how old is dickie bird

Cricket legend Dickie Bird has spoken of his regret at never having married or had children as he celebrates his 90th birthday.

The former umpire was treated to a reception at Headingley cricket ground – the home of Yorkshire County Cricket Club – as he marked the occasion on Wednesday.

Bird was surrounded by celebrities from the worlds of sport and broadcasting, including Sir Sir Michael Parkinson and Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson, for a meal.

But speaking ahead of the event, he told ITV News he had made sacrifices because of his commitment to the game.

“I regret that I didnt marry and have a family. That is my one regret,” he said.

“I think Id have made a good father and if the lad had played cricket, played for Yorkshire, it would have made my life.

Born Harold Dennis Bird in Barnsley, Bird enjoyed a modest playing career for Yorkshire and Leicestershire before hanging up his pads in 1965 at 32.

Eight years later he umpired his first international match on his way to becoming internationally recognised as one of the best in the business.

Recalling that day, he said: “I was here before the grounds staff. It only seems like yesterday.”

In total, Bird umpired 66 international test matches and 69 one-day games, standing in the middle for his last fixture in 1996. He retired from the county game two years later.

Officiating in an era when those in the middle couldnt rely on technology, Bird said he would have relished the opportunity to take advantage of the help offered to modern day umpires.

“I would, because youve nothing to do,” he said. “They dont look for no balls or running on the wicket… yeah Id love it.”

Bird was presented with a cricket-themed cake for his birthday, which he showed off to cheering fans sat in the Kirkstall Lane End where the players balcony bears his name.Dickie Bird was presented with a cricket-themed cake for his 90th birthday.

“I enjoy coming to watch and Ill always come here as long as I can,” he said.

Sir Michael, who made the journey north despite a recent spell in hospital, said Bird was “the soul of cricket and an extraordinary human being”.

Baroness Grey-Thompson said: “Hes an incredible man, kind and thoughtful. He typifies everything that we want from sport.”

Fellow Yorkshire cricketer Geoff Cope said: “Dickie is one of those people who seems to have been here forever.”

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Playing career edit

After suffering a knee injury that prevented him from playing professional football, he turned to cricket, his second love. He played club cricket in his early years in Barnsley with Michael Parkinson, a journalist and chat show host, who he would go on to become a lifelong friend; Geoffrey Boycott later joined them on the team. In 1956, Bird signed up with his home county, Yorkshire. [1] Boycott has praised Bird’s batsmanship, but believes that his inability to control his nerves hindered his attempt to establish a career in county cricket[5] – though fierce competition for the opening batsman’s spot did not help either. After making his first (and only) century in the County Championship at Bradford against Glamorgan in 1959, he was actually dropped in the following match when regular opener Ken Taylor (who was playing for England) returned from international duty. With the exception of the MCC vs. Champion County match, Bird played in just five more championship matches that season. He also spent the majority of the season as the “twelfth man,” which was hardly a position that encouraged him to develop his batting confidence. He relocated to Leicestershire just before the 1960 season began, and at first he was able to maintain a fairly regular position on the team. He amassed over 1,000 runs in his debut season (1960), which included a century against the visiting South Africans, which would turn out to be his only other first-class century. But due to a combination of declining form, diminished confidence, and a relapse of his ongoing knee injury, he lost favor with the team, and he played his final game in 1964. Bird participated in 93 first-class cricket matches for Yorkshire[1] and Leicestershire as a batsman overall between 1956 and 1964, the majority of which were in the County Championship.

Bird played professional cricket for Paignton from 1965 to 1969 after his county career ended, amassing over 10,000 runs in that time. Between 1966 and 1968, he was the cricket coach at Plymouth College. From 1968 to 1969, he was the coach in Johannesburg. [6].

Post retirement edit

After that, Bird wrote his autobiography, which he simply called My Autobiography and had Michael Parkinson write the foreword. More than a million copies of the book were sold. [11] Hodder and Stoughton released White Cap and Bails: Adventures of a Much Traveled Umpire, a sequel, in 1999. [12] To assist underprivileged youth in achieving their sporting potential, Bird established the Dickie Bird Foundation.

Bird appeared in one episode of Trigger Happy TV. In 2010, he also made an appearance in a Top Gear episode. [13] He also participated in BBC’s The Young Ones that year, where six celebrities in their seventies and eighties tried to use throwback fashion from the 1970s to combat some of the issues associated with aging. [14] He additionally made a cameo in Heartbeat’s Series 16 Episode 7, officiating a cricket match. Statue of Bird as an umpire.

On June 30, 2009, a six-foot statue of Bird was unveiled in the vicinity of his birthplace in Barnsley. [19] To deter late-night revelers from hanging inappropriate objects on the renowned finger, it has since been raised and placed atop a five-foot-tall plinth. [20].

Bird said, “Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I would become the president of the greatest cricket club in the world,” regarding his impending appointment as Yorkshire CCC President in 2014. [2].

Bird was one of 200 prominent people who signed a letter to The Guardian in August 2014 expressing their hope that Scotland would decide in the September referendum on the matter to stay a part of the United Kingdom. [21].

Bird talked to the BBC in March 2021 about feeling alone while hiding during the COVID-19 lockdown. He claimed that the secret to his positive attitude was exercise. [22].

Early life edit

Harold Dennis Bird was born on Wednesday, April 19, 1933, in Church Lane, Barnsley, West Riding of Yorkshire, England. However, his family moved to New Lodge estate when he was two years old, as his house was demolished as part of a slum clearance program. [3][4] The coal miner’s son, he picked up the moniker Dickie at school. Bird attended Raley Secondary Modern School in 1944 after failing his 11-plus exam; he left at the age of 15. He worked in a coal mine for a while before deciding it was not for him. Instead, he set out for a career in sport.


What is Dickie birds real name?

Harold Dennis Bird, aka ‘Dickie’, was born in April 1933 in Barnsley, the son of a miner, James Harold. Given the nickname Dickie at school, by the time he’d reached 15 and had left Raley Secondary Modern, his focus was on making a career in sport.

Does Dickie Bird have children?

Cricket legend Dickie Bird has spoken of his regret at never having married or had children as he celebrates his 90th birthday.

Was Dickie Bird ever married?

This afterlife is important to Bird because he never married – “I was married to cricket,” he says – and he admits that, now he has passed 80 (the peg for his new book of cricketing memories), life can be lonely.

What does a Dickie Bird look like?

This chunky grassland bunting is colored like a miniature meadowlark, with a black V on a yellow chest. These birds are erratic wanderers—common across the middle of the continent, and a pleasant surprise whenever they turn up in pastures and fields elsewhere in the central and eastern United States.