A profile of Joe Hardstaff
by Dave Liverman
Joe Hardstaff (junior) followed in his father's footsteps to represent both Nottinghamshire and England. Like his father, he was mostly a batsman, with an upright attacking style founded on strong defence. He surpassed his father both in appearances for England and in first-class centuries - if not for the years lost to the war he almost certainly would have extended his 83 first-class hundreds to the coveted 100 mark. Described by E.W.Swanton as "one of the most stylish and gifted batsman of his generation", he toured Australia three times, and the West Indies once. He made his debut against South Africa in 1935, and established himself as a Test player with a succession of steady innings. He took part on the famous 903/7 rout at the Oval with an unbeaten hundred, but probably his finest Test innings was an "enchanting" innings of 205* against India in 1946. When he retired in 1955, he had made more runs for Nottinghamshre than anyone else, with centuries against all the first-class counties other than his own. He spent two seasons playing in New Zealand with Auckland in 1948/49 and 1949/50. His son (another Joe) also played first-class cricket, the third generation to do so.
(Article: Copyright © 2003 Dave Liverman)