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West Indies Cricket Memorabilia

Posted on February 8, 2012 by Selby There have been 0 comments

West Indies Cricket Memorabilia
The Caribbean Islands are home to Crickets most illustrious team, “The Windies.” So many talented Cricketers have represented the West Indies creating an excellent opportunity for anyone wishing to build a portfolio of West Indies Cricket Memorabilia.
Interesting Cricket Collectables which are currently sought after include, Autographs, Tour Brochures, Pictures, Dinner Menus, Cricket programmes, Scorecards, Signed Cricket Bats, Real Photo Postcards, handwritten material and more recently Presentations and Montages. Many of these authentic items are available at Auction Houses or through our own Cricket Memorabilia online shop.
Early beginnings:
Inter Colonial Cricket matches had been played on the islands from as far back as 1865, In that same year Barbados are reported have defeated British Guiana (Demerara) at Garrison Savannah in Bridgetown dismissing Demerara for 22 and 38 respectively. In 1884 a number of neighbouring islands in the Caribbean decided to put together a Cricket side with a view to Touring the US and Canada. Two years later a newly formed West Indies Cricket Team made its first overseas tour. The tour which started in Montreal visited Ottawa, Toronto and Hamilton. Won 6, lost 5, drew 2. From there it was on to the USA where they played three matches versus Philadelphia, who were regarded as a more experienced side, having played a number of International matches, only the previous year in 1885 defeating an England eleven led by EJ Sanders by 109 runs.
Despite an 18 run win at Longwood Cricket Club playing 12 per side, the tourists were defeated in the 7 match series which included an 8 wicket loss on Staten Island not helped by CJP Wilsons bowling: 4 for 7 off nine overs.
Sports correspondents from the Philadelphia News reported the Tourists as outclassed.
In 1894/5 an amateur England side led by R Slade Lucas contested 16 matches in the Caribbean. Travelling out with compliments of the Royal Mail Packet Company, sailing on the Medway the visitors rested on the 12 day voyage to Bridgetown before being made welcome by Cricket clubs on a number of neighbouring Caribbean islands. Cricket Memorabilia from this tour including photographs of the Medway signed by the Team are good examples of sought after collectables.
The tour results:
10 won, 4 lost, 2 drawn was the final tally for the tour however of the 8 first class matches 4 were won 3 lost.
Over the next few years a number of International matches where played at home and on tours until finally things were put on a more formal footing with the formation of the West Indies Cricket Board in the 1920s.
A stronger Barbados team toured England in 1923 led by HBG Austin, winning 12 matches with Barbadian George Challenor (1888 – 1947) scoring 1556 runs in First Class Matches including six centuries. A quote from George’s obituary (age 59) in Wisden “His admirable batting did much toward raising cricket in West Indies to Test match standard". Memorabilia is available from this series and should be collected. George had already toured England in 1906 and would again in 1928.
The WICB became a full member of the International Cricket Council in 1926 and were granted Test Status in1928. West Indians already passionate about Cricket were about to move up a gear or two.
The West Indies Cricket Emblem is an unusual welcoming design featuring a palm tree on a tropical island amended in 1999 to include a set of Cricket stumps. It typifies the easy laid back attitude of their splendid players.
The reason I refer to these early tours is to demonstrate the amount of collectable material available if one looks for it, Cricket Memorabilia from these early Matches especially up to WW2 is very desirable.
Of particular interest to me to add to my portfolio are the following series:
1939 West Indies v England third test Oval – Weekes (137), Constantine 5/ 75,( Hutton 165)
1947/48 West Indies v England – Gubby Allen, Ken Cranston, Jim Laker 7/103
1950 West Indies v England - Ramadhin, Valentine, Rae,( Worrell 261, Walcott 168) 3/1
1960/61 West Indies v Australia – Frank Worrell
1961/62 West Indies v India (5/0) Gibbs, Sobers, Durani
The best Team in the world: The team formed by Frank Worrell in the early Sixties was regarded between 1962 -67 as the side to beat.
West Indies Cricket Memorabilia from the above era is particularly attractive as are some of Series I have listed above. My favourite would be 1950 West Indies v England.
Since the Sixties the West Indies Cricket Team have had many successes and are regarded as the most charismatic team to watch, their competitive spirit, passion for the game, calypso music, bright colours, so much talent and crowd participation make each Test Series exciting, fantastic to watch at Lords and spectacular in the Caribbean.
Good luck with your collecting
Tony Selby

Cricket Memorabilia

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