The primary cumbersome historical past of Hampshire, a county fashioned as way back as 1863, appeared in 1957, from the pens of the boys finest certified to write down it, Harry Altham, John Arlott, Desmond Eagar and Roy Webber. The following historical past was within the Christopher Helm sequence, written by Peter Wynne-Thomas and printed in 1988. Another author to have tackled the topic is David Allen, though he didn’t go all the way in which again, coping with the submit warfare years in Hampshire County Cricket Membership: 1946-2006 Entertain or Perish.
With out delving into cricketing pre-history the primary Hampshire cricketer to be the topic of a biography was a army man, Robert Poore, at all times recognized by his army rank of Main. Poore loved one beautiful English summer time with the bat, 1899 and, a sportsman of many abilities, he will need to have been an enchanting man for writer Jeremy Lonsdale to analysis. The Army’s Grace was printed in 1992.
There have been a handful of matches during which Poore appeared with one other outstanding novice cricketer, Hesketh ‘Hex’ Hesketh Pritchard. A positive quick bowler Hex was one other army man and in addition an explorer and author. He has been the topic of two biographies, one by Eric Parker, Hesketh Pritchard, printed as way back as 1924, and a way more current and accessible e-book within the ACS Lives in Cricket sequence by Simon Sweetman. HV Hesketh Pritchard: Superb Tales appeared in 2012.
A extra everlasting mark within the report books was made by Phil Mead, who started a profession that lasted for greater than thirty years in 1905. A prodigious run scorer all through his profession Mead was additionally, within the early years, a removed from negligible sluggish left arm bowler. He was, lastly, the topic of a biography, CP Mead, by Neil Jenkinson, a e-book printed in 1992.
A very long time teammate of Mead, George Brown, was one in every of cricket’s most versatile performers. A category act with the bat, behind the stumps and as a quick bowler Brown, who appeared in seven Assessments was a notable character and, in 2018, the topic of a self-published biography by Michael Stimpson.
Hampshire cricket breeds characters it could appear, and the following man to be thought-about is the previous England Captain Lionel Tennyson, son of the poet Alfred Lord Tennyson, who debuted for the county in 1913. A swashbuckling batsman and captain, and in his youth rumbustious quick bowler, Tennyson wrote two autobiographies and, in 2001, was the topic of a positive biography by Alan Edwards, Regency Buck. His autobiographies had been From Verse to Worse and Sticky Wickets, printed in 1933 and 1950 respectively.
Between 1919 and 1923 Harry Altham performed for Hampshire. A modest batsman Altham is a lot better often known as a cricketing historian, writer and administrator and was the topic of a e-book, The Coronary heart of Cricket, that was printed in 1967. Neither autobiography or biography the e-book is a group of writings on or about Altham that was edited by Hubert Doggart. Altham was additionally the topic of a slim monograph that was printed by EW ‘Jim’ Swanton in 1960, and he’s the topic of a brand new e-book simply printed by Christopher Saunders and written by grandson Robin Brodhurst, The Altham-Bradman Letters.
From Altham we transfer on to a cricketer with a well-known identify, however solely 4 county appearances, all in 1933 and with no nice achievement. The Reverend GLO Jessop was the son of the Gloucestershire all-rounder of the ‘Golden Age’, and in 2020 the story of his life, Jessop’s Son, was advised by David Battersby.
Jessop was the one Hampshire participant who debuted between the wars who has been the topic of a e-book, however there have been a quantity written about those that started their careers within the years after World Conflict Two ended. The primary was Derek Shackleton, who bowled with metronomic accuracy from 1948 to 1969. A giant hearted proper arm medium quick bowler Shackleton, with 2,857 wickets, lies seventh within the all time listing. His biography, On The Spot by David Matthews, was printed in 1998.
Alan ‘Punchy’ Rayment made his first look a 12 months after Shackleton. A modest batsman however fascinating character who performed for Hampshire for 9 summers Rayment produced a cumbersome autobiography, Punchy By The Covers, in 2013. Beware although these whose solely curiosity is cricket because the e-book covers solely that a part of Rayment’s life that takes him as much as the beginning of his cricket profession. Sadly Rayment died final 12 months at 92 with out seeing a observe up quantity into print however, Stephen Chalke helping, it’s hoped that the remainder of Rayment’s story, together with his cricket profession, will emerge later this 12 months.
In 1961 Colin Ingleby-Mackenzie led Hampshire to their first County Championship. Ingleby-Mackenzie was an old school novice and a flamboyant character and it’s one thing of a shock that he has by no means been the topic of a biography. There’s nonetheless an autobiography, Many A Slip, appeared the 12 months after the county lifted the title.
From 1953 to 1972 a Barbadian, Roy Marshall, was a massively widespread and profitable batsman for Hampshire. A gap batsman Marshall by no means held again and in 1970 printed an autobiography, Check Outcast.
Bernard Harrison is an fascinating man, and never one most would count on to have been the topic of a biography. A fringe participant for Hampshire within the late Fifties and early Sixties he featured in solely fourteen First Class matches. Extra famous as a soccer participant he performed, over the identical interval, simply over 100 skilled video games, primarily for Crystal Palace, earlier than going into educating. Kevin Smallbone printed Harrison’s story in 2001, Brushes with the Greats – The Story of a Footballer/Cricketer.
