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Full name John Victor Wilson
Born January 17, 1921, Scampston, Malton, Yorkshire
Died June 5, 2008, Yedingham (aged 87 years 140 days)
Major teams Yorkshire
Batting style Left-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium
Education Norton Boys School; Malton Grammar School
A right-hand batsman and outstanding close fielder, Vic Wilson took charge of Yorkshire side in 1960 from Ronnie Burnet, who had led the county to the Championship the previous year, ending Surrey's seven-year domination. Yorkshire's first professional captain since 1882, under him they retained the title in 1960 and regained it in 1962, after which he stood down in favour of Brian Close.
"Wilson caused a sensation in the first Championship match of the season against Sussex by declaring with all ten first-innings wickets intact and finally his side lost the game after he had instructed his players to go for runs," Wisden noted, adding that the reason for the ultimate success was simple. "Every player pointed first and foremost to the skipper. He never lost faith in himself or his team."
After playing league cricket in the war, he started playing for Yorkshire's 2nd XI in 1946 and made his first-team debut the same year. In 1948 he made his maiden hundred, against Surrey, and was awarded his county cap. Dropped in 1949, he did not gain a regular place until 1951, and that coincided with him being identified as a close fielder.
Such was England's strength in the 1950s that Wilson was never called on by England, although he did tour Australia in 1954-55 under his county team-mate, Len Hutton. But so strong was his reputation as a fielder that he was 12th man in all five Tests.
Wisden Cricketer of the Year 1961
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