited by some with the biggest six in history, at Lord's in 1937, when he played a shot that cleared the Old Grandstand on the north side of the ground.
His brother, William, also played first-class cricket.
- "1st Test: West Indies v England at Bridgetown, Jan 8-10, 1935". espncricinfo. Retrieved 2011-12-18.
- Walmsley, Keith (2003). Mosts Without in Test Cricket. Reading, England: Keith Walmsley Publishing Pty Ltd. p. 457. ISBN 0947540067.
- Williamson, Martin. "The ultimate slogger". www.ESPNCricinfo.com. Retrieved 14 April 2013.
- Bearshaw, Brian (1986). The Big Hitters. England: Queen Anne Press. p. 199. ISBN 0356106845.