Cult Cricketers – Fuller Pilch

27 Mar

To celebrate the final week of the cricket world cup….for no real reason or logic…

He stood over 6 foot, owned a pub, wore an enormous hat, had a stroke named after him, features in flashman, dominated the bowling and was battings first superstar.

Pilch played on awful pitches against round arm bowling but became a legend through his batting. Having dropped his bowling early in his career his forward strokes and the severity of his punishment to on side bowling made him a favourite. A top hatted Steve Waugh ? Pilch famously won a single wicket challenge from Tom Marsden in 1833 which he won by an innings and 70 runs. It made him an instant celebrity. As if to rub home his dominance he beat Marsden again a few months later by 130 runs. At that time single wicket was probably on a par with 20/20. Mass entertainment with big money at stake. Pilch was cool and energetic.

IN 1834 Pilch topped the batting averages with 43, the second placed player was at 18!

Then he took on a pub in Kent to allow him to play for Kent and fortunately the pub had a cricket ground that hosted many championship matches…imagine that!. He was considered the best batsman pre Grace. He looked cool , batted at 3 and he was an athletic fielder in the covers. I’m off to practice my Pilch Poke in the garden.




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