Derek Ufton, England’s oldest international who played 277 games for Charlton and also held wicket for Kent, dies at the age of 92
- Derek Ufton earned 277 caps for Charlton and 149 first-class Kent appearances
- His only English football cap came against a side of the rest of the world in 1953
- He served as Charlton’s club director and became president of Kent in 2001
Derek Ufton, England’s oldest international footballer and former Kent cricketer, has passed away at the age of 92.
Ufton was a man of one club in both sports, with 277 appearances for Charlton and 149 first-class appearances for Kent from the 1949/50 season to 1962.
The former center-back and wicket-keeper also won a Three Lions cap in a game against a Rest of the World squad at Wembley in 1953.
Derek Ufton, England’s oldest international footballer and former Kent cricketer, has passed away
Ufton (left) was a single-club man in both sports, playing 277 games for Charlton
A tweet from Charlton read: ‘The club is deeply saddened by the passing of club legend Derek Ufton, who passed away peacefully in his sleep at the age of 92.
“The thoughts of everyone at Charlton Athletic are with Derek’s family during this troubled time.”
A statement from Kent, meanwhile, said: ‘He and his wife Judy were very regular visitors to The Spitfire Ground, St Lawrence from their home in Elham, and all the many people who wanted to stop and talk to him were greeted with a cheerful smile and a huge wealth of stories. Kent will be a much poorer place without him.
“The thoughts of everyone at the Club are with Derek’s family during this troubled time.”
Born in Crayford on May 31, 1928, he won a scholarship to Dartford Grammar School, where he took gym lessons from Joe Jagger, Mick’s father, and allowed his passion for sports to blossom.
Ufton famously dislocated a shoulder at 0-0 and was taken to Greenwich hospital after 17 minutes of a game against Bill Shankly’s Huddersfield in December 1957.
He also made 149 first-class appearances for Kent from the 1949/50 season to 1962
He was about to undergo surgery when he learned that his team was down 4-1 and tried to fire himself and return to the Valley. When he came to from the anesthesia, the 10 men had recovered and won 7-6.
Charlton also said that Ufton suffered the same injury no less than 20 times during his playing days.
For Kent, he scored 3,915 points with an average of 20.01 and was involved in 313 layoffs, including 269 catches and 44 stumpings.
His most successful season for the province was in 1961, when he scored 668 points and claimed 90 victims behind the stumps.
After retiring from practicing both sports, Ufton served three years as manager of Plymouth Argyle between 1965 and 1968, taking charge of a total of 115 games.
The former center-back also won a Three Lions cap in a game against a Rest of the World squad at Wembley in 1953.
He was also National Chairman of Lord’s Taverners cricket organization, club director of Charlton for 26 years and president of Kent from 2001.
Fellow Ambassador Keith Peacock told Charlton’s website, “I’ve never heard anyone say a bad word about him. He was a wonderful man and gentleman – thoughtful, kind, and very intelligent.
Derek was so unique because there were very few people who could play at a very high level in football or cricket and he both succeeded, showing what an all-round sportsman he was.
‘He had so many stories he could remember, even until recently, and he was just interesting to talk to. He also always had his opinion about today’s players, especially the central halves!
“It was an honor to just be around him and have him such a big part of Charlton and he will always be remembered.”
He also served as Charlton’s club director for 25 years and became president of Kent in 2001