Full name Arthur Edward Wilson
Born May 18, 1910, Paddington, London
Died July 29, 2002, Redmarley DAbitot, Gloucestershire (aged 92 years 72 days)
Major teams Gloucestershire, Middlesex
Batting style Left-hand bat
Bowling style Slow left-arm orthodox
Fielding position Wicketkeeper
|First-class span||1932 - 1955|
Wilson, Arthur Edward, died in Redmarley D'Abitot on July 29, 2002, aged 92. "Andy" Wilson was one of those wicket-keepers, diminutive and undemonstrative, who are so efficient that their craftsmanship passes virtually unnoticed, though by no means unappreciated by fellow players and the county faithful. He played 318 times for Gloucestershire between 1936 and 1955, following seven games for Middlesex in 1932 and 1933. He had been a slow left-arm bowler when he joined the Lord's groudstaff, where he was a contemporary of Denis Compton and a future Gloucestershire captain in George Emmett, but when called on to keep for the Young Professionals against the Young Amateurs he revealed a natural talent for the job. With Fred Price established as Middlesex's keeper, there were few calls for Wilson's safe hands. When he made his county debut at Worcester, it was as a gutsy lower-order left-hander, helping add 94 for the ninth wicket, and later that season he made 53 at Cardiff in an unbroken ninth-wicket stand of 137 with J. W. Hearne. In 1935 he helped Middlesex Seconds win the Minor Counties Championship and then decided to try his