THE SEASONED CAMPAIGNERS
A look at their faces and that aging body language, and one would definitely be in for a second guess, can these guys play?
But like old wine , they are seasoned through years and years
of mental as well as physical struggles. Even today a casual late cut, a fierce cover drive, an elegant leg glance,
a thumping straight drive, a delightful hook would, time and again, remind you of their feisty yesteryears.
Perhaps their bodies might refuse to go any more for sliding stops.. their arms might be giving an indication of a tired attitude. But they would try every time, if the occasion arose...just for the sake of the game, just for CRICKET.
Here is a list of some of those famous "golden oldies" from bygone years. Most are no longer regularly with us on the cricket field, and may not even be in Seattle today, but should be remembered by all Seattle cricketers for their past accomplishments.
----Soumendra (Tiki) Mohanty, 1998 Seattle Cricketer
NEARLY 1000 PERSONS have played for SEATTLE CRICKET CLUB in the last 50 years. Space permits us to name only a few...but this section honors the unnamed many, without whom Seattle Cricket Club could never have existed.
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FROM THE '60s AND EARLIER
Only vaguely remembered by even the senior-most members of the club, Mr. Willesden was one of the oldest Seattle cricketers, the only one presumed to have been active during the "social" phase of Seattle cricket in the pre-WWII era of the 1930s. He was serving as Chairman of the club when in his 70s, until 1962. Present whereabouts unknown...he is presumed to be deceased.
Donald (Don) Bury
Most Seattle cricketers will remember the dignified old man who could be seen sitting quietly in his own camp chair at Dahl Playfield and then at Fort Dent Park, at almost every Seattle home game in the 80's and early 90's. His real identity, as the founder of Seattle cricket in the late 1940s, became known only after he passed away in 1995. Don Bury was a true cricketer...one of the best...and his bequest of his books to the Seattle Cricket Club speaks to his commitment to the local game.
Emeritus Professor Hamied
Played for Seattle Cricket Club in the 1946-50 era.
Now 76 and a renowned figure in the Ethnomusicology of South
Asia, Professor Hamied retired from the USC faculty in 1990.
While a student at the University of Washington, he played as
an all-rounder for Seattle (medium-pace bowler and opening batsman)
for three years, went on to play in Canada after graduation, and is
still an avid follower of the sport. He supplied much of the
information on the early post-war years of the Seattle Cricket Club.
From 1959 to 1962 (i.e. just before Seattle Cricket Club entered its official era) "Vasu" captained Seattle and was its best all-rounder. He returned to India, but came back to teach at Washington State University... in the 1970s, he was a founder of the WSU Cricket Club. His son played for Seattle CC in the 1980s!....Vasu is now retired, and living in Eastern Washington.
Dr John Savory
Perhaps the best batsman ever to play for Seattle (he had a batting average of 63.3 in the BCMCL First Division !), John Savory led Seattle, in its first official season in the British Columbia Mainland Cricket League (BCMCL), to its only First Division League title. He also played for the USA, and top-scored in the 1962 US-Canada Test Match. Dr. Savory is currently the top medical administration official in the State of Virginia.
Prof Mohan Nayudu
Now retired and living in Alaska, Professor Nayudu was an accomplished batsman and change bowler who captained Seattle in the mid 1950s and through the early 1960s. He is best known for having inaugurated the modern era of club cricket in Seattle (see history).
In the mid-1960s, Ajit was a devastatingly accurate fast-medium bowler and a #4 batsman, who single-handedly won matches for a then-depleted Seattle team in the BCMCL First Division. Remembered for his eccentricities, such as staring down batsmen before bowling to them....and referring to himself in the third person ("as long as Ajit Prasad is there..."). Ajit moved to the Midwest, and his present wherablouts are unknown.
One of the first Aussies to play regularly for Seattle CC in the mid 1960s, Winston was a useful change bowler, a very quick-scoring mid-order batsman, and a wit and raconteur who added a great deal of levity to the serious business of BC League cricket. Returned to Australia after obtaining his Ph. D. at the UW.
