- Inter Insular
- Inter Insular #63 2014
- Inter Insular #64 2015
- Inter Insular #65 2016
- Inter Insular #66 2017
- Inter Insular #1 T20 2018
- Inter Insular #2 T20 2019
- Inter Insular #67 2019
- Inter Insular 2020
- Inter Insular 2021
- Inter Insular Series Start
- Inter Insular #1 1950
- Inter Insular #2 1951
- Inter Insular 1952
- Inter Insular #3 1953
- Inter Insular #4 1954
- Inter Insular #5 1955
- Inter Insular 1956
- Inter Insular #6 1957
- Inter Insular #7 1958
- Inter Insular #8 1959
- Inter Insular #9 1960
- Inter Insular #10 1961
- Inter Insular #11 1962
- Inter Insular #12 1963
- Inter Insular #13 1964
- Inter Insular #14 1965
- Inter Insular #15 1966
- Inter Insular #16 1967
- Inter Insular #17 1968
- Inter Insular #18 1969
- Inter Insular #19 1970
- Inter Insular #20 1971
- Inter Insular #21 1972
- Inter Insular #22 1973
- Inter Insular #23 1974
- Inter Insular #24 1975
- Inter Insular #25 1976
- Inter Insular #26 1977
- Inter Insular #27 1978
- Inter Insular #28 1979
- Inter Insular #29 1980
- Inter Insular #30 1981
- Inter Insular #31 1982
- Inter Insular #32 1983
- Inter Insular #33 1984
- Inter Insular #34 1985
- Inter Insular #35 1986
- Inter Insular #36 1987
- Inter Insular #37 1988
- Inter Insular #38 1989
- Inter Insular #39 1990
- Inter Insular #40 1991
- Inter Insular #41 1992
- Inter Insular #42 1993
- Inter Insular #43 1994
- Inter Insular #44 1995
- Inter Insular #45 1996
- Inter Insular #46 1997
- Inter Insular #47 1998
- Inter Insular #48 1999
- Inter Insular #49 2000
- Inter Insular #50 2001
- Inter Insular #51 2002
- Inter Insular #52 2003
- Inter Insular #53 2004
- Inter Insular #54 2005
- Inter Insular #55 2006
- Inter Insular #56 2007
- Inter Insular #57 2008
- Inter Insular #58 2009
- Inter Insular #59 2010
- Inter Insular #60 2011
- Inter Insular #61 2012
- Inter Insular #62 2013
- ICC Europe
- Europe T20 Div 1 Sussex 2013
- ICC Europe Division 2 Scotland 2006
- ICC Europe Division 2 Guernsey 2010
- ICC Europe T20 Division 1 Guernsey/Jersey 2011
- ICC Europe Division 2 Guernsey 2008
- ICC Europe T20 Division 1 Jersey 2015
- ICC Europe Div 1 Netherlands 2018
- ICC World T20 European Finals 2019
- Europe T20 Finland 2020/2021/2022
- ICC World
- ICC World Cricket League Division 7 Guernsey 2009
- ICC World Cricket League Division 5 Malaysia 2014
- ICC World Cricket League Division 5 Singapore 2012
- ICC World Cricket League Division 6 Malaysia 2011
- ICC World Cricket League Division 6 Singapore 2006
- ICC World Cricket League Div 6 Essex 2015
- ICC World Cricket League Div 5 Jersey 2016
- ICC World Cricket League Div 5 South Africa 2017
- Guernsey Cricket Statistics
- Inter Insular 100/50 partnerships
- Inter Insular Results by Ground
- Inter Insular Wicket Partnerships
- Best Teams
- Inter Insular Comparisons
- Inter Insular Captains
- ICC Europe / WCL 100/50 partnerships
- European and World Debuts
- ICC Tournaments Results by Countries
- ICC Tournaments Best Performances
- Miscellaneous Articles
- Philip Sarre
- Jeremy Frith
- Mick (Tico) Mechem
- Micky Fooks
- The 4 teachers
- Andy Cornford
- Nic Pothas
- Charles Grieve
- GH Smit
- Jamie Nussbaumer
- Tim Ravenscroft
- David Nussbaumer
- Lee Savident
- Stuart Le Prevost
- Robert Osborne-Smith
- David Piesing
- Alan Bisson
- Capt Le Prevost stands down
- GJ Rich
- Tony Taylor
- Warren Barrett
- Pierre Le Cocq
- Ricky Mills
- Mike Webber
- Robin Roussel
- Ian Damarell
- Pete Vidamour
- Glenn Milnes
- Alan Lewis
- Miles Dobson
- Keith Howick
- REH Anthony
- SBR Mackay
- Best Teams
- Bill Druce
- Ashley Wright
- Matt Stokes
- Will Fazakerley
- Vernon Collenette
- Benches for KGV
- Albert Geary
- Roger Self
- Great Elizabethans
- Cricketer Dec 2018 Guernsey v Jersey
- CJH Rawlinson
- Ernest Henry Charles Yates
- Bill Robilliard
- Vince Chapell
- Ben Ferbrache
- Tom Veillard 5 card trick
