Joseph Edward Lynch

Born26 December 1880, Monkstown Co Dublin
Died 29 September 1915, Loos France
EducatedClongowes Wood College,Dublin University
OccupationArmy Officer
Debut 11 September 1909 v All New York at Staten Island
Cap Number272
StyleRight-hand bat, right-arm medium fast
Teams Dublin University
HistoryJoseph Lynch, who was also a fine ruggy footballer and golfer had one of the stranger Irish cricket careers. He did not find a regular place in the University side until his last summer term, at the beginning of which he became a Commisioned Oficer in the Royal Irish Fusiliers but still played a full season for the Club.

In 1906 Lynch was stationed in India with his regiment but contracted typhoid. He was invalided home and, subsequently, left the Army.

He then was not seen in Irish Cricket until 1909, when, out of the blue, he was selected for Frank Browning's side that toured USA and Canada. He appeared for the University Past and Present XI against the 1905 Australians. The University heroes in this match were "Old Boys" Frank Browning with two fifties and leg spinner PA Meldon who took 10 wickets. Joseph captured three but as these included Victor Trumper lbw when in full cry at 22, had a game to remember.The two days before the Australian fixture saw the University play Cork County at College Park. The hosts made a modest 184, but then shot the visitors out for 88. Joseph making the ball move off the wicket took 8-23 in 11 overs. Seven of these were to slip catches by JT Gwynn. However in the follow on, he failed to take a wicket as Sir Timothy O'Brien hit 107, to save the match.

His American tour was not a successs though here he was not alone. Against New York, he did not get on in the first innings as Bill Harrington and Willie Napper dismissed the Amsricans for 29. He made 0* and was only allowed two wicketless second innings overs as the innings victory was secured. He played in the first Philadelphia match, went wicketless and fell for 1, becoming Bart King's 10th victim of the innings, and 11. His innings in the scond knock was Ireland's third top score as the Australian "Ranji" Horden ran through them with leg breaks which spun in Warne like proportions. During the Canadian leg of the tour both Joseph and Willie Napper seriously contemplated settling in the country. Eventually Napper did so but Joseph returned home.

On the outbreak of war, Joseph rejoined the Army as a Lieutenant in the RAMC. He was attached to the 6th Yorkshire Regiment and reached the front line at Loos in Setember 1915. On the 26th advancing from Loos he was killed. His body was at first recovered but the burial party came under bombardment and had to abandon their task. It was never recovered. His name, along with some 55000 others, including that of CR Faussett his University captain in 1905, may be found on the Menin Gate, the memorial to those who fell in the War and have no known grave. Joseph Lynch died one day before another Irish paceman Jim Ryan who perished in the same battle.

NB I am indebted to Andrew Renshaw's Wisden and The Great War for the additional details on Joseph Lynch's death. Renshaw, as editor of the volume has expanded on Joseph's brief obituary which may be found in the Almanack's 1916 edition.

Edward Liddle, April 2007, updated May 2014

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