April 18, 1901, Cleckheaton, Yorkshire. Died: September 10, 1968 (Aged 67)
Right-hand bat, Right-arm fast-medium
1926 - 1947
1929. YCCC Cap No. 63.
BATTING AND FIELDING AVERAGES
Wilf Barber rendered admirable service as a batsman and first-rate out-fielder, particularly on the leg boundary, while a professional for Yorkshire between 1926 and 1947. During this period Yorkshire won the Championship eight times.
Specially strong in off-side strokes and with sound defence he was a typically obdurate Yorkshire opening batsmen. Competition for places was fierce and he did not gain a regular place in the side till 1932 when the illness of Percy Holmes gave him an opportunity. In scoring 1,000 runs he took his chance.
In all first-class fixtures during his career Barber, a product of Yorkshire Council cricket, scored 16,402 runs--15,289 of them for Yorkshire--for an average of 34.38 and of his 29 centuries, he hit 27 for his county.
Eight times he exceeded 1,000 runs, his most prolific season being that of 1935, when he reached an aggregate of 2,147 and an average of 42.09. That year he made his highest score of 285 against Surrey at Bramall Lane, Sheffield. He also hit 248 against Kent at Headingley in 1934, when he and Sir Leonard Hutton, by scoring 267 for the first wicket, saved their side from an awkward situation after facing a first-innings deficit of 148.
Barber shared in seven other opening partnerships of 100 or more for Yorkshire, four of them with Arthur Mitchell, with whom he became the natural successor to Holmes and Sutcliffe. He also took part in six other stands of 200, of which the largest was 346 in four and a half hours with Maurice Leyland, against Middlesex at Sheffield in 1932. Barber hit 162 and Leyland, despite the necessity of employing a runner because of lameness, 189.
Twice Barber appeared for England, against South Africa in 1935 at Headingley and at Old Trafford - he was one of six Yorkshiremen to represent their country during the season.
He toured Australasia with the M.C.C. Team captained by E. R. T. Holmes in 1935-36, scoring 797 runs, average 41.94. Apart from an innings of 91 against Queensland at Brisbane, he did not altogether fulfil expectations in the Australian part of the tour, but, as senior professional, he found his best form in New Zealand. Besides 173, 93 and 60 in the four representative games with New Zealand, in which he obtained 365 runs, average 60.83, he made 116 against Canterbury.
After his retirement, Barber became a coach and groundsman at a school at Harrogate. who died in hospital at Bradford on September 10 after a short illness, aged 66. W. E. Bowes (in an appreciation of Barber in the Yorkshire Evening Post) wrote: Perhaps even more than Sir Leonard Hutton, he was a text-book player.
LV=CC Division One
15 - 18 May 2013
Yorkshire Bank 40
19 May 2013
Yorkshire Bank 40
27 May 2013
Radlett Cricket Club, Radlett