- George Bailey
- Ralph Anthony
- Guernsey Sports Top 100
- Elizabeth College Pavilion
- Guernsey’s three cricket grounds
- King George V Developments
- Guernsey Cricket 1869-1900
- A C K Day
- Eliz Coll cricketers who died in WW2
- Eric Waldron
- Team of the Decade 2019
- CI Sports Awards 2019
- Elizabeth College take on the world
- Three days of Glory
- Jersey – don’t bother
- All England v Channel Islands 1866
- C Gervaise-Brazier
- Andy Biggins
- Inter Insular Statistics Batting
- ICC Europe Statistics ODI Catches
- Inter Insular Statistics Bowling
- Inter Insular Statistics Catches/ Stumpings
- Inter Insular Statistics Appearances
- Inter Insular Statistics Combined
- ICC Europe Statistics ODI Batting
- ICC Europe Statistics ODI Bowling
- ICC Europe Statistics ODI Appearance
- ICC Europe ODI Statistics Combined
- ICC Europe Statistics T20 Batting
- ICC Europe Statistics T20 Bowling
- ICC Europe Statistics T20 Catches
- ICC Europe Statistics T20 Appearances
- ICC Europe T20 Statistics Combined
- ICC World Statistics Batting
- ICC World Statistics Bowling
- ICC World Statistics Catches / Stumpings
- ICC World Statistics Appearances
- ICC World Statistics Combined
- All Senior Statistics Batting
- All Senior Statistics Bowling
- All Senior Statistics Catches
- All Senior Statistics Appearances
- All senior Statistics Combined
- Jersey Int Ins Statistics
- Jersey Int Ins Statistics Batting
- Jersey Int Ins Statistics Bowling
- Jersey Int Ins Statistics Catches/Stump
- Jersey Int Ins Statistics Appearances
- Jersey Int Ins Statistics Combined
- Jersey Int Ins T20 Batting
- Jersey Int Ins T20 Bowling
- Jersey Int Ins T20 Catches/Stump
- Jersey Int Ins T20 Appearance
- Jersey Int Ins T20 Combined
- Inter Insular Results
- Inter Insular Best Performances
- Inter Insular Man-of-the-match awards
- Inter Insular Timeline
- Inter Insular Dismissals
- Inter Insular Dates
- Inter Insular Trophies
- Capped players by type
- Inter Insular T20 Batting
- Inter Insular T20 Bowling
- Inter Insular T20 Catch
- Inter Insular T20 Appearance
- Inter Insular T20 Combined
- ICC Tournament results
- Contact Us
Inter Insular #43 1994
The match was played at Grainville, Jersey
on Sunday 14th August 1994
for the Tetley Bitter Challenge Trophy
55 overs per side
Umpires Owen Allen (Guernsey) and Doug Ferguson (Jersey)
Scorers Richard Gauvain (Guernsey) and N Godden (Jersey)
Toss won by Jersey who elected to bat
Jersey won by 116 runs
|Jersey innings||Runs||Balls||Mins||4s||6s||SR||Guernsey bowling||Ov||Mdn||Runs||Wkts||W||Nb||SR||ER|
|Extras (b7, lb9, w4, nb3)||23|
|Total (for 9 wkts in 55 overs)||229|
|Fall of wickets|
|1-4(Jones),2-22(S Carlyon),3-75(Jenner),4-85(Blampied),5-124(Carpenter),6-148(T Carlyon),7-195(Searson),8-216(Horton),9-222(Reynolds)|
|Guernsey innings||Runs||Balls||Mins||4s||6s||SR||Jersey bowling||Ov||Mdn||Runs||Wkts||W||Nb||SR||ER|
|+M C C Webber||c||Searson||b||Giles||4||36||43||0||0||11.1||Giles||12.5||2||31||5||0||0||15||2.5|
|R Headington||c||Carpenter||b||Giles||2||5||6||0||0||40.0||T Carlyon||3||1||16||0||1||0||5.3|
|G J Rich||c||T Carlyon||b||Reynolds||2||9||23||0||0||22.2|
|R E H Anthony||not||out||18||34||36||4||0||52.9|
|M E Kinder||c||Short||b||Giles||2||17||21||0||0||11.8|
|Extras (b2, lb6, w2, nb0)||10|
|Total (in 44.5 overs)||113|
|Fall of wickets|
‘Selectors are still pondering – which 11 from 14’ by Richard Hamilton
Guernsey’s selectors are keeping their cards close to their chests in the build-up to the Carlsberg Trophy match next Sunday, announcing 14 names from which the side will be chosen next Thursday evening. The squad named is as follows: Mark Clapham (captain), Ralph Anthony, Peter Vidamour, Ian Damarell, Vince Kenny, Richard Headington, Mike Webber, Gary Kimber, Gary Rich, Rob Turville, David Hearse, Lee Savident, Mike Kinder and Miles Dobson.
