A personal memory of Godfrey Evans

A Personal Memory of Godfrey Evans

I once met Godfrey Evans, Kent and England wicketkeeper throughout the 1950s, and one of the greats of England cricket. Not a Somerset memory but a memory to be treasured nonetheless.

It was at a cricket event in London. I have long since forgotten which. It was not too long before Evans died. He was presented to the event and said a few words but his voice was weak and he looked very tired. I had taken my cricket-playing, barely teenage son to the event. I managed to corner Evans at the end of the event to introduce my son to him so that he could at least say he had met the great man. “This is my son, he is a leg-spinner,” I told Evans. Evans’ tired eyes lit up and he suddenly became animated. “Leg spinner! Leg spinner! Loved leg spinners. Lots of chances. Lots of chances, Stick with it young man.” And with that Evans went his way and we went ours, but with another jewel of a cricketing memory to bank.

All Wright on the night

T20 Finals Day. Second Semi-Final: Somerset v Sussex. 15th September 2018. Edgbaston.

I was one of those lucky enough to obtain a ticket for T20 Finals day at Edgbaston. A nailbiting wait and a lot of redialling in a hotel room in Leeds on the first morning of Somerset’s match against Yorkshire at Headingley. Then a coach journey as long as a T20 match and enough razzmatazz to relaunch Billy Smart’s circus. Not everyone’s idea of a good day at the cricket but I enjoyed it and not just for the razzmatazz. There was some startlingly good cricket too.

For anyone who can bear it here is my report on Finals Day as it happened. Or at least as I saw it which is not necessarily the same thing…Read More »

Gregory’s game

T20 Quarter Final. Somerset v Nottinghamshire. 27th August 2018. Taunton.

This match was due to be played on 26th August but rain and a very wet outfield meant it was delayed until the following day. The delay took it too close to the Championship match at Headingley for the report to be finalised before it was time to travel north (via London). The final touches were therefore put to it in time for it to be posted on grockles.com as a curtain raiser on the eve of Finals Day.

Nottinghamshire had knocked Somerset out of both the T20 and 50 over competitions at the Quarter Final stage in 2017.

Nottinghamshire won the toss and elected to field.

The match may have been a day late but most must have got there or passed on their ticket from the rains of Sunday to someone who could get there for the ground was as near full as could be. It was certainly the crowd of the season. And it sounded like it. It was behind the Somerset team from the outset and cheered it on at every twist and turn of as mesmerising a game of cricket as could be hoped for.Read More »

A testimonial to good cricket

T20 South Group. Kent v Somerset. 16th August 2018. Canterbury.

“The best laid schemes o’ mice an’ men gang aft a-gley.” Robbie Burns knew a thing or two. Ask any Somerset supporter. Or consider my attempts to keep up with proceedings at Canterbury where Somerset were trying to hold on to top spot in the T20 Competition South Group in the last round of group matches …

Somerset won the toss and elected to field.

West Somerset to East Kent is too far to travel for a group stage T20 match. So someone bought me a ticket to Marcus Trescothick’s Testimonial Dinner in the 1875 Club which was being held at the same time as the match. I don’t have a smart phone but the person who bought me the ticket was thoughtful enough to send me with someone who does. And then it was announced the match would be televised …Read More »

A stellar match

T20 South Group. Somerset v Surrey. 10th August 2018. Taunton.

Surrey, the auld enemy and a match fit for such an occasion. Both teams still had a very real opportunity of qualifying for the Quarter Finals and played as if they intended to get there.

Somerset won the toss and elected to field.

After a few days break from match report writing, it as been a long haul since April, time to catch up – here is the Surrey T20 report, drafted the day after the match. Polished a bit this evening:

Apparently NASA’s Parker Solar Probe will travel at speeds of up to 430,000 mph. Jamie Overton doesn’t bowl quite that fast but in his first over on Friday he bowled fast enough to remove two Surrey batsmen.Read More »

A Rye look at the cricket

T20 South Group. Hampshire v Somerset. 8th August 2018. Southampton.

I did not travel to this match and so watched the live broadcast. It brought back unnerving memories of a very tight match at the same ground nearly a decade before.

Somerset won the toss and elected to field.

I am in trouble at home. Ruining the edges of seats at cricket grounds all around the country whilst watching Somerset is one thing. Ruining one at home is viewed less kindly I have discovered. Watching Somerset at home is far more gruelling than actually being at the match.Read More »