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Fry, Charles Burgess (1872 - 1956)

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189789.  Tue Jul 10, 2007 5:20 am Reply with quote

Captain Charles Burgess Fry, was probably the greatest allrounder of his or any generation. He was a brilliant scholar and an accomplished performer in almost every branch of outdoor sport. Fry was the perfect amateur; he played games because he loved them and never for personal gain. He captained England in Test Matches, and the Mother Country never lost under his captaincy. He played Association Football for England against Ireland in 1901; he was at full-back for Southampton in the FA Cup Final of 1902; and he put up a world's long jump record of 23 ft. 5in. in 1892 which stood for twenty-one years. But it was at cricket that his outstanding personality found its fullest expression.

Records contain scant details of Fry's achievements as a bowler. Yet he figured in a somewhat heated controversy in the 90's about "unfair deliveries." He was generally regarded him as a thrower. Fry was equally insistent that all his deliveries were scrupulously fair. In his writings, Fry recalls how Jim Phillips, an Australian heavyweight slow bowler turned umpire, was sent to Hove specially to "no-ball" him.

"A bright move, because, of course, I rolled up my sleeve above my elbow and bowled with my arm as rigidly straight as a poker. The great Jim, sighting himself as a strong umpire, was not deterred. Large as an elephant, he bluffly no-balled me nine times running. It was a farce and the Sussex authorities and players were angry."

After he had passed his seventieth birthday, he one day entered his club, saw his friend Denzil Batchelor, and said he had done most things but was now sighing for a new world to conquer, and proposed to interest himself in racing, attach himself to a stable, and then set up on his own. And Batchelor summed up his genius in a flash of wit: "What as, Charles? Trainer, jockey, or horse?"


189794.  Tue Jul 10, 2007 5:28 am Reply with quote

...and of course he was able to jump backwards onto a mantlepiece. though i'd still be interested to know his motivation for even trying that.



189802.  Tue Jul 10, 2007 5:52 am Reply with quote

Oops, I just posted about C B Fry on the other thread before I saw this one.

So in the interests of cross-referencing, post 189796 is of some relevance here.

Fry's sporting achievements were certainly many and varied, although the one about the long jump record isn't correct - commonly made as it is. He tied the world's record for the long jump in the Oxford v Cambridge track and field meeting of 1893. The person whose record he tied was an American named Reber who had set it in Detroit two years earlier, so Fry's jump did set a new record for Oxford v Cambridge competition - and in that capacity it did indeed stand for twenty one years. But as a world's record, the leap was surpassed eighteen months later by an Irishman named Mooney.

(All the same, had Fry gone to the 1896 Olympics, he might well have won the 100 meters and the long jump.)

189824.  Tue Jul 10, 2007 7:23 am Reply with quote

I tried to clear up the connection this is as far as I got ...

Stephen John Fry son of Alan John Fry son of John William Fry son of John Henry Fry son of Robert William Fry son of Samuel Fry.

(that should be far enough back)

Charles Burgess Fry son of "John L. Fry" (possibly Louis John Fry) after that I'm stymied !

I can't find any direct familial link so I guess it must be as suze has earlier postulated a "twice removed" type thing ..


190012.  Tue Jul 10, 2007 7:09 pm Reply with quote

I still think that greatest all-rounder was probably Max Woosnam.

At Winchester College, he captained the golf and cricket teams, while also representing the school at football and squash. As a schoolboy, he scored an impressive 144 for a Public Schools XI while playing against the MCC at Lord's.

In 1911 he enrolled in Cambridge University, where he represented the university at football, cricket, lawn tennis, real tennis and golf (being a scratch golfer). Upon leaving, he played amateur football for the then highly successful team, Corinthian Casuals, and Chelsea F.C.

In the First World War he fought alongside renowned, but then unknown, poet Siegfried Sassoon, fighting on the Western Front and the Gallipoli Campaign. After the war, Woosnam continued his amateur sporting career by taking part in several sporting events including Wimbledon and began to attract a great deal of fame. He declined the opportunity of becoming a professional sportsman, finding the idea 'vulgar', and he always detested any idea of celebrity which could be attached to such a position.

Upon moving to Manchester, he signed for Manchester City (on amateur terms), eventually rising to become their captain at the recommendation of his team-mates - a highly unusual act for an amateur among professionals. Eventually, his success allowed him to play for England (both for the amateur team and as a full international as captain). Woosnam was also selected to captain the British football team at Olympics, but refused, having already committed himself to the tennis team. He continued other sporting endeavours outside of football however, winning doubles titles at Wimbledon and the Olympics, and captaining the Great British Davis Cup team.

He ended up on the board of ICI, and died in 1965 of respiratory failure.

Woosnam's uncle, Hylton Philipson, was also a cricketer and played five Test matches for England. He once defeated actor and film director Charlie Chaplin at table tennis while playing with a butter knife instead of a bat, much to the chargrin of Chaplin, who stormed off when they finished. Besides being a pioneer for table tennis, he was very experienced at snooker too (once achieving a maximum break)! He also drove a bus during the general strike.

Other noted polymaths include Alfred Lyttleton, who was also a noted politican, and Cuthbert Ottaway, a great cricketer and "dribbler" in football (before the game was down to passing the ball as much) before his tragic death aged only 27.

263682.  Tue Jan 22, 2008 11:21 am Reply with quote

Is anyone aware if he ever referred to himself as Reverend Fry?

264968.  Thu Jan 24, 2008 3:29 pm Reply with quote

HAD wrote:
Is anyone aware if he ever referred to himself as Reverend Fry?

to my knowledge C B had two nicknames ‘Almighty’ and ‘Lord Oxford’.



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