Dickie Bird

Country: England
Born: April 19, 1933, Barnsley, Yorkshire
Height: 5ft 10in
Batting Style: Right hand Bat
Bowling Style: Right arm Offbreak

Dickie Bird Bio

Harold Dennis Bird, affectionately known as Dickie Bird, is an iconic figure in the world of cricket. With his white cap, twitching shoulders, and forearm stretch, he became a beloved umpire known for his remarkable skills and humorous personality. Born in Barnsley, England in April 1933, Bird’s passion for cricket began at a young age.

Standing at 5’10” and a right-hand batsman, Bird had a promising playing career. He played in a Barnsley side that included future cricket legends Geoff Boycott and Michael Parkinson, maintaining lifelong friendships with both. Bird even had the opportunity to represent Yorkshire, one of the top cricket teams in the country, debuting in 1956 against Scotland. However, despite his talent, he struggled to secure a regular first team place in a highly competitive side.

In 1959, Bird made a career-best performance of 181* against Glamorgan at Bradford. Unfortunately, he was omitted from the next game as senior players returned from Test duty, leaving him disappointed. Eventually, Bird made the decision to leave Yorkshire and joined Leicestershire at the end of that year. In his first season with Leicestershire in 1960, he won his county cap and topped 1,000 first-class runs. However, he later referred to this decision as “the biggest mistake” of his life.

Retiring relatively early at the age of 32, Bird transitioned into coaching and playing as a club professional. Though he had some regrets about his playing career, Bird’s true calling lay in umpiring. In 1970, he officiated his first game, and his first Test came three years later in a match against New Zealand at Leeds. Bird’s impeccable umpiring skills and ability to diffuse tense situations with common sense and good humor earned the respect and admiration of players and spectators alike.

Over the course of his career, Bird officiated in 66 Tests and 69 One-Day Internationals, setting a record and overtaking Frank Chester’s previous total of 48 Tests. Not only was he known for his impressive umpiring abilities, but he also gained remarkable friendships off the field. He became a frequent visitor to Buckingham Palace, attended by Queen Elizabeth II over 20 times, and developed relationships with prominent figures like former Prime Minister John Major, cricket enthusiast John Paul Getty, and renowned author Stephen King.

Bird’s contributions to the game were recognized with numerous accolades, including being awarded the MBE in 1986. Despite his retirement from umpiring, Bird’s involvement in cricket did not end. He became a media personality, appearing on popular quiz and chat shows, and embarked on a successful speaking tour where he entertained audiences with his humorous anecdotes. Bird also authored several books, including the best-selling sports autobiography “My Autobiography” with Keith Lodge and “White Cap and Bails.”

Throughout his career and beyond, Bird remained committed to the game he loved. His calm demeanor, consistency, and impartiality as an umpire enhanced the enjoyment of spectators without overshadowing the cricket itself. He was known for his reluctance to give lbw decisions, insisting on being certain according to the laws of the game. In recent years, Bird has expressed reservations about technology’s increasing role in cricket, as he believes it marginalizes umpires.

Dickie Bird’s legacy in cricket is indisputable. His remarkable umpiring skills, humorous personality, and unwavering love for the game have endeared him to players and fans around the world. He will always be remembered as an iconic figure who enhanced the spirit of cricket and left an indelible mark on the sport.

Dickie Bird Career Stats

Dickie Bird Batting Stats

Batting Matches Innings Nos Runs High Score Ave BF SR 100s 50s 4s 6s Ct St
Tests - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T20Is - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
ODIs - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
FC 93 170 10 3314 181* 20.71 - - 2 14 - - 28 0
List A 2 2 0 9 7 4.5 - - 0 0 - - 0 0
T20s - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

Dickie Bird Bowling Stats

Bowling Matches Innings Balls Runs Wkts BBI BBM Ave Econ SR 4w 5w 10w
Tests - - - - - - - - - - - - -
T20Is - - - - - - - - - - - - -
ODIs - - - - - - - - - - - - -
FC 93 - 48 22 0 - - - 2.75 - 0 0 0
List A 2 - 0 0 0 - - - - - 0 0 0
T20s - - - - - - - - - - - - -

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