Harold ‘Dickie’ Bird OBE has been proposed as the man to replace Geoffrey Boycott as Yorkshire’s new president, a decision that will be ratified at the club’s AGM at the end of next month.
The Yorkshire Board unanimously nominated the 80-year-old umpiring legend for a one-year term. The club’s AGM will take place at Headingley on Saturday March 29.
Bird scored 3,314 runs in a 93-match first-class career for Yorkshire and Leicestershire between 1956 and 1964, but is best known for his role as an international umpire through the seventies, eighties and nineties.
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He stood in 66 Test matches and 93 one-day internationals, including three World Cup finals, before retirement in 1996.
Bird said: “Never in my wildest dreams did I think that I would become the president of the greatest cricket club in the world. It is a tremendous honour, and I am very humble and proud.
“To follow in the footsteps of some of the legends, such as Lord Hawke, FS Jackson, Sir Leonard Hutton, Brian Close, Bob Appleyard, Raymond Illingworth and Geoffrey Boycott, that have graced the club as president is the proudest moment of my career.
“I am particularly excited about the current team and the influx of young players coming through the system.
“The coaching staff, under Martyn Moxon and Jason Gillespie, are creating a winning culture, and I do believe we are on the verge of creating a team that we will all be proud of that will eventually lift some silverware.”
Bird was born in Barnsley, and he signed amateur terms with Barnsley Football Club at the age of 15 before concentrating on his cricket. He was awarded an MBE in 1986 and an OBE in 2011.
Yorkshire chairman Colin Graves, who also praised the contribution of Boycott since he took on the role in 2012, said: “It is with great pleasure that Dickie has accepted our nomination.
“He is a passionate Yorkshireman that has the best interests of Yorkshire Cricket at heart. He attends every home match, and his passion and dedication will be a major asset as the club continues to develop over the next few years.
“I must thank Geoffrey, who has made an outstanding contribution during his two years in office.
“It has been a privilege and a pleasure to have worked with a true legend of both Yorkshire and world cricket.
“Geoffrey has been immense in his role, and has been a faultless ambassador – promoting with enthusiasm and pride, our great club across the world through his role as a broadcaster and column writer.”