British Sports Hall of Fame 1947: Benny Lynch, Marjorie Pollard, Herbert Sutcliffe and Joyce Wethered

My choices for the British Sports Hall of Fame for 1947 are:

Benny Lynch (Boxing) –  a brilliant flyweight with a devastating punch who was world champion from 1935 to 1938.  He won the NBA version of the title by knocking down the reigning champion eight times in the first two rounds before the contest was stopped.  In 1937 he defeated the man whom the Americans regarded as the holder of the title and later that year handed Britain’s future world champion Peter Kane his first professional defeat. However, personal problems led him to struggle with making the weight and he forfeited the title in 1938 because of this although he won the fight which was declared a non-title bout.  He only had one more fight.  In his career he won 88 and drew 17 of his 119 contests.

Marjorie Pollard (Hockey) – a fine exponent of several sports but it was at hockey that she really excelled. She won 41 caps for England between 1921 and 1937 scoring at least 115 goals, although some records are hard to establish from the early matches. Some of her feats in internationals were remarkable, including 13 of the 20 goals against Wales in a 1926 match and 6 against Ireland in 1927. She was a great pioneer for women’s sports administration and in the media as well.

Herbert Sutcliffe (Cricket) – one of the finest opening batsmen in the history of English cricket.  He played 54 Tests between 1924 and 1935 scoring 4555 runs at an average of more than 60, the highest average of any England batsman playing more than twenty matches.  In first class cricket he scored more than 2000 runs every year from 1922 to 1935 and three times exceeded 3000 runs.  The third of those years was 1932 when he shared in an opening stand of 555 runs for Yorkshire v Essex, a world record.  He scored more than 50,000 runs in his career.

Joyce Wethered (Golf) – one of the finest female golfers of the inter-war years.  She was British Ladies Amateur champion four times in her six appearances in the event, winning in 1922, 1924,1925 and 1929 when she defeated the top American golfer.  She won the English Ladies Amateur Championship every year from 1920 to 1924.  In the later part of her career she concentrated on mixed events, winning the Worplesdon Mixed Foursomes eight times.  She played in the Curtis Cup as team captain in 1932 before playing in America as a touring professional.

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