The outcome of the selectors deliberations will be interesting as they decide on the options available to them and their conversation could revolve around the number and type of bowlers required for the trip. For example, do they go into the game with one or two spinners, If they take two, the side will also have two outstanding batsmen in Gary Rich and Ralph Anthony, but whether they feel two will be necessary remains to be seen. The second question will be whether to take two or three seamers. By taking two and backing them up with both the spinners plus the capable skills of Richard Headington and Lee Savident they would be able to include an extra batsman to counter Jersey’s attack. This would be the tactic I would adopt, offering great flexibility plus a possibly more nimble fielding side, but the selectors will probably feel differently.
If they decide to take just the one spinner then Mike Kinder would be the obvious choice for a place, his accuracy and reliability making him a banker for his club and Island skipper, who no doubt would like to have the college master at his side. Another adoption may be to take a fourth seamer but that would be the biggest surprise given the other options available.
The batting is beginning to have a settled look and the only real question is whether to pick both Gary Kimber and Mike Webber. Webber looks likely to get the nod for the gloves but Kimber’s hard hitting style may yet earn him a place in the middle order. Whatever they decide few could argue with the 14 players named although the arguments will no doubt rage come their final decision when it is announced on Friday morning.
There were few surprises in the Jersey side named to face the Sarnians, with an all-seam attack giving them an extremely strong batting line-up. With the Carlyon brothers plus Horton, Giles, Reynolds and Searson, Jersey have an attack which has caused great problems for the Guernsey batsmen over recent years. However, the lack of variation may prove to be their downfall and if the Guernsey batsmen get in they could have an enjoyable day. The batting has a settled appearance with the Carlyons plus skipper Ward Jenner, Jones and Blampied likely to fill the first five places. Behind them the side has a number of all rounders as well as the prodigious middle order hitting of Jason Carpenter, which is sure to make life uncomfortable for one or two of the Guernsey attack.
The side in probable batting order will be as follows: Chris Jones, Steve Blampied, Steve Carlyon, Ward Jenner (captain), Tony Carlyon, Simon Short, Jason Carpenter, Chris Searson, Mark Reynolds, Paul Horton, Jon Giles. 12th man Micky Smith.
Mark Reynolds Steve Blampied Chris Jones Jon Giles Paul Horton Jason Carpenter Micky Smith (12th man)
Chris Searson Ward Jenner Simon Short Tony Carlyon Steve Carlyon Mr Phillps (Carlsberg/Tetley) GEP
‘Kenny out: No nets no match? by Rob Batiste
Vince Kenny and Dave Hearse have been omitted from the Island squad to take on Jersey this weekend, the Cobo batsman possibly ‘cooking’ his chances of another Island cap by skipping squad nets last Sunday morning.
Mick Fooks, chairman of the Island selectors, wouldn’t confirm or deny it, but it is well known that the selectors were deeply unhappy with Kenny’s non-appearance at nets.
