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  • Bill Voce Cricket Autographs

    Posted on October 24, 2012 by Selby

    Bill Voce Cricket Autographs are always in demand, however it is the series/match that the Autograph is associated with that is of interest to the collector.

    Voce is perhaps best remembered for his part in the infamous 1932/33 Bodyline series and as always cricket memorabilia from this series is top of many collectors’ wish lists.

    Of particular interest to most Bodyline series collectors are tour itineries, original real postcards, panoramic ground photographs, signed team sheets, action photographs and pictures taken of the Orient Line steam ship Orontes which took the Captain Douglas Jardine and the MCC side to Ceylon and Freemantle.

    However his best performances were in the 1936/37 Ashes series in Australia, this particular tour in conjunction with the 1932/33 Bodyline series are the most interesting from a collector’s point of view.

    The 1st test Australia v England at Brisbane on the 4/12/1936 is a good example 6/41 in the 1st innings and 4/16 in the 2nd following on at Sydney with another outstanding display which destroyed the early batting order.

    Bill Voce (1909 – 1984) hails from Kirby – in – Ashfield a market town in Nottinghamshire. He made his First Class debut for Notts against Glos in 1927. His Test debut followed in 1930 when he was selected for the West Indies tour Captained by the Hon FSG Calthorpe, where his left arm medium pace  achieved 4/79 in the 2nd Test followed by 7/70 in the second innings at Queens Park Oval Port of Spain. It is performances such as this, especially in a debut series that make any cricket collectables especially attractive.

    I currently own signed completed official scorecards from the 2nd Test and the 4th at Kingston.

    The following year 1931 Voce took 123 wickets averaging 19.7 runs per wicket which is very economical bowling in anyone’s book, the next year in the run up to the Bodyline series he achieved 136 wickets at an even better average of 16.82 he was now assured of his place with Harold Larwood on the 1932/33 Australian tour.

    The MCC were determined that England bring home the Ashes  from the winter tour of 1932-33.

    Douglas Jardine was appointed Captain; he was convinced that Larwood and Voce were key to dealing with the Australian batsmen, primarily Don Bradman. The technique they planned to use was known as leg theory, involving bowling fast rising, short pitched deliveries on or just outside the leg stump, not only intimidating the batsman but creating the chance of leg side deflections to the cordon of close in fielders behind square leg.

    The end result was a Series win for England Don Bradman who had maintained an enviable batting average during his career of 99.9 showed a series average of 56.6 which is still excellent by any standards. England regained the Ashes with a 4/1 margin nearly dividing two continents in the process. It is notable that England won the 1st test at Sydney by 10 wickets where leg theory was not deployed, whilst Gubby Allen took 8 wickets for 131 in the 3rd test also using conventional bowling.

    Voce played his last Test against Australia v England 3rd test at Melbourne in 1947 and continued playing with Notts up to 1952.

    He played in 27 Tests with a tally of 13.5 with the bat and a bowling average of (98 wks) 27.9.

    All autographs from this period are of interest specifically signed team sheets and photographs, a signed action photograph of Bill Voce and Harold Larwood would make a great item of cricket memorabilia.

    I would be interested to hear from any readers who have Bodyline Series collections.

    Tony Selby

     

     


    This post was posted in Cricket memorabilia and was tagged with cricket collectables, Ashes Memorabilia, bodyline series, australian cricket memorabilia, don bradman cricket memorabilia, bill voce cricket memorabilia

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