Former Aussie skipper/wicketkeeper Barry Jarman dies, aged 84

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first_imgFORMER Australia Test captain and wicketkeeper Barry Jarman has died, aged 84. Jarman played 19 Tests from 1959 to 1969 and captained the side for one Test on the 1968 Ashes tour when regular skipper Bill Lawry was injured; leading them to a draw that meant Australia retained the Ashes.Australia’s 33rd Test skipper, he’s one of just five Australian male wicketkeepers to captain his country in Test cricket.Jarman made his Test debut as a 23-year-old in India in 1959 but had to bide his time for almost a decade before he was a regular in the Test team, with Wally Grout – nine years Jarman’s senior – Australia’s first-choice gloveman for most of the 1960s.A decision early on Australia’s 1957-58 tour of South Africa was to define the careers of both Grout and Jarman. Both men were uncapped and vying for the vacant wicket-keeping spot but after Grout scored 95 with the bat in a warm-up match before the first Test, he was given the nod for the series opener.And when he claimed six second-innings dismissals on Test debut, Grout had proved his worth and would rarely drop out of the side for most of the next decade.Jarman was a regular in touring parties but, as Grout’s understudy, he played just seven Tests between 1959 and 1967, only getting a chance when Grout was injured.When Grout finally retired in 1966 at the age of 39, the South Australian took over and played 12 Tests in a little more than a year before he too retired in 1969 at the age of 33.While Grout’s presence meant Jarman didn’t play as much for his country as he would have liked, he was a mainstay of the South Australian team for more than a decade and was part of their Sheffield Shield side that won the title in 1963-64.Today, the most improved player in South Australia’s men’s side each season is awarded the Barry Jarman Trophy.When he retired, Jarman had 560 dismissals to his name from 191 first-class games, a tally only Grout and Bert Oldfield bettered at the time.Jarman went on to have a career as an International Cricket Council match referee, working in 25 Tests and 28 ODIs between 1995 and 2001.In 1997, he was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for service to sport in South Australia.Jarman also played a key role in introducing another much-loved figure in South Australian cricket to the game. Having employed a young man named Barry Rees at his sports store in the early 1960s, Jarman nicknamed his young employee ‘Nugget’ and, upon learning of his love for cricket, brought him into the Adelaide Oval rooms, where he’s been a beloved feature ever since.“Barry was one of South Australia’s internationally known names,” SACA president Andrew Sinclair said in a statement.“He was a great competitor and gentleman, who appreciated the way the game should be played and was always had a terrific sense of humour.“He lived his life to the full and was not afraid to share his opinion; you were never left in any doubt as to his view. He was a delight to be around.“Our thoughts are with his family: wife Gaynor, and children Kristen, Gavin, Jason and Erin.”While he struggled to get a chance in the Test side for most of his career, Jarman was a popular member on Australia’s overseas tours.“When you have 17 players in a touring party, you can get little divisions at times with various states who might try to stay together,” former Test bowler Eric Freeman told the ABC in 2012.“But Barry was the one where if we went out for a drink, we went out in groups not just one or two guys.” (

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