A decision on the final XI won’t be made until the morning of the match, but it would seem likely that the unlucky odd one out will be one of the seam bowlers or all-rounder Gary Rich. Mike Webber has won the nod to keep wicket, while Gary Kimber will probably play as a lower-order batsman.The slimmed down squad is as follows: Mark Clapham (captain), Miles Dobson, Mike Kinder, Ian Damarell, Mike Webber (Optimists), Peter Vidamour, Gary Rich, Gary Kimber (Cobo), Richard Headington, Lee Savident (Rovers), Ralph Anthony (Salemites), Rob Turville (St Saviours).
‘Guernsey want the bitter to taste sweet’ by Rob Batiste
They once played for whisky (Haig) and for several years for probably the best lager in the world, tomorrow at Grainville the cream of Channel islands cricket will be playing for bitter or, to be more precise, the Tetley Bitter Challenge Trophy.
But Guernsey and Jersey will be playing for more than a new ‘pot’ and a case or two of Yorkshire brew, they will be playing for personal pride and the victory which will provide the victors with the series lead.
Ahead of tomorrow’s 55-over game – which starts at 10.30am – the inter-insular cricket series could not be more even. The Shadows’ Apache was top of the charts when Jersey won the first proper inter-island encounter in 1960 and 34 years on both islands have 12 wins under their belts and there has been the little matter of 12 draws. Thankfully the fixture became limited overs in 1978 and the record in the intervening period is 9-7 in their favour.
Mark Clapham’s side are desperate to prevent a hat-trick of Jersey wins tomorrow. Six weeks ago I would not have given them a cat in hells’ chance of us denying les crapauds their third straight win, but since the inter-league debacle the Island side has rediscovered their pride and players found form. Having said that Clapham’s team still start underdogs.
Guernsey’s record at Grainville is not great. We have lost four of the last five matches at Jersey’s HQ as our players struggle to come to terms with a pitch with pace and bounce of the like the Guernsey boys seldom come across. As I have argued before our main problem lies in finding bowlers capable of troubling a Jersey batting line-up which has a tail as long as a Boxer Dog’s. For Guernsey to win tomorrow it may need an inspired performance from one of our bowlers. Regrettably it certainly has not happened in recent inter-insulars. The best figures by a Guernsey bowler in the last two games against Jersey has been David Hearse’s two for 36. Worse than that, there has been only one three-wicket-plus performance by a Guernseyman this decade and that was Miles Dobson’s six for 37 at the College Field three years ago. This dearth of wickets (just 20 since 1990) will have been a concern for the Island selectors who have chosen more or less the side I would have picked.
They were probably right to ‘sack’ Vince Kenny for failing to make a net practice as they most certainly did even if they won’t admit it in public. Why? Because when you are underdogs, having a good team spirit is even more important. Everyone must be seen to be pulling their weight – even if it is only in practice. Allowing individuals to go their own way does not help matters. For that reason the Cobo opener is being made to pay. It is a shame, Guernsey could have done with him. After all, he scored 63 at Grainville in his only other appearance two years ago.
Clapham, though, should still have sufficient batting at his disposal to achieve a good score. Mike Webber, back in the side after a four-year gap, will open the batting and have as his partner Peter Vidamour. Lee Savident, who was not born when Webber made the first of his 12 Island appearances back in 1973, will go in first drop, then debutant Richard Headington at four and Ian Damarell at five. Headington’s ‘discovery’, if you could call it that, has been a major boost to Guernsey’s fortunes. He sees the ball early, plays quick bowling very well and always looks assured at the crease. Sure, Evening League is not his forte, but this is proper cricket we are playing here and when set he is well capable of scoring quickly.
Gary Kimber and the captain will probably fill places six and seven in the order, and I very much hope that Gary Rich is included at eight with Ralph Anthony as nine. Rich may be short of runs this summer but his bowling offers variety and just as important he is the best fielder in the 12-man squad. He could miss out though and along with Rob Turville and Mike Kinder is the most vulnerable. The final decision on who drops out will be made after an inspection of the pitch and should the unlucky one out be one of the seamers we can expect Andy Biggins to act as 12th man. Whoever plays, the new skipper will urge his bowlers to keep it tight. Wayward bowling at Grainville means lots of ball chasing. We can expect Grainville to be as flat and hard a pitch you would wish to come across and bowlers who spray it about will be punished. As there is no limitation on bowlers Guernsey may be brave and field just two frontline seamers and two spinners and use Savident and Headington as back-up. That would be my policy, anyway, because Guernsey needs as long a batting line-up as possible and to be as slick as possible in the field. Incidentally, Guernsey’s umpire tomorrow will be Owen Allen, who will be standing for the first time in the fixture.
