Roy Fredericks (Roy Clifton Fredericks) was born in November 11, 1942 in Blairmont, East Bank, Berbice, Guyana (then British Guiana). He was a former West Indies opening batsman who played between 1968 and 1977. Fredericks was considered one of the most destructive left-handed batsmen of his time. He often annihilated the best pace bowlers of his generation. He was named Wisden Cricketer of the Year in 1974. He was an opening batsman for the West Indies in both Test cricket and one-day cricket. This Guyanese accumulated 4,334 runs in 59 Tests at an average of 42.49 with 8 hundreds and 26 fifties. Fredericks played only 12 ODIs in which he averaged 25.91.
He made his Test debut against Australia on December 26, 1968. Fredericks got an offer from Glamorgan, and made 145 not out in his first appearance for them in 1971. He also chipped in with the ball by taking 5 wickets. He got his county cap after this match. After Frank Pinch in 1921, he was the second player to score a hundred on Glamorgan debut.
Freddo, as he was fondly called by his teammates, made his first Test hundred in his 15th match, which was played against New Zealand at Sabina Park on February 16, 1972. The Test was a high-scoring encounter and ended in a draw.
In the final of World Cup 1975 against Australia at Lord’s, Fredericks became the first player in ODI history to be dismissed for being hit wicket and also became the first player to be dismissed for being hit wicket in World Cup history.
Fredericks was a destructive batsman in 1975, he played a blistering match-winning knock of 169 on a lightning fast pitch of Perth. Add to it, he reached his century off just 71 balls, the second quickest of that time after Jack Gregory’s 67-ball assault. However, Australians won the series 5-1 and this was the only Test that the West Indies won.
Fredericks was also one of the finest fielders of his time. He recorded 62 Test catches and 177 First-Class catches in his career.
As he was fearless, tough and had a relentless approach towards batting Fredericks was nicknamed ‘Kid Cement’. He inspired the next generation legendary West Indies batsman Brian Lara.
Fredericks averaged a staggering 63.83 for Guyana. He made 103 and 207 respectively in his last two matches for his home team against Trinidad & Tobago and Jamaica. Before this match, Forbes Burnham appointed him as Minister for Youth, Sport and Culture in Guyana.
Fredericks also played in Kerry Packer’s World Series cricket. With the Guyana Cricket Board, he also served as the minister of sport and administrator. After this, he become selector and also coached budding cricketers.
Roy Fredericks was 57 when died of throat cancer in New York on September 5, 2000.