In 1966 Richard Gilliat first performed for Hampshire and between 1971 and his retirement in 1978 he led the county. There isn’t any biography of Gilliat as such, however there’s a chapter on him in a e-book about his household, The Gilliats, written by Ian Foster and printed in 2016.
The following three males to function right here had been, like Marshall, born abroad, and the primary two of whom each first appeared for Hampshire in 1968. The primary was a seamer who performed for the county for 5 summers. John Holder has an honest sufficient report as a bowler however he by no means performed Check cricket and his larger achievement was to succeed in the highest as an umpire. Andy Murtagh, who made his Hampshire debut the 12 months after Holder performed his final sport for the county, wrote Test of Character in 2016.
By way of legacy and achievement the opposite member of the ‘class of ’68’ is without doubt one of the best batsman to have performed the sport. Barry Richards thrilled county crowds for a decade. There are two books that concern the lifetime of the good man, The Barry Richards Story, that appeared in 1978, and a biography by Murtagh in 2015, Sundial in the Shade. He’s additionally the topic of a current monograph from Michael Sexton, The Summer of Barry, that appears at his report breaking season with South Australia in 1970/71.
Richards very long time opening companion was Gordon Greenidge. The Barbados born however Berkshire raised Greenidge performed in over 100 Assessments for West Indies however will get a point out right here by dint of spending the most effective a part of twenty years with Hampshire. His autobiography, The Man within the Center, appeared in 1980.
Very long time Hampshire captain and now achieved broadcaster Mark Nicholas printed his autobiography in 2016. A Beautiful Game is without doubt one of the better of the style. Of his prices three have been the topic of books, Robin Smith, Sean Udal and Hampshire’s second Marshall, Malcolm.
Smith has written two books which can be primarily autobiographical in nature. The primary, Quest For Quantity One, printed in 1993, will not be precisely an autobiography, however the newer, The Judge, appeared in 2019 actually is. It’s a thought upsetting and engrossing learn with reference to a person at whom life has actually aimed just a few brief ones through the years.
Shaun ‘Shaggy’ Udal was an off spinner and an fascinating character who, very late in his profession, received 4 Check caps in opposition to India and Pakistan. Udal’s autobiography, My Flip To Spin, appeared in 2007, coinciding along with his retirement.
Leaving, maybe, the most effective till final brings me to the Barbadian quick bowler Malcolm Marshall. Throughout his fourteen years with Hampshire, in 1987, Marshall’s autobiography, Marshall Arts, appeared. In 2000, following Marshall’s premature dying, his collaborator in that e-book, Pat Symes, up to date and republished the e-book as Maco: The Malcolm Marshall Story.
Which brings the biographies nearly to an finish, however no bibliophile may go away the difficulty of Hampshire biographies with no reference to the restricted version essays that John Arlott produced for Hampshire beneficiaries, booklets which can be scarce, priceless and extremely collectable. They exist, in various limitations, for Jimmy Grey, Henry Horton, Arthur Holt, Derek Shackleton, Vic Cannings, Danny Livingstone, Roy Marshall, Mervyn Burden, Neville Rogers, Leo Harrison, Peter Sainsbury and David ‘Butch’ White, in addition to two very comparable publications for amateurs Colin Ingleby-McKenzie and Desmond Eagar.
And eventually, a 12 months after Ingleby-Mackenzie debuted Mike Barnard from Portsmouth made his bow and was a helpful batsman over fifteen summers. Barnard additionally performed league soccer for his house city membership for half a dozen seasons. There has not been a biography of Barnard however in 2010 his old fashioned, Portsmouth Grammar, printed a refined twenty web page monograph by Dave Allen.
So far as collections of biographical sketches are involved Hampshire followers have a number of decisions. First is Dean Hayes’ Well-known Cricketers of Hampshire, printed in 1993. There’s in fact a Tempus 100 Greats e-book, put collectively by Neil Jenkinson, Invoice Ricquier and Dave Allen in 2003. Extra just lately Dave Allen, this time on his personal, produced a complete e-book overlaying all Hampshire County Cricketers, which was printed in 2019.
Allen and fellow historian Alan Edwards have additionally produced some fascinating booklets. Milestones of Hampshire Cricket got here from Edwards in 1983, and he additionally wrote Hampshire’s First Eleven 1864 in 2015, an in depth have a look at the county’s first match. As just lately as final 12 months Allen wrote Simply The Best, a tribute to Kyle Abbott’s match haul of 17 for 86 in opposition to Somerset the earlier September.
Which brings me to my brace of decisions. They’re very comparable, being biographies of a few all-rounders and contemporaries. Jack Newman first performed for Hampshire in 1906 and over all however 1 / 4 of a century scored greater than 15,000 runs and took greater than 2,000 wickets with out ever getting a Check cap. Scot Alex Kennedy began a 12 months later than Newman, however went on six years longer. Kennedy’s contribution to the county’s trigger was greater than 16,000 runs, and approaching 2,900 wickets. His reward was a visit to South Africa in 1922/23, the place he performed in all 5 Assessments.