The Guernsey team before the match at Grainville GEP
R Turville M Kinder A Biggins L Savident P Vidamour G Kimber M Webber
G Rich R Headington R Anthony M Clapham M Dobson I Damarell
Jersey Evening Post
‘Carpenter wins big game call’ by Paul Le Conte
Caesareans and Police batsman Jason Carpenter was the only new cap when the island selectors named the expected side to meet Guernsey in the senior inter -insular at Grainville on Sunday week.
The main debate at last night’s short selection meeting was over whether Paul Horton or Barry Middleton should fill the last place in the XI. Horton just got the vote due to his fielding and potential with the bat.
The Jersey captain, Ward Jenner, said he was looking forward to extending his 100 per cent record at the helm in senior inter-insulars. ‘I am confident of completing the hat-trick and extending the general dominance over Guernsey cricket that has been seen in recent years. It was a very quick meeting, ten of the players pick themselves and the only question was over the second opening bowler slot. I felt a little bit sorry for Barry Middleton, he has bowled very well this season, but Paul Horton’s batting and fielding were felt to be important factors and tipped the balance in his favour. The other disappointment is the fact that there are not many people banging on the door for a place. We are fortunate to have 10 or 11 strong players but if one or two of them were to be injured there are no obvious candidates to fill the breach. We have a long batting order and enough variety in the bowling to cope with any eventualities on the day. It is also a good fielding side.
As to new cap Jason Carpenter, Jenner said, ‘He has really shown this season what he is capable of and pushed himself forward for selection. If he bats for 20 minutes he can win a game for you.’
‘Carpenter cuts loose’ Jersey Post by Paul Le Conte
Jersey’s new cap in Sunday’s senior cricket inter-insular was a promising fast bowler until two prolapsed discs in his back forced him to concentrate on batting this season – with devastating effect.The 25 year-old police constable played in just three matches last year but has more than made amends this season. He has hammered three centuries and several other high scores all littered with boundaries and scored off relatively few deliveries. An undefeated 155 off just 65 balls for JICC v Incogniti was his biggest innings.
‘Jersey hand out a 116-run thrashing’ by Rob Batiste
Jersey’s dominance of inter-island cricket shows no signs of wilting as proved by yesterday’s 116-run thrashing of Guernsey’s best at Grainville. The trophy may have changed but the result remains the same.
Ward Jenner walked away with the new Tetley Bitter Challenge Trophy and a signed bat by the England team while Simon Short won himself an all expenses paid trip to watch all five days of the Third England-South Africa Test as his reward for a superb undefeated 55, four catches and a brilliant run out.
Taking a cynical view, the signed bat should have gone to Guernsey because it had all the hallmarks of some of national side’s recent capitulations. One Jersey selector gloated, ‘You won’t win again for years.’ That might be overstepping the mark but it is certainly back to the drawing board time again for us.
In truth, Jersey are simply too good for us at this moment in time and for that reason there is no point criticising the Guernsey team who came within a whisker of bowling the home side out on another plum pitch, but wasted all their good work in the field with another timid batting display. Again our top players caved in under pressure created by very good bowling from Jersey’s five-man seam attack.
Jon Giles, The OV’s left-arm quickie, picked up five wickets and in the 44.5 overs it required to dismiss the visitors you could count the bad balls on one hand and still have a couple of spare fingers.
Yet it had started encouragingly well for a Guernsey side led out for the first time by Mark Clapham. He lost the toss but it did not seem to matter as Mike Kinder made two early breakthroughs. Kinder’s presence in the team owed much to the heavy rain that fell on our sister island this week.
Bill Blampied’s expertly prepared pitch was not as hard and bare as expected and Kinder ousted Rob Turville for the 11th place in the team. It turned out to be a good decision. Kinder bowled unchanged for 16 overs – a couple too many I’d say – and troubled all the batsmen in picking up four wickets and series best figures. Miles Dobson, too, was threatening in his opening burst and was perhaps a little unlucky not to win strong appeals for the wicket of Steve Blampied.
