90-86 Top cricketers

90 – Vince Kenny

An occasionally brilliant opening batsman whose gung-ho approach and overwhelming urge to dominant good opening bowlers could be his downfall. Initially a Centrals player he played virtually all his club cricket in Cobo colours where he scored fairly heavily for more than a decade when Cobo became a major force in all forms of cricket. Also a useful medium pace bowler his 3 for 22 spell was key in Cobo winning the 1987 GCA KO Final against a strong Tortevites side.

But it was another five summers before he finally broke into the full Island side – and it proved a debut to remember. Although Guernsey were to fall just short of chasing a target of 201, the debutant hit a fine 63 at the top of the innings.

Future Island games were not as productive for this sparky cricketer but in club cricket he was always a major threat to the best of attacks and in 2002 he was a key man as St Pierre won their first of back-to-back Evening League titles.

89 – Terry Nicholls

Rovers were onto a winner when this English all-rounder landed on our shores in the mid-1960s. ‘He was an extremely hard-hitting batsman and a very lively bowler off quite a short run-up,’ recalled former GCA President Brian Le Prevost when choosing the tall, bespectacled player in his all-time best Evening League side some years ago.

His stay in Guernsey cricket was fairly brief but whether it was with Rovers or the GCL or GICC sides he invariably performed. In the inter-league match of 1965 played on the FB Fields his forceful batting in tandem with Frank Fortey enabled the GCL to creep beyond 100 and make a game of it. Then his accurate seamers picked up four cheap wickets as the home side lost eight wickets in getting home.

That same season his blistering 56 at the top of the order and 3 for 16 saw Rovers rout then big rivals Pessimists and clinch the Division One championship.

Other notable performances:

1965 –          64 GICC v EC; 60 Rov v Harlequin; 4-17 GCL v JCL; 5-38 GICC v Incogs; 79 & 4-19 GICC v FoxCC

98 – Capt FGR Mockler

The elder of two brilliant sporting brothers, Francis had three years in the Elizabeth College 1st XI and by the end of 1908 had developed into a formidable all-round cricketer. That summer he hit two centuries and destroyed Victoria College in the first of their clashed, taking 7 for 21 and 3 for 39 as the Jersey side were shot out cheaply, and then scoring 56 in their innings.

By the end of that season he had amassed 567 runs at an average of 43.6 and taken 73 wickets at 10.15. Eight years later in 1916 and aged just 26 he was killed at the Battle of the Somme.

A selection of highlights stats from his time in the College 1st XI:

1905 –         6-11 v Grange

1906 –          86 v Athletics

1907 –          6-29 v Athletics; 7-42 v Mr Laine XI; 68* v Vic Coll; 6-40 v M/c Regt; 5-15 v RGA Jsy; 58 v RGA Gsy; 79* v Grange; 29 & 5-51 v Rangers

1908 –          130* & 5-35 v HMS Cumberland; 64 & 6-6 v 13th Coy RGA; 6-56 v Athletics; 8-67 v Grange; 56 & 7-21 & 3-39 v Vic Coll;

100 & 6-35 v 2nd Bn Middlesex; 9-33 v Vic Coll

87 – Brian Rose

The 1930s was a strong period for Elizabeth College but it was ultimately blackened by tragedy – and tearaway fast bowler Brian Rose was one of three outstanding OE cricketers to be killed in second World War action. The renowned Elizabeth College coach Jack Reddish described Rose’s quickies as ‘rather intimidating on a fiery wicket, and coupled with the equally capable Bill Watling the 1939 opening attack is probably the finest the school ever had.’

The report of the 1939 Victoria games make for interesting reading. In game one when Victoria were rushed out for just 35 it was noted ‘Rose bowled with amazing speed and was virtually unplayable.’

A selection of highlight stats from his time in the College 1st XI:

1937 –         5-28 v Pilgrims; 4-22 v Commercial League; 4-6 v GICC; 4-9 v HMS Nelson; 3-48 v Vic Coll;6-23 v GICC

1938 –          6-10 v GICC; 4-31 v Pilgrims

1939 –          3-8 v GICC; 4-15 v Pilgrims; 3-7 v Vic Coll; 4-40 v Commercial League; 5-28 v HMS Vindictive; 6-10 v King Edward school; 6-14 v Taunton school; 5-35 v Vic Coll

86 – Richard Kendall-Tobias

The father of BBC Radio Guernsey presenter and personality Jenny was part of the very successful Pessimists team of the late 1950s and early into the 1960s.

The hotelier was a tall seam bowler. His best season was 1960 when a string of ‘five-fors’ saw him chosen in the inter-insular for the first time. A second change bowler that day, he took 2 for 39 in a narrow defeat, but one of those wickets was that of the highly talented Jersey captain Gordon Knight.

He was also heavily involved in cricket administration and for six years in the early 1960s served as vice-president of the Guernsey Cricket League. One former team-mate recalled that his nagging length and height from a high action made it tough to score against, particularly on the bouncy KGV bitumen strip. His pace was very much on the slow medium side and achieved movement off the pitch with his off-cutters and leg-cutters.