The Little Dasher – Harry Graham
Harry Graham was “fearless and free … it can honestly be said that he was entitled to be ranked amongst the star batsmen of the world”. The question to perhaps ask and ponder is: what happened to Harry Graham?
He was gifted as a cricketer and Australian Rules footballer. After four games for Victoria he was selected for the Australian tour of England in 1893. He toured England again in 1896 as well as playing in New Zealand on his return from the tour. He was a member of the Melbourne Cricket Club team that played in New Zealand in 1899. There were coaching stints in Dunedin and representative cricket in the early 1900s for New Zealand.
A foreword has been written by the former Australian player Graeme Watson who like Harry Graham was a gifted Australian Rules footballer and cricketer.
This is the fourth book written by Ronald Cardwell in the past six years on an aspect of New Zealand cricket, one of which, The Team That Never Played – Wahine and the 1968 Otago University Cricket Team, was co-authored with the esteemed New Zealand writer, Bill Francis. Ronald Cardwell is still working as an insolvency practitioner and forensic accountant in Australia and New Zealand. He is a Trustee of The Cricketers’ Hardship Trust in New Zealand, an organisation that would have helped Graham if it had been in existence. The author has sought to bring to life a forgotten and sad cricket story to readers of the game. The book (172 pages with 56 images) is available in a trade edition at a cost of $55 (including GST) plus postage.
Review by New Zealand Cricket Museum
The book is admirably researched and there are illustrations throughout the text which reflect both his cricketing career and his period of treatment. The author has consulted archives in both Australia and New Zealand and has created a most valuable paper trail for interested readers and future scholars, alike…
Books like this make us realise that greatness can be transient and it can come at a huge price. It is important reading for us all and is a well needed corrective to some of the blandness that can permeate cricket writing.