2020 may have been an unprecedented season for all Cricket clubs across the country from social distancing & hand sanitiser to match teas purchased from local petrol stations at 11.55am! However, for South Wilts CC, it marked 30 years since our 1990 league triumph.
The atmosphere around Lower Bemerton in April 1990 was “quietly confident”. It was apparent that the team had “all bases covered”. Dave Parry was the captain & one of the most eloquent stroke players in the Southern League .. He did not disappoint as he led from the front.
The campaign did not start well for the side as they travelled to Hursley Park for the season opener and were rattled out for 99, chasing 136.
There was one positive though, it was clear that South Wilts had found a gem of a South African quick bowler in the form of overseas player, Angus Small. He blew 4 of the Hursley Park batsman away with his raw pace and set the jungle drums beating, a few sleepless nights for opposition openers were to follow ….
Neil Prigent (formerly of Chichester Priory Park), gave South Wilts encouragement in the next match against Gosport Borough, as he hit an unbeaten 39* and took 4-28 with his left arm seam, amongst them the scalps of prolific batsman Gavin McRae and Mick Swain for no score.
The evergreen Peter Sadler ensured success away to Havant hitting 55* after Parry (72) had put right an indifferent start.
By the end of May South Wilts had slipped quietly into third place after the spin of Brian White 5-23 had dismantled the 1989 winners, Old Tauntonians. White was to enjoy himself with the bat seven days later – his 102 in the defeat of Calmore Sports at Loperwood being his first league century for seven years and as it turned out his last.
In Mid June South Wilts had inched into second place behind Trojans, with a run of 5 successive wins, including a nail biter against Winchester CC when Bob Cowlard emerged from the pavilion at number nine to crash a spectacular 49* & secure the victory by 2 wickets.
A century from Parry at Andover where Angus Small , Neil Prigent and Geoff Osborn shared the wickets lifted South Wilts to the top of the league. It was the first time in Ten seasons that the team had led the league. A ninth success was achieved against Alton, courtesy of a typicaly aggressive onslaught from Parry (133) and Prigent 53*. A slight hiccup at Bournemouth followed as the champions in waiting were rattled out for 83, whilst chasing 172. .
The blistering pace of Angus Small (5-13) put pay to Petersfield and restored momentum in the campaign. Three weeks from the end of the season a decisive win put Trojans out of the running and put the Champagne firmly on ice for South Wilts. A performance of championship quality against Waterlooville followed, after a century opening stand between White (70) and Bulpitt (65) set the stage for 89 from the Captain, Dave Parry. Five wickets from the indefatigable Osborn sealed it and South Wilts were crowned the 1990 Champions!!
Dave Parry - 588 Runs @ 49.00
Brian White - 394 Runs @ 32.83
J Bulpitt - 334 Runs @ 20.88
P Sadler - 250 runs @ 25.00
Neil Prigent - 241 Runs @ 21.91
Angus Small - 50 wickets @ 13.84
Neil Prigent - 43 wickets @ 13.44
Geoff Osborn - 27 wickets @ 15.85
Brian White - 21 wickets @ 16.86
Andy Cooke - 5 wickets @ 35.00
v Hursley Park (lost by 36 Runs)
V Gosport CC (won by 27 runs)
v Havant CC (won by 3 wickets)
v Old Tauntonians (won by 6 wickets)
v Calmore (won by 10 runs)
v Winchester (won by 2 wickets)
v Andover (won by 67 runs)
v Poole (won by 10 wickets)
v Portsmouth (won by 28 runs)
v Alton (won by 78 runs)
v Bournemouth (lost by 87 runs)
v Petersfield (won by 6 wickets)
v New Milton (lost by 40 runs)
v US Portsmouth (lost by 2 wickets)
v Lymington (won by 3 wickets)
v Trojans (won by 6 wickets)
v Waterlooville (won by 91 runs)