Don Beard

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Don Beard
Don Beard2.jpg
Personal information
Full name Donald Derek Beard
Born (1920-01-14)14 January 1920
Palmerston North, Manawatu
Died 15 July 1982(1982-07-15) (aged 62)
Lancashire, England
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium
International information
National side
Test debut (cap 54) 8 February 1952 v West Indies
Last Test 9 March 1956 v West Indies
Career statistics
Competition Test First-class
Matches 4 66
Runs scored 101 2166
Batting average 20.19 22.10
100s/50s 0/0 0/9
Top score 31 81*
Balls bowled 806 19065
Wickets 9 278
Bowling average 33.55 21.58
5 wickets in innings 0 12
10 wickets in match 0 3
Best bowling 3/22 7/56
Catches/stumpings 2/- 50/-
Source: Cricinfo, 1 April 2017

Donald Derek Beard (14 January 1920, Palmerston North, Manawatu – 15 July 1982, Lancaster, England) was a New Zealand cricketer who played in four Tests from 1952 to 1956.

Early life and career[edit]

Don Beard grew up in the country near Palmerston North, cycling 15 miles a day to attend Palmerston North Boys' High School.[1] After teacher training in Auckland, he attended Victoria University in Wellington.

An accurate fast-medium bowler and useful lower-order batsman, Beard made his first-class debut for Wellington in 1945-46, but did not play again until the creation of the Central Districts team in 1950-51.

International career[edit]

In the 1951-52 Plunket Shield season he took 16 wickets at 27.25[2] and was selected for the two Tests against the touring West Indies side, taking four wickets.

He was a stalwart of the Central Districts team until 1960-61, taking 15 wickets and scoring 255 runs at 51.00[3] in 1953-54 when Central Districts won the Plunket Shield for the first time. He hit his top first-class score of 81 not out against Wellington during the season.[4] Dick Brittenden said Beard specialised in the sweep shot, and "would have made more runs in his colourful career had he not expended so much of his patience on bowling".[5]

He topped the bowling averages in the Plunket Shield in 1955-56 with 28 wickets at 10.64, "and 110 of his 217 overs were maidens".[6] After the visiting West Indies side won the first two Tests by an innings, they played Central Districts at Wanganui, where Beard top-scored in each innings, making 25 and 67, and took 3 for 52 and 2 for 59 (match figures of 50.1-20-111-5).[7] He returned to the Test team for the last two Tests, and played an important role in New Zealand's first-ever Test victory in the Fourth Test, making 31 and 6 not out and taking 1 for 20 and 3 for 22.[8] But that was his last Test.

Later career[edit]

His best innings and match figures came in 1956-57 against Otago in Dunedin, when he took 7 for 56 and 4 for 43 (match figures of 61.4-26-99-11) in a match that Otago nevertheless won.[9]

In 1961 he became principal of Te Aroha College in Waikato,[10] and played a few games for Northern Districts. In 1961-62 he took 5 for 70 and 6 for 71 against Auckland, and 5 for 60 and 3 for 36 in the next match against Wellington.[11] He played his last game in the 1964-65 season, just after turning 45.

He also played Hawke Cup cricket for Wanganui, Manawatu and Thames Valley.

He stood nearly six feet three inches tall.[12] He played basketball for New Zealand, was a notable amateur golfer, and played rugby union for Wellington, Wanganui (as captain) and North Island.[13]

He died in 1982 while on holiday in England after retiring as principal of Te Aroha College.[14]


  1. ^ R.T. Brittenden, New Zealand Cricketers, A.H. & A.W. Reed, Wellington, 1961, p. 20.
  2. ^ Bowling averages, Plunket Shield, 1951-52
  3. ^ Batting averages, Plunket Shield, 1953-54
  4. ^ Wellington v Central Districts, 1953-54
  5. ^ R.T. Brittenden, Great Days in New Zealand Cricket, A.H. & A.W. Reed, Wellington, 1958, p. 179.
  6. ^ Wisden 1957, p. 877.
  7. ^ Central Districts v West Indians, 1955-56
  8. ^ New Zealand v West Indies, Auckland 1955-56
  9. ^ Otago v Central Districts, 1956-57
  10. ^ Brittenden, New Zealand Cricketers, p. 23.
  11. ^ Wisden 1963, p. 956.
  12. ^ Brittenden, New Zealand Cricketers, p. 19.
  13. ^ Dick Brittenden, "Don Beard", Cricketer, November 1982, p. 68.
  14. ^ Brittenden, "Don Beard", p. 68.

External links[edit]