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Sir Clyde, A Legend And A Thorough Gentleman

By Ricardo Inniss

A day after putting together an article on the legendary three Ws, this writer read of the passing of Sir Clyde Leopold Walcott, at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital, in Barbados, on Saturday August 26.

My first meeting with Sir Clyde, was back in the late forties when we were both members of the Spartan Cricket Club, and we practiced together. To stand at mid-off or mid-on for Sir Clyde, took a lot of courage, as off the back foot his drives scorched the grass and came at you with rocket like speed and force.

He was one of the best players off the back foot and the best bad-wicket batsman this writer has ever seen. Overall, he was a great batsman, and for his size, some six feet two inches, and looking like a heavy-weight boxer, he was as supple as they come behind the wicket. When the occasion arose he could also use the new ball cleverly.

Speaking soon after his death, here’s some of what Barbados’ Prime Minister Owen Arthur had to say: “ Sir Clyde’s contribution was equally sterling on and off the field “continuing Arthur went on to say,“ we should also not forget that Sir Clyde’s contribution was not only in relation to cricket on the field but he was one of the most outstanding cricket administrators of all times. I believe he rose to the highest level in the administration of cricket globally, tremendous achievement.“

“We must never also forget in these CSME days that he was also a person who made a tremendous contribution not only to the development of the Guyanese society but Guyanese batsmanship as it came to be reflected in the modern times (Rohan) Kanhai, (Basil) Butcher and others- was due in large measure to the tremendous role that Sir Clyde played in helping to develop Guyanese Cricket.“

I will miss chatting with Sir Clyde, whenever I visit Barbados. To lady Walcott and the rest of the family I Offer my deepest sympathy.

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