24 Top cricketer

24 – Tim Ravenscroft

ONE of two modem-day Guernsey players to win Hampshire county recognition and a batsman with a remarkable array of shots. From an early age it was clear here was a major talent and that has not gone away, despite his wavering periods of dedication and commitment to a sport in which he clearly could have achieved so much more. He played age-group cricket for Hampshire from the age of 11 after being spotted by Rajesh Maru when he visited Guernsey. For the next five years the Elizabeth College student was regularly flying between Guernsey and England, before at the age of 16 he took a break from cricket to concentrate on his education.

In 2005 he won West of England representation and received his cap from the England and Yorkshire star Darren Gough. Each region of England was represented in Taunton that year and (see cutting) the post-event assessments rated the Guernsey youngster as the outstanding player of his age in the country.

In his time at Elizabeth College he came close to adding his name to the College Field century honours board, falling for 92 in an exciting run chase to the classic 2009 game.

In 2010 he briefly played Second XI cricket for Sussex, but he soon returned to Hampshire where he put in some solid performances for the Hampshire Second XI during the 2011 season. The teenager made his first team debut in a List A match in the Clydesdale Bank 40 against Scotland. He scored five runs that day but there were over 500 runs in the Second XI across all competitions. Hampshire offered him another development contract for 2012, but he then chose a life outside professional cricket and back on the island intermittently has been a main player for both Cobo

and the Island sides. At the age of 16 he first appeared for the Guernsey senior team in 2008 in a friendly against Kenya at the County Ground, Hove. Later that summer, he played for Guernsey in the 2008 European Cricket Championship Division Two and scored an unbeaten 21 against Gibraltar.

In the years since he has played 39 times for the Island in a variety of World League and European 50-over or T20 matches.

There have been some classic knocks, standout performances being 70 against the tough Italians in 2011, an unbeaten 64 against Germany in 2010, 55 against Cayman in 2012 and, in 2015,58 off the Botswana bowlers and 74 against Fiji. The innings against Italy was notably special, his 70 at the top of the order coming from just 37 deliveries and including nine fours and three sixes. At the end of the powerplay that day Guernsey were romping along at nine per over. His meagre three inter-insulars have realised no major scores, but there were was a 31 in 2010 and 25 in 2019.

Had he wished to commit to the Island squads, there is no doubt he would have been an ever- present in the Guernsey side for the last decade and, in the main, his appearances have largely been in Evening League for a dominant Cobo.

His explosive batting has been key in their successes of recent years and it is doubtful if anyone has deposited more straight sixes over the fence separating the cricket and 3G playing areas at KGV Unlike most batsmen Ravenscroft does not yearn for centuries, seemingly content to just enjoy himself at the wicket as long as it lasts.