Hastings Watson was the first man to score a half-century for Glamorgan, with his feat coming against Surrey at the Oval in 1889.
Hastings was the son of the Rev. William Watson of Louth in Lincolnshire. As a teenager, he had moved to Cardiff where he set up a business importing timber. His business quickly went from strength to strength, with his main customers being the ever-expanding collieries in the South Wales valleys who were seeking pit props, as well as the plethora of railway companies who were seeking material to use as sleepers.
He played initially for Cardiff CC, before moving to live in Llandaff and appearing for Fairwater CC, where he rubbed shoulders with other well-to-do young gentlemen with business interests in Cardiff Docks. His success with both bat and ball in club cricket led to his selection for Glamorgan’s London tour in 1889.
After a fine innings of 58 against Surrey Club and Ground at The Oval, he kept his place for the closing game of the county’s inaugural summer, against the MCC at the Arms Park. He appeared again for the next four seasons, and in 1891 played alongside his elder brother Arthur, who was a clerk in holy orders, in the trial match against a Colts XXII at the Arms Park.
Hastings was also a leading member of the Glamorgan Hunt, riding out with hounds on a regular basis and taking part with great success in the point-to-point races which the Hunt held. He met with much success riding his horse Amulet which won the coveted Mackintosh Cup at the Cowbridge Races, besides winning sixteen other races with his other horses, Borodino and Decco.
Besides being a decent cricketer and rider, Hastings also excelled at tennis, hockey and rugby, before in later life becoming a fine golfer with the Royal Porthcawl and Radyr clubs.
WATSON, William Hastings.
Born – Saltfleet-by-St. Peters, Lincolnshire, 15 October 1868.
Died – Llandaff, 8 July 1930.
Career best performances
Minor County Friendlies – 58 v Surrey Club and Ground at The Oval, 1889 and 3/15 v Devon at Exeter, 1893.