Jack Cheetham

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Jack Cheetham
Jack Cheetham 1952.jpg
Jack Cheetham in 1952
Personal information
Full name John Erskine Cheetham
Born (1920-05-26)26 May 1920
Cape Town, Cape Province
Died 21 August 1980(1980-08-21) (aged 60)
Johannesburg, Transvaal
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Legbreak
International information
National side
Career statistics
Competition Tests First-class
Matches 24 108
Runs scored 883 5697
Batting average 23.86 42.20
100s/50s 0/5 8/33
Top score 89 271*
Balls bowled 6 613
Wickets - 8
Bowling average - 47.00
5 wickets in innings - 0
10 wickets in match - 0
Best bowling - 2/38
Catches/stumpings 13/- 66/-
Source: Cricinfo

John Erskine "Jack" Cheetham (26 May 1920 in Cape Town, Cape Province – 21 August 1980 in Johannesburg, Transvaal) was a South African cricketer who played in 24 Tests from 1949 to 1955.

A middle-order batsman, Cheetham captained South Africa in 15 Test matches, and led the side to a drawn series in Australia in 1952-53, victories away and at home to New Zealand in the 1952-53 season and the 1953-54 season, and a narrow 3-2 defeat in England in 1955.

He played for Western Province from 1939-40 to 1954-55. Playing against Orange Free State in December 1951 he scored 271 not out,[1] which was the highest score ever made in the Currie Cup. Five days later Eric Rowan took the record from him, with 277 not out for Transvaal against Griqualand West.[2]

Rodney Hartman said of him: "Cheetham, the archetype gentleman, embodied the best virtues of sportsmanship and human endeavour, and was always held up as the ideal kind of man to captain his country."[3]

He served in the Middle East during the Second World War.[4] He graduated from the University of Cape Town and worked as an engineer for the construction company Murray & Roberts and later as a director. After he died, the company instituted the Jack Cheetham Memorial Award to recognise those who have done outstanding work promoting sport in disadvantaged communities.[5]


  • Caught by the Springboks (1953) (about the South African tour of Australia and New Zealand, 1952–53)
  • I Declare (1956) (about the South African tour of England, 1955)


  1. ^ Orange Free State v Western Province 1950-51
  2. ^ Wisden 1952, p. 890.
  3. ^ Rodney Hartman, Ali: The Life of Ali Bacher, Penguin, Johannesburg, 2006, p. 47.
  4. ^ ABC Cricket Book: South Africans Tour 1952-53, ABC, Sydney, 1952, p. 9.
  5. ^ Against the Odds Retrieved February 2, 2013.

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