The Simmo Special

23rd March 2016

Around the World in 2 – a few occasional off-breaks

Each week for ‘Mason & Guests’ I put together a brief summary of cricket events outside the Caribbean, round-up the week’s notable WI birthdays & anniversaries, & throw in a few ‘Did You Know?’ facts:

“Hello! This is David Oram taking you ‘Around the World in 2‘:

“In the World T20 it’s 2 wins out of 2 for both WIndies’ men & women. Darren Sammy’s team overcame SL having earlier disposed of Eng; but Did You Know in that game Moeen Ali became the 1st man ever in intl cricket to be out 2nd ball for more than 6? Having hit his 1st ball into the crowd, he was run out next ball coming back for a 2nd.

“Stafanie Taylor’s ladies comfortably won their 2nd game v Bang, having edged out Pak by 4 runs in their low-scoring opener. But Spare a Thought for Javeria Khan, who was horrifyingly hit by a Shamilia Connell bouncer. The Pak opener was stretchered off in the 1st over & had to have a CAT scan. Thankfully, she’s now out of hospital, but has been ruled out of the tournament.

“Elsewhere, Spare a Thought also for the passing of David Green, aged 76. The Lancs & Glos batsman was a popular player & later a witty cricket journalist. In 2013 he published his reminiscences, ‘A Handful of Confetti’. But Did You Know that Green held a unique record? He’s the only man ever to score over 2,000 runs in a 1st-class season, but not hit a hundred. In 1965 he made 2,037 runs in 63 inngs at an avg of 32.8 with 14 50s, & a HS of 85.”

A Few Birthdays & Anniversaries:

“Today is Roston Chase’s 24th birthday. The Barbados all-rounder hit 710 1st-class runs this season at an avg of 59.1 & took 23 wkts at 15.8. Dare I suggest these are intl quality stats?

“Other birthdays include Trinidad’s Suruj Ragoonath, who played 2 Tests in 1999, who’s 48 today; Sir Clyde Walcott’s son, Michael who played once for Barbados in 1975, is 64 today; St Vincent’s Sunil Ambris is 23 tomorrow; while on Sun, Jamaica’s Xavier Marshall, who played 37 times for WI between 2005-09, is 30; & Beverly Browne, who played 19 times for WI women between 1973-79, is 59.

“Sat is the centenary of the 1916 birth of Eng great, Bill Edrich. He scored over 2,000 Test runs at 40, & more than 36,000 1st-class runs with 86 centuries between 1934-58. In 1947, he & his batting partner Denis Compton scored 7,355 runs between them, mostly for Eng & Middx. In 1991 the 2 new stands at the Nursery End at Lord’s were named in their honour. Edrich was also a professional footballer with Norwich City & Tottenham Hotspur; & served in WWII as a squadron leader in RAF Bomber Command, being awarded the DFC. His relief at surviving the conflict encouraged him to live life to the full. He was married 5 times – & died in 1986 aged 70.

“Sun is 125 yrs since the 1891 birth of Eng all-rounder Vallance Jupp. He played 8 Tests in the 1920s & captd Northants, but missed the entire 1935 season because he was in prison. He was incarcerated for manslaughter after his reckless driving caused the death of a motor-cyclist. Jupp returned to playing in 1936.

“Sun is also 10 yrs since the premature death following a stroke & pneumonia of Neil Williams. Born in St Vincent, the brisk seamer played 1 Test for Eng in 1990 – called up at short notice after Chris Lewis suffered a migraine. Williams enjoyed great success with Middx, where he was a team-mate of Roland Butcher, & took nearly 700 wkts for them between 1982-94 as they won 4 county championships. He also played 24 times for the Windward Islands. Williams returned to the Caribbean & was coach of St Vincent’s Academy for Kids at the time of his tragic death.

“Sun is also 25 yrs since Aus’ Dean Jones was bizarrely run out during the 2nd Test v WI at Georgetown. He was bowled by Courtney Walsh, but not hearing the no-ball call, Jones wandered towards the pavilion, & was run out by Carl Hooper. Umpire Clyde Cumberbatch upheld the appeal, apparently contradicting Law 38.2

“& finally, Mon is the 75th birthday of Jack Simmons. A long-serving all-rounder in the same Lancs team as Clive Lloyd throughout the 1970s & 80s, he played until he was 48 & scored over 12,000 runs & took over 1,500 wkts for the red rose county. He was later Lancs chairman, & chairman of the ECB. Simmons was affectionately known as ‘Flat Jack’ after the trajectory of his off-spin, rather than the size of his tummy. In fact, his eating prowess was legendary – & his local chip shop introduced his regular order as part of their menu & named it the ‘Simmo Special’ in his honour: it consisted of a large steak & kidney pudding, double chips, peas & gravy, with a jumbo haddock on top. Graeme Fowler recalled driving back from a game with Simmons, who refused to be dropped off home: ‘No, just take me to the chippie so I can pick up a special’ he said. ‘That’s okay’, said Fowler, ‘I’ll wait & run you home’. ‘Nay, no thanks, lad,’ said Jack. ‘I’ll walk home & have it on the way. If the wife knows I’ve eaten, I won’t get m’ dinner.’

“Until next time, this has been ‘Around the World in 2′ with David Oram.”

You can listen to the above round-up here.

The Mason & Guests show is broadcast live every Tuesday from 6.15-8pm ECT (10.15pm-midnight GMT) on Voice of Barbados 92.9fm, and can be heard by clicking on ‘LISTEN LIVE’ on the website page via the link provided. To catch up on previous broadcasts, click on this link to the show’s archives.

David Oram

David Oram is an Englishman following West Indies cricket from Islamabad. When I lived in the region, I was the resident ‘statto’, co-host and sometime presenter of ‘Mason & Guests’ – weekly cricket talk-show, the sport’s leading radio show in the WIndies – hosted by the Caribbean’s principal radio commentator, Andrew Mason. You can tweet me at DavidOram@colblimp1983.


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