Now a businessman living in Delhi, former Doon School star Madhu was the top all-rounder in the famed Seattle Cricket team which won the First Division League title under Dr. John Savory (see above)....he averaged 42 runs and took 24 wickets, in the First Division, for each of the seasons he played for the club.
The first in a long line of Caribbean stars who have played for Seattle, Ralph Knight of Jamaica had much of the lazy grace and lightning reflexes of the legendary Worrell. He batted after Dr. Savory and M. Misra with impatient brilliance, scoring a lot of runs when in the mood. His four seasons in Seattle will be remembered for spectacle, as well as performance. His present whearabouts are unknown.
Prof. Tridib Bannerjee
Now an internationally famous senior professor of engineering at the University of Southern Calfornia, Tridib played for several seasons in the 1960s as an accomplished all-rounder. He still maintains contacts with senior members of the Seattle Cricket Club, and visits Fort Dent occasionally.
Dr Richard Benjamin
A well-known oncologist who has pioneered in cancer research and treatment, Dr. Benjamin (South Africa) was a wicket-keeper for Seattle Cricket Club in the early 1960s, and was also a useful mid-order batsman. Although he retired early from regular cricket because of his professional responsibilities, he still supports Seattle cricket.
In the mid-60's, Geoff Meston, from England, was a classic opening bat who served as a sheet-anchor around which the more aggressive batsman could build up their scores. Now retired and living in Seattle, Geoff still attends occasional cricket matches at Fort Dent Park.
One of the regular members of Seattle Cricket Club during the late 60s and into the 70s, Derek was a useful all-purpose cricketer who had also passed the MCC Umpires exam. He played occasionally, and also umpired, in friendly games into the middle and late '80s. Present wherabouts unknown.
Pete's cricketing skills were unorthodox, but he was almost as famous for his antics as his exploits on the field. Stories are still told by the old-timers about his off-beat Aussie humor, his off-the-wall batting and fielding, and his overall eccentricities. Pete retired early in the 1960s, and proceeded instead to make a few million dollars....he still attends cricket matches, and was the co-sponsor of the Crocker-Surendranath Award which is still awarded at Annual Banquets.
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FROM THE 1970s
Originally from Barbados but settled now in Ontario, arguably the best wicket-keeper/ batsman to play for Seattle. George captained Seattle to victory for several seasons, scored three centuries every year he played (for four years),and also took wicket-keeping honors in the BCMCL. Returned to Ontario where he presently resides.
Stanley, from Trinidad, set several records in the British Columbia League for stumping and catches behind the wickets. He also opened the batting for Seattle for many years, producing "fast-start" opening stands with his fluent strokeplay. He played for Seattle for 10 years, and can still be seen kibitzing at Fort Dent ! Now works for Metro as a bus repair specialist.
Former Mayor of Federal Way in the 1990s, Arun was a stalwart supporter and player for Seattle through the 60s and the 70s, and was always available during those lean years when it was often difficult to get together a side. He had several good performances as a mid-order batsman, and rescued the team from defeat on more than one occasion. Lives in Federal Way and occasionally attends Seattle cricket matches.
In the 1970s, Brian (from England) was one of the most effective medium-pace bowlers for Seattle, with a deadly off-cutter...he was also a useful late-order batsman. Led the bowling averages for Seattle for several seasons. Emigrated to Australia in the late 1970s, returned to Seattle but gave up cricket to pursue farming as his avocation. Present whereabouts are unknown.
Professor Colin Daly
A well-known engineering professor at the University of Washington, a longtime stalwart of Seattle Cricket Club, off-break bowler; created the first computer databases for the club in his labs, and was an organizer and leader in the formation of the second team in the 1970s. Still teaches at the University of Washington.
A "Light Blue" from Cambridge University, Ken Lund was one of the best fast bowlers to play for Seattle in the 1970s, and also an effective middle-order batsmen. He was selected for the US Team to play Ireland, and won the BCMCL McDonald Trophy for the top Divisional batting average in 1983 (the only Seattle batsman to accomplish the feat in any BCMCL Division). Now living in England.
