Ranji Hordern

Ranji Hordern

Cricketer Biography
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Ranji Hordern

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Dr. Herbert Vivian "Ranji" Hordern (10 February 1883 - 17 June 1938) was an Australian cricketer who played in 7 Tests from 1911 to 1912. He was the first major leg-spin and googly bowler to play for Australia. His nickname, "Ranji", came from his dark complexion, and is a reference to the famous Indian (but played for England) cricketer K S Ranjitsinhji.


Hordern was born in North Sydney, New South Wales and made his debut in first-class cricket by taking 8 for 81 for New South Wales—and 11 wickets in the match—against Queensland in December 1905. He then moved to the United States to pursue his studies. While a student of dentistry at the University of Pennsylvania, he toured England in 1908 and Jamaica in 1908-09 with the Philadelphian cricket team. He played 17 first class matches for Philadelphians, and it was during his time in America that he perfected his googly.

Hordern returned to Australia in 1910. Owing to the foresight of Warren Bardsley, he found his way back into the state side immediately. After picking up 43 wickets in six matches in the 1910-11 season, he convinced the Australian selectors to follow Bardsley's lead. Chosen for the Fourth Test of the 1910/11 series against South Africa, he took fourteen wickets at an average of 21.07 in his two Tests in this series<ref...
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