Wilf Hughes had a dramatic and sudden entry into first-class cricket in 1935, and on his Glamorgan debut against the touring South Africans at the Arms Park, the fast bowler struck a swashbuckling 70 during a tenth wicket partnership of 131 with Cyril Smart, hitting four huge sixes, and helping to save the game for his county – not bad for someone who had joined Glamorgan ostensibly as a bowler and who had previously thought that he was not good enough to play county cricket!
Wilf had initially played club cricket for Ebbw Vale and Minor County cricket for Monmouthshire in the late 1920s, but after reading science at Bangor University, he decided to qualify as a teacher and took up a post in Northamptonshire. He played in club cricket in the East Midlands, and whilst playing for Kettering earned a reputation as a fiery bowler and fierce striker of the ball.
When Glamorgan played in Northamptonshire, Maurice Turnbull heard about Wilf`s exploits so the science teacher was invited to the Arms Park for a trial. After being suitably impressed, the officials gave Hughes the opportunity of playing for the county in his school holidays, and he continued to appear until 1938, forming a useful pairing with the experienced Jack Mercer.
During the Second World War, Wilf was appointed Adjutant of the School of Artillery at Larkhill, and after being demobbed he took up a post at a school in Dorset. Wilf subsequently played for Poole CC and appeared in Minor County cricket for Dorset between 1946 and 1949. Wilf ended his teaching career as Headmaster of a boys’ school in Peterborough.
HUGHES, David Wilfred
Born – Ebbw Vale, 12th July 1910.
Died – Southampton, 21st April 1984.
Best performances for Glamorgan:
In first-class cricket – 70* v South Africans at Cardiff Arms Park, 1935; 5/70 v Leicestershire at Aylestone Road, 1936.