Richard (Richie) Richardson was born on January 12, 1962 in the tiny village of Five Islands, Antigua. He was the third of four children for his parents Elfrieda & Samuel Richardson. He attended the Five Islands Primary school and then went on to the Ottos Comprehensive School for his secondary education. Upon completion he went on to the Antigua State College, where he pursued a course in Electrical Engineering.
Richie was always a sports enthusiast. At school he captained the football and cricket teams. He was also house captain for school sports day activities. His real love however, was football, but soon realized that in order to make a career as a sportsman, he had to choose his second love, Cricket. He represented Antigua at football at the age of 16 years.Richie’s elevation to the West Indies Cricket Team came after a consistent season in the 1983 Shell Shield tournament when he hit centuries off Barbados and Jamaica, where he faced up to the likes of the world most fearsome bowlers at that time, Michael Holding, Malcolm Marshall, Courtney Walsh & Joel Garner. He made his debut for the West Indies in 1983-84 against India in at Wankhede Stadium, Bombay. In his first test, he was adjudged LBW for a duck and then made 26 in his second innings. He still laughs today when he speaks about his first test innings. “The ball hit the middle of the bat, and the umpire gave me out”. This made me a much tougher person and I knew I had to be tough if I wanted to perform at the highest level”. Richie was a gentleman on and off the field, unfailingly courteous, modest and humble. He was a destructively brilliant batsman, particularly on hard pitches where he could throw the bat through the line with abandon, carving the ball square. He hooked willingly too, usually up, frequently for six. Like Richards, he never wore a helmet, and his wide-brimmed maroon sun hat became a trademark. He reserved his finest innings for the Australians: scoring nine centuries against them. The finest was at Georgetown in March 1991, when he blasted 182, including 106 in the final session of the first day. In 86 Tests, Richardson scored 5,949 runs including 16 centuries at an average of 44.39. He was also an outstanding fielder in the slips or gully and took many brilliant catches. He played county cricket for Yorkshire CC in 1993 and 1994, then for Northern Transvaal in South Africa in 1996, before retiring completely from professional cricket at the end of that season in 1997. He was named Wisden’s Cricketer of the year in 1992.