Blampied had another close escape when Anthony, still under his helmet at short leg, failed to hold on to a much tougher bat-pad catch induced by Kinder. At drinks Jersey had edged on to 46 for two in 19 overs and five overs later Anthony took over from Dobson at the pavilion end and immediately spun the ball past the outside edge of Ward Jenner’s bat. Jenner was soon into his stride though and raced on to 40 with seven boundaries.
The Jersey captain was silencing the visiting support on the ‘hill’ with every four, but when kinder got the ball past his bat and umpire Owen Allen supported the lbw appeal with a raised finger the ‘Guerns’ rediscovered their voices and produced a brief rendition of ‘bye bye, Wardie, Wardie, bye bye.’ The humour was lost on the Jersey skipper who clearly felt the official had erred and there was more head shaking from the home camp when on 85 the Guernsey team went up for a catch at the wicket and Blampied was on his way for 30, whether he liked it or not.
By now the younger Carlyon had resumed his innings and the fall of Blampied’s wicket signalled the entrance of Jersey’s own Gilbert Jessop, Jason Carpenter. The Jersey policeman, Robocop to his mates, looked consumed by nerves as he took guard against Kinder. For a while he struggled to lay bat on the ball and Guernsey were convinced they had him bowled before he scored. Umpire Allen’s view was obstructed by the batsman, however, and would not confirm that the ball had clipped the off bail.
‘He’s bowled,’ exclaims Mike Kinder but to no avail GEP
Not that Carpenter lasted too long. In the first over after lunch he tried to hoist Gary Rich’s off spin into the tennis courts and merely succeeded in holing out to Lee Savident at mid-wicket.
Rich, introduced for the last over before lunch, was to turn in his best spell yet in inter-insulars, extracting turn and bounce to trouble all the batsmen. By the finish he too had four wickets under his belt and it would have been five had Richard Headington held on to a catch at long-off.
Jersey’s 55-over total of 229 for nine on a wicket improving by the minute should have been within Guernsey’s range, but it required the visitors making a solid start. That, unfortunately, did not happen.
Mike Webber and Peter Vidamour looked safe enough and the Cobo man unleashed two spanking drives off Horton. But on 15 it all began to go horribly wrong. Vidamour failed to keep down a ball that climbed on him and short leg took the catch. Nine runs later Webber edged Giles to first slip and on 26 Guernsey lost two more wickets, Headington for two and Damarell for a duck.
Jon Giles sends down another delivery whilst Mark Clapham looks to back up GEP
The curtains were closing quickly on Guernsey and although Lee Savident and Mark Clapham battled it out to tea, Guernsey were already out of contention at 46 for four with just 30 overs remaining. One ball after tea it really was all over, Savident waved a bat airily at Mark Reynolds’ first ball of the match and Short snapped up the catch. At 54 Gary Kimber was thrown out by Short’s underarm effort to the bowler’s end although the skipper hit out determinedly for 31, he too edged to the Foster’s Oval bound Short. Rich mistimed a hook and went for two, Kinder became Short’s fourth victim and Dobson swung wildly and was bowled. All very sad.
‘Caught Short’ by Paul Le Conte
Rampant Jersey romp to 116 run triumph over the old enemy.
Jenner looked set for a big score when he was given out leg before on 40, a decision that caused some discussion among the crowd. As did Blampied’s, given caught behind soon afterwards. If Jersey’s batsmen felt aggrieved the Guernsey bowler Mike Kinder couldn’t believe what happened in a strange incident bowling to Carpenter. Carpenter played at a ball and missed, Guernsey keeper Mike Webber was standing up to the stumps and a bail fell to the ground, The Guernsey players thought Carpenter had been bowled but he stood his ground. After consultation between the two umpires he was given not out.
‘Time to act: Money must be spent’ by Rob Batiste
Simon Short can afford a wry smile. There he is at the Foster’s Oval enjoying an all-expenses visit to the Test while reflecting on his man-of-the-match performance which did more than anything to wreck Guernsey’s hopes at Grainville last Sunday.
‘Shorty’ will be all the more happy in the knowledge that his efforts and those of the likes of Jon Giles, who claimed five wickets, will have again provoked the same old Sarnian outcry of ‘Where do we go from here?’ May well he laugh. Guernsey cricket is in a trough and, more alarmingly, showing no signs of emerging. The problems afflicting Guernsey cricket are numerous and have been well reported in this column before. But now it really is time to act before Jersey make it another hat-trick of wins and make my life covering inter-insular sport even more unbearable. Being trounced at rugby is something we’ve come to accept, but to be stuffed at both football and cricket too. What is going on?
