Alan Davidson was a contemporary of Richie Benaud, and the two played for New South Wales together, thus becoming very good friends on tour. Davidson was a bowling all rounder, in the mould of Benaud himself, but someone who bowled left-arm medium pace. His economical action and release – as the name of his autobiography ‘Fifteen Paces’ suggests – went a long way in helping him pick a bag of 186 wickets at a stunning average of less than 21 apiece. His economy rate of 1.97 was even more surprising for a medium pacer, and he invariably gave his team the early break through.
Davidson’s bowling was strongly backed by his reasonably aggressive batting in the lower order and his amazing ability to pick up catches out of thin, which also gave him his nickname, ‘The Claw’. His best bowling record abroad was in India, where he picked up 30 wickets at a parsimonious average of 15 per wicket, very surprising considering that the pitches in the country supported spinners, and rarely helped pace bowlers.
In the1960 tied Test at Brisbane, Davidson showed his all round talent, picking up ten wickets in the match and scoring more than 100 runs, becoming the first cricketer to achieve such a feat. After retirement, he became a National Selector for the Australian cricket team, and then went on to become the President of the NSW Cricket Association.
- Australia Vs England at Trent Bridge, Nottingham - Jun 11, 1953
- Last played:
- Australia Vs England at Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), Sydney - Feb 15, 1963