Andrew Ernest Stoddart (11 March 1863 – 4 April 1915) was an English sportsman who played international cricket for England cricket team, England, and rugby union for England national rugby union team, England and the British and Irish Lions, British Isles. He was a Wisden Cricketers of the Year, Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1893. He has the unique distinction in captaining England in three distinct sports; cricket, rugby union and Australian rules football.

Cricket career

Born in Westoe, South Shields, County Durham, England, he was the youngest son of a wine merchant, who moved the whole family to Marylebone, London, in 1877. Stoddart made his reputation in club cricket and was playing for Middlesex County Cricket Club, Middlesex by 1885. He was a flamboyant right-handed batsman and a right arm medium pace bowler. He played 16 Test cricket, Test matches captaining England in eight games of which he won three, lost four and drew one. His 173 at Melbourne Cricket Ground, Melbourne in 1894/95 was, for 80 years, the highest score by an England captain in Test cricket in Australia. Stoddart was also the first England captain to ask Australia to bat first, and the first to declare a Test innings closed. When he was 23, just a year after his First-class cricket, first-class debut, he was toying with the idea of giving up his amateur career in England to join his brother in Colorado. His plans changed when he took the record for the highest ever score in cricket at the time with an innings of 485 for Hampstead Cricket Club, Hampstead against Stoics on 4 August 1886. No declarations were allowed in the game and the Stoics, living up to their name, fielded all day without a chance to bat. Stoddart was seventh out, having batted six hours and ten minutes and clubbed one eight, three fives, and 64 fours. The runs were scored at a rapid pace - the score was 370 for 3 at lunch after 150 minutes of play. He made 207 for Hampstead in the next match three days later and on 9 August was playing for Middlesex and made 98, a grand total of 790 runs in a week. Stoddart was a man with a great zest for life in his younger days. He had danced then played cards till dawn before the Stoics game, batted almost through Hampstead's innings of 813, then played tennis, went to the theatre and turned in at 3 a.m. His next innings was against Kent when he posted his maiden first-class century in scoring 116. Seventy years later, David Frith (author), David Frith used ''My Dear Victorious Stod'' as the title of his acclaimed biography of Stoddart.

Rugby career

Stoddart also played ten rugby union internationals for England, and captained England four times. During his footballing career, Stoddart was at the forefront of many rugby firsts. In 1888, with fellow cricketers Alfred Shaw and Arthur Shrewsbury he helped organise what became recognised as the first British and Irish Lions, British Lions rugby union tour of 1888 British Lions tour to New Zealand and Australia, Australia and New Zealand in 1888. The team played 55 matches, winning 27 of 35 rugby matches. He took over the captaincy early in the tour when Robert Seddon, Robert L. Seddon drowned in a sculling accident. In 1890, Stoddart became a founding member of the Barbarian F.C., the invitational rugby club. On 27 December that year, Stoddart was given the captaincy of the very first Barbarian team, in a game against Hartlepool Rovers.

Personal life

While on tour in Australia, Stoddart met Emily Luckham, also known as Ethel Elizabeth, a popular singer and reciter married to Bulletin journalist and Manly, New South Wales sporting identity, Robert Adams Luckham. In 1901, Emily left for Europe, reportedly for the good of her voice. She did not return, and her husband divorced her on grounds of desertion in 1903. She married Stoddart in 1906.

Later life

Stoddart and his wife lived in St John's Wood, London. He worked on the London Stock Exchange, then became secretary of Queen's Club. But like many wholehearted sportsmen, including fellow England captain, Arthur Shrewsbury, with whom he had opened the batting in Australia in 1893, he found life difficult after leaving the arena. In 1915, in failing health and burdened by debt he committed suicide, by firearm, in his bedroom in London. His remains lie in an unmarked grave in Radford, Coventry. A street in South Shields is named after him.


A portrait painted by Henry Weigall Jr, of Stoddart batting and Gregor MacGregor (sportsman), Gregor MacGregor Wicket-keeper, keeping wicket, was given to the Marylebone Cricket Club, MCC in 1927 by W.H. Patterson, a MCC committee member. The identity of the artist of the oil painting was only reaffirmed in 2018. The picture regularly hangs in the Lord's Pavilion, Pavilion at Lord's.



External links

Cricinfo page on Andrew Stoddart

* {{DEFAULTSORT:Stoddart, Andrew 1863 births 1915 suicides Suicides by firearm in England England Test cricket captains English cricketers English rugby union players England Test cricketers Middlesex cricket captains Wisden Cricketers of the Year England international rugby union players British and Irish Lions rugby union players from England Barbarian F.C. players Blackheath F.C. players Sportspeople from South Shields I Zingari cricketers English cricketers of 1864 to 1889 English cricketers of 1890 to 1918 Gentlemen cricketers East of England cricketers Married v Single cricketers North v South cricketers Marylebone Cricket Club cricketers Gentlemen of England cricketers Home Counties cricketers A. Priestley's XI cricketers C. I. Thornton's XI cricketers A. J. Webbe's XI cricketers Lyric Club cricketers Earl De La Warr's XI cricketers Middlesex cricketers Lord Londesborough's XI cricketers A. E. Stoddart's XI cricketers