An Australian all-rounder,first a grad student and then a consultant in Seattle, Doug added firepower to Seattle's fast bowling, but also scored a lot of runs in his mid-order position...once, playing back to-back games for Seattle, he scored 179 runs and took 12 wickets! Returned to Australia after playing 4 seasons in Seattle.
Inspite of his unpronounceable (Dutch) name, Rick was also an Aussie...a very consistent fast bowler and a hard-hitting mid-order batsman. Together with Ken Lund, Rick provided a potent opening attack for Seattle in the 1970s...and since both bowlers wore multi-colored headbands, a distinctive one as well! Rick played five seasons before returning to Australia, where he presently resides.
John and Chris Burrell
A father-and-son team, John a tank commander in North Africa and a
steady batsman and Chris a fast bowler....the Burrell family were a
colorful and remembered part of the Seattle cricket scene thru the
70s, as they roared past in their RV sporting the Union Jack. John is now deceased, and the whereabouts of Chris are unknown.
Official Scorekeeper for Seattle Cricket Club for 6 years in the 1970s, Kathryn was the only person to hold the official title. Having mastered the Bill Frindall system of advanced scorekeeping, Kathryn was also named official scorer for the 1978 USA-Canada test match. She kept score for the West Indies/India Test Matches in Bombay and Calcutta, and was featured in a "Times of India" article in Bombay, as well as INDIA-WEST in California. She now lives in Bellevue.
From Cambridge University, one of the deepest leg-break bowlers for
Seattle (who could bounce his leg-breaks and googlies off the grass on a matting wicket, and clean-bowl the confused batsmen!), Gerry was also a classic batsman who could defend his stumps
under the most difficult circumstances, He captained Seattle
in the late 1970s and early 1980s. Now a Marketing Manager at Boeing,
he occasionally plays in friendly matches.
A regular player from the mid-1970s all the way into the late '80s, successful businessman Mel Brady still plays occasionally for Seattle and in "friendly" games. A useful all-purpose cricketer and a strong supporter of the club, Mel (along with Colin Daly ) was the organizer and supporter of Seattle's Second Team ( see "History of Seattle Cricket").
Although he played for only one full season, Duncan was the only official "guest player" to have played for Seattle. Captain of Scottish Universities, a devastatinigly accurate leg-cutter and hard-hitting middle order batsman, he contributed greatly to Seattle's depleted line-up during his summer vacation, with an excellent all-round performance. Went back to play for MCC and Scotland, and still corresponds with old Seattle hands.
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FROM THE 1980s
From St Kitts and Nevis, one of the best all-rounders to have played
for Seattle, in the 1980s....not only one of our fastest bowlers ever,
but also a top batsman averaging in his 40s in the First Division
(2 or 3 centuries per season). At 19, he was the youngest captain of Seattle’s first team, and served for two years in that capacity.
Emerson took 7 wickets against the MCC for a BCMCL exhibition match, and was selected for US team trials. Now lives in California.
Captain of Seattle CC for consecutive seasons and played for five years in the 1980s, Satish was a hard-hitting batsman who consistently scored runs, an excellent fielder and a very effective medium-pace bowler. Taking over Seattle CC's leadership at a point of decline, he helped to turn things around by performance and leadership. Now lives in Bellevue, pursuing "other priorities" (his words).
After George Lynch in the '70s, possibly the best wicketkeeper-batsman to play for Seattle. A fluent, hard-hitting strokeplayer from Granada who also displayed amazing skills behind the wickets, Vivian captained SCC I for several years, established several records, was selected for USA team trials, and was the architect of many Seattle victories in the 1980s. He occasionally played in the '90s as well, but has effectively retired from Seattle cricket.
Another father and son combo from England.....Peter was an excellent
slow left-arm bowler, his son a batsman who captained an under-13
County side...over a 3-year period in the 1980s, they added spice and
performance to Seattle Cricket....they both played key roles in the
defeat of Brockton Point, then First Division champions, for the
Fyfe-Smith Shield in 1984. Their whereabouts are unknown.