The Guernsey Cricket Council met for their monthly meeting this week and spent the evening putting the game here to rights. Before long a working paper on the state of Guernsey cricket will emerge and in that report it is likely to highlight its poor structure, poor pitches and poor attitude of many top players. May I, in the meantime, make my own suggestions to improve our standing.
Firstly it is imperative to sort out our pitches. One good grass square per 1 000 players is a disgrace. The Guernsey Cricket Association must dig deep into their pockets to sort out the mess. Why them? Because they have the money – the Guernsey Cricket Council have none – and their efforts to find their own ground appears to have about as much chance in succeeding as Guernsey have of beating Jersey at cricket!
The time has come for GCA to pump their financial resources into improving facilities at the grounds they currently utilise. There is no reason why a small square of say six strips cannot be laid alongside the Nottingham wicket at King George V Field. In addition, GCA must vigorously pursue the proposal to fund the re-siting of the square at the Memorial Field and the necessary drainage work. Should this happen, and my information is that it could be carried out at the cost of somewhere in the region of £25000 (for both grounds), the new wickets could be ready for the season after next.
But as Des Lynam would say, ‘How do they do that?’ It’s simple. The area is dug out and suitable drainage is laid, including the use of a cinder type hard core. Soil-cum-sand is then put on top followed by a pre-grown top surface. There is ample room at KGV to lay a square. The only problem I foresee is deciding who should pay for its upkeep. But, where there is a will there is a way, and I believe it is the GCA’s duty to do so. Nor should the spending end there.
The GCA must also tear up the existing Nottingham wicket and replace it with a wicket that has greater pace, more bounce and allows a fair contest between batsmen and bowlers. The ‘carpet’ in place is certainly not fair and is breeding poor cricketers. For a start it does nothing for the quicker bowlers. It is so slow that there is not a bowler in Guernsey capable of shaking up even the average Division One player. Consequently runs come too easily for our top batsmen. They score ‘soft’ runs. Very rarely so they have to bat under pressure. That, plus the fact that they play so little cricket on grass, means that when they are thrown into the cauldron of an inter-insular, they succumb to the pressure.
I happen to believe that Guernsey have batsmen every bit as good as Jersey but they are not realising their potential. The batsmen have to be made to work for their runs, even if that means playing on grass wickets that favour bowlers. Make no mistake about it. Guernsey’s cricket facilities are embarrassingly bad in comparison with Jersey’s. While Jersey’s best can look forward to games on cracking wickets at Grainville, F.B.Fields and Les Quennevais, which has two squares, what is available regularly to out best?
A scenic setting but the blandest of wickets at KGV, a joke of an artificial strip at Memorial Field which is better suited to midgets or moles and a Les Varendes grass wicket which can only be used if you happen to be playing Pilgrims.
Is it no wonder many of our best players think twice before turning out at weekends? Were it not for the carrot of an ‘Upton’ place, our Afternoon League competition would be even less competition than it is now. No, we have got to play our weekend league cricket on grass wickets where batsmen and bowlers really learn their trade. That may necessitate a more streamlined league with less teams, but so be it. That league also needs to be club orientated and not a bunch of hybrid teams such as Old Elizabethans, Old Intermedians, Exiles etc. I was not in favour of it a year ago, when first mooted, and I have not changed my mind in the meantime.
On the subject of an Island training squad (as suggested in Sports Post elsewhere on this page) I have my doubts whether it will work. There is no problem choosing a training squad and targeting the best young talent in doing so, the real hard bit is getting them there! I can think of half a dozen classy young players who should be challenging for an Island spot, but none of them can be bothered to put themselves out. A lot of average players, like myself (excuse the bragging), would give their right arm for an Island cap. Unfortunately, not all players have similar ambition. How you solve this apathy among the young, I know not, but I do know we can improve our cricket by investing money in it. Let’s just hope the powers that be act soon.
GCA caps have not been awarded for four years and it seems we may have seen the last of the treasured old green-and-white hooped cap presented to 58 players between 1960 and 1990. From now on players who represent Guernsey (the full side) will be awarded a baggy green Island cap. Those who played in the 1993 and 1994 fixtures will receive the new cap free of charge, but anyone who won a cap in 1991 and 1992 will have to pay for theirs due to a lack of Guernsey Council funds.