Don Tallon

Don Tallon

Donald "Don" Tallon (17 February 1916 – 7 September 1984) was an Australian cricketer who played 21 Test matches as a wicket-keeper between 1946 and 1953. He was widely regarded by his contemporaries as Australia's finest ever wicket-keeper and one of the best in Test history, with an understated style, an ability to anticipate the flight, length and spin of the ball and an efficient stumping technique. Tallon toured England as part of Don Bradman's Invincibles of 1948 and was recognised as one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year in 1949 for his performances during that season. During his Test career, Tallon made 58 dismissals comprising 50 catches and 8 stumpings.

His early cricket was played in Bundaberg where he was selected to represent Queensland Country against the England cricket team during the infamous Bodyline tour. Aged 17, he made his first-class cricket debut for Queensland against Victoria in December 1933. By the 1935–36 season, Tallon was an established player and he topped the Queensland batting averages for the season, however he was a surprise non-inclusion for the 1938 Australian team to tour England. Following the Second World War and the retirement or unavailability of other candidates, he was finally given an opportunity to play Test cricket, making his debut against New Zealand in 1946 aged 30.

Following the Invincibles tour, poor health dogged Tallon, causing him to miss the 1949–50 tour of South Africa. He recovered his spot for the Ashes series in 1950–51, catching well but failing with the bat. Tallon missed selection for the 1951–52 Test season but recovered his spot for the 1953 Australian team to tour England. He played in the first Test before being replaced by Gil Langley, this time permanently. He retired from first-class cricket in 1953 and returned to Bundaberg, assisting his brother in running a corner store. He died in Bundaberg aged 68.

Read more about Don Tallon:  Early Years, First-class Debut, Pre-war Non-selection, World War II, Test Debut, Invincibles Tour, Later Career, Style, Outside Cricket, Test Match Performance

Famous quotes containing the word don:

    When you think of the huge uninterrupted success of a book like Don Quixote, you’re bound to realize that if humankind have not yet finished being revenged, by sheer laughter, for being let down in their greatest hope, it is because that hope was cherished so long and lay so deep!
    Georges Bernanos (1888–1948)