The Honorable (Judge) Bruce Ridley
The only native-born American to captain AND play regularly for Seattle CC, through the 1980s, Bruce Ridley was an unorthodox but effective batsman, a solid wicket-keeper, and a successful captain, retiring prematurely because of soccer injuries.
Bruce also served for two years as President of the club, and was an articulate spokesman for cricket off the field. Now better known as The Honorable Judge Bruce Ridley, he lives in Spokane.
From the late '70s through the early '90s, Garnett, from Jamaica, was one of the most popular members of the Club....always ready to play, a hard-hitting batsman, and a supplier of transportation, libations and music from his roomy van which became something of a trademark. Garnett left Seattle in the early '90s, and now lives in Florida.
The only woman to have played consistently for Seattle in the past (over 6 years, in the 1980s), Miranda was awarded a bat by the club for her performance....she was a top-class fielder, and her batting (self-taught) had improved to the point where she could more than hold her own in any BCMCL Division match. Miranda now owns and runs a tea-house in Seattle.
Peter and Valentine Gnanarajan
From the late 80s and into the early 90s, Peter and Valentine, the Sri Lankan brothers, livened up the Seattle cricket scene with their all-around performances. Originally part of the "junior-based" Third Team (see "history"), they quickly graduated into the senior ranks...Valentine even skippered the Second Team in his halcyon days. Present wherabouts unknown for the past five years.
The Gannie Clan
In the late 1980s, the Gannie Clan from Guyana made a joint entry into Seattle cricket...and, for a decade, became the largest family of active cricketers in Seattle! Edan Gannie sparkled as a hard-hitting batsman, Gul Gannie was a wicket-keeper and power hitter on various Seattle teams,Osman and Omar Gannie were very useful all-rounders, and (last but by no means least) John Gannie served as vice-captain and captain of SCC II, in addition to his excellent all-around abilities. Their performances on and off the field were memorable, often excellent, sometimes controversial, but never commonplace.
Most of the Gannies no longer play regularly for Seattle--- John and Gul have been recent exceptions----their absence has, to put it mildly, been felt at Fort Dent.
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MEN FOR ALL SEASONS: THE "HARDY PERENNIALS"
Deb K. Das
Artist, poet, teacher, economist and planner, Deb Das began writing about cricket in the 1960s, covered cricket as a photojournalist in the 1970s, had his pictures and articles published in the 1980s, and was Managing Editor of CRICKETER North American Edition in the 1990s. He wrote "From Baseball to Cricket","Cricket for Baseball Players", "Cricket in America" and "History of Cricket from 700 to 1700 AD", booklets which have been published and circulated in North America and abroad.
Aslam Khan's SCC career started in the mid-60s... and still continues. In his 34 years with the club, Aslam has scored nearly 10,000 runs and taken almost 1000 wickets for Seattle. He made the BCMCL's "top ten" for both batting and bowling for several years running..was selected to play for the USA...served as President of the club for many years, and performed many other functions for the club.
Charles Benjamin has been contributing to Seattle Cricket for nearly 25 years...as an effective slow-medium bowler and consistent batsman, a skipper, and the supplier of Caribbean catering and live calypso music for SCC functions! President of SCC from 1996 to 1998, and captained many SCC teams during his long career, including SCC II in 1998.
Aslam Khan's brother Ahmed has been playing for Seattle Cricket Club without a break for at least 30 years. An aggressive batsman and occasional wicket keeper, Ahmed has played in every SCC team one time or another. His performances over the years have been uneven but always interesting...and continues to be so.
Surinder has been playing for Seattle for 25 years. A classic opening batsman and slow-medium opening bowler, he established several batting records, was selected to play for the USA, and captained several Seattle teams during his quarter-century of SCC participation.
For over 30 years, Geoff Haigh, from England, has been an active member of the Seattle Cricket Club. An unorthodox change bowler and a steady batsman, Geoff has been Chairman of the Seattle Cricket Club and was founder of the SCC Third team. He still plays regularly for Seattle III.
Kenya-born Vipul Shah has been playing for "only" 17 years. A superb if somewhat temperamental batsman, a useful change bowler AND wicket-keeper, Vipul began his career with several spectacular centuries, and skippered the Seattle team that won the Fyfe-Smith Shield in 1984 --- earning a place as a "golden oldie" although he hardly qualifies in other respects!
