It has been announced today that Graeme Smith and Tim May are the latest former international players to be awarded Honorary Life Membership of MCC.
The Club has bestowed this honour in recognition of their outstanding achievements in cricket.
Smith became South Africa’s youngest ever captain at the age of only 22, and went on to enjoy a monumental Test Match career, making 27 centuries amongst his 9,265 career runs, with an average of 48.25. He is third on the list of his country’s all-time run scorers in Test cricket.
His first tour of England in 2003 became memorable for his two double-centuries in the first two Tests of the series – the second of which came at Lord’s and broke the record for the highest individual score by an overseas player. His 259 beat Sir Donald Bradman’s 73-year record and wrote himself into Lord’s folklore.
Named one of Wisden’s Cricketers of the Year in 2004, Smith secured a second place on the Honours Board in 2008, hitting a century at the Home of Cricket in the drawn Test with England.
He was also impressive in One-Day International cricket for his country, scoring 6,989 runs at an average of 37.98, including ten centuries. Smith also enjoyed stints domestically in England with Somerset and Surrey in county cricket.
An off-spinner who made his Test Match debut for Australia in 1987, May went on to play 24 Tests for Australia, taking 75 wickets, with a remarkable best of 5 for 9 against the West Indies in 1993 in a match that Australia lost by a single run.
May played at Lord’s in the 1993 Ashes Series, just missing out on a place on the Honours Board with figures of 4 for 81 as Australia defeated England. He brought up his 300th first-class wicket in that match.
His first-class career yielded 439 wickets in total, whilst he also played 47 One-Day Internationals for his country, claiming 39 wickets.
It is his contribution after retirement where he has made his biggest impact on the game, becoming the inaugural CEO of the Australian Cricketers’ Association in 1997, and shortly afterwards became the first CEO of FICA (Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations).
He joined the MCC World Cricket committee in October 2013 and has also served as a member of ICC’s Cricket committee.
The pair follow Paul Collingwood, AB de Villiers, Mitchell Johnson and Adrian Morgan in being awarded Honorary Life Membership of MCC in 2019.