Also nearing twenty years as a Seattle Cricket Club player, Trinidad-born Naval Ramdin is a fluent strokemaker and slow change bowler who established several records, including the highest score (127 not out) in recent years in the BCMCL First Division for Seattle. Naval has captained the SCC First Team several times in the past few years, and continues to be a veteran sheet-anchor in Seattle's batting.
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THANKS for those MEMORIES...
This section is devoted to recalling moments...some funny, others sad, still others, inspiring....from Seattle’s cricketing past.
If you have any such stories to share, please send them to us...we will try to print the best ones in this page.
These anecdotes are based on recollections, which may not always be accurate.. corrections (dates, scores or names) should be forwarded to us...we will do our best to set the record straight.
The most exciting match that ex-Professor Hamied, now 76, recalled playing for Seattle was a 1947 game in Vancouver BC against Kerrisdale Cricket Club.
( NOTE: this club does not exist any more in the BCMCL.)
"We put them in to bat and they made 160 or so.
I opened the batting...we were suddenly looking at 80 for 9...I was still batting..."
Hamied said that "..we ended up winning the game with twenty minutes to spare". That was his third century for Seattle CC, "probably my most difficult one".
He wonders whether that unbeaten last-wicket stand of 80-plus runs has been bettered in Seattle cricket..." In all these years, it must have been..".
The BCMCL First Division championship of 1964 was not decided until the last day of the season...and then, only because Seattle’s closest competitor lost it in the final two hours.
A draw or a loss by Seattle CC would have guaranteed Brockton Point CC the First Division championship.
If Seattle won, however, Brockton would have to win to take the championship.
Seattle managed an early victory on that final day. The Seattle team went off to watch Brockton play.
As soon as they saw Seattle show up on the sidelines, Brockton realized what had happened. They tried desperately to win...threw their wickets away....lost their match...and the championship--to Seattle, which won it for the only time in its history.
Seattle Cricket Club’s opening-season match at Dahl Playfield, in 1973, was also the scene of one of its most humiliating performances.
Seattle’s opponents, Caribe CC , had offered to celebrate the occasion by bringing along a steel band for a Saturday night dance party (the match was to be played on Sunday).
The festivities went on till 3 a.m., and the next morning Seattle took the field nursing at least six separate hangovers. Against a Caribe total of 122, Seattle was all out for 19....the lowest score ever recorded by a Seattle team in an official match.
Seattle did get revenge, of a sort....later that season, it got Burrard all out for 12 runs, the lowest total score ever for an opponent in a BCMCL match.
In 1976, Seattle Cricket Club was maintaining its position in the BCMCL by batting second and fighting for draws (which were allowed in League matches).
Rowing Club CC (now called Meralomas), then the undisputed leaders of the BCMCL, decided to bat first. It declared after a quick 158 for 5, and put Seattle in with enough time on hand to get all 10 Seattle wickets.
A depleted Seattle side, with only 10 fit players, were 155 for 9 with one over to go...with the injured Ram Prasad at #11 and unable to run. (The umpire, Beaman , had refused Prasad a runner because he had not been injured in the course of play.)
Knowing a boundary would win the game for Seattle, Rowing Club skipper Roger Cloy put all his fielders in a ring around the boundary.
Aslam Khan, then on 80, miscounted the total and went for a six. The ball was dropping just short, and the Rowing Club fielder went for the catch.
The ball bounced off the fielder’s hands, and went over the boundary without touching the ground. Aslam had his "sixer"....and Seattle, its only win over Rowing Club in 10 years.
Emerson Rawlins was not only one of the fastest bowlers ever to play for Seattle; he was also known for the number of batsmen who "retired hurt" facing him.
He usually managed to get at least one batsman "retired hurt" for every bowling spell he completed for Seattle Cricket Club in the 1980s.
Against a visiting MCC Team and playing for BCMCL, Emerson retired four batsmen, probably an SCC and Canadian record.
In 1984, Seattle CC’s First Team won its qualifying Shield matches in the BCMCL Second Division, and earned the right to challenge First Division champions Brockton Point CC for the Fyfe-Smith Shield, BCMCL’s premier cricket trophy at the time.
In the past, the Fyfe-Smith finals had been unequal affairs, the First Division champions easily prevailing over the Second Division leaders. And in 1984, Brockton Point had entered the Fyfe-Smith finals as the winners of every inter-club competion in Canada that year, inside and outside BC Province. Seattle was considered a pushover.
With Seattle put in to bat, opener Vivian Harris scored a quick 48, skipper Vipul Shah added a useful 50, and Henry "Rasta-man" Harris made one of his unpredictable tail-end 30s, for a total of 178.
Then Brockton’s "all-star" batting line-up, consisting of 6 all-Canada players, was brought down by one of the best bowling and fielding performances ever put on by Seattle, including two spectacular catches by 13-year-old Paul Maycock.
Seattle won the Fyfe-Smith Shield by a margin of 35 runs.
And were there ghosts at Stanley Park from twenty years' past, smiling over that long-ago time when mighty Brockton had defaulted to upstart Seattle before, for the First Division League Championship? One wonders...
Playing for a United States team consisting of Seattle CC players, Mark Demos and Vivian Harris set a record that is unlikely to be broken in Six-a-side cricket in a while...
their unbeaten partnership of 128 runs in 5.3 overs in the 1995 International Six-a-Side tournament in Vancouver B.C.
The USA team, consisting of Mark Demos, Vivian Harris, Ranjan Bhagat, Zia Khan, Mohit Saigal and Naval Ramdin, also brought the trophy south of the border, for the only time in recent history.
In 1994, Seattle CC’s Third Team won a BCMCL League Match at Lower Brockton field in Vancouver BC with the most amazing of margins. Facing a total of 220-odd for only 2 wickets, Seattle managed a nine-wicket victory with overs to spare !
Surinderjit Singh and Habib were the Seattle batsmen doing the honours.
There is no record of so few wickets falling in any other complete BCMCL match.
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RECOGNITION FOR SEATTLE CRICKETERS
1950 TO PRESENT: SELECTIONS FOR NATIONAL HONORS
Altogether, SIX past and present members of Seattle Cricket Club have
officially represented the USA, in matches against Canada and other
countries. They are as follows.
1. JACK SURENDRANATH
Perhaps the Seattle cricketer who has been most recognized and honoured outside Seattle...
Bellevue CC science professor and off-break bowler Jack Surendranath was selected 3 times to play for USA against Canada.
Jack's finest bowling performance came for the BCMCL against a Kent team consisting of 6 Test players.
He has also served on the governing body of the British Columbia Mainland Cricket League for several years.
Jack, who has served in almost every office of the Seattle Cricket Club in the past 30 years, is also an official umpire for the British Columbia Mainland Cricket League.
2. ASLAM KHAN, 3. SURINDERJIT SINGH, 4. JOHN SAVORY, 5. KEN LUND, and 6. KATHRYN HABBESTAD.
ASLAM KHAN and SURINDERJIT SINGH, senior cricketers who are still playing for Seattle Cricket Club (see 'Players'), were each selected once to play for USA against Canada in the Late 1970s. The same applies to JOHN SAVORY in 1966.
KEN LUND was selected to play for the USA against Ireland in 1973.
KATHRYN HABBESTAD was named official scorer for the USA vs Canada Test Match in Vancouver BC in 1978.
OTHER REGIONAL AND NATIONAL SELECTIONS
JACK SURENDRANATH, ASLAM KHAN, EMERSON RAWLINS, VIVIAN HARRIS, VIPUL SHAH, NAVEED DEEN and MARK DEMOS were selected (some more than once) for representative BCMCL and Regional Teams in the past 25 years.
EDAN and JOHN GANNIE were selected to play in all-Guyanese touring teams at national tournaments in Canada and the USA.
DEB K. DAS, in 1992, was named US and North American Editor when CRICKETER International started a North American Edition. He was recently named USA Coordinator for Cricinfo, the worldwide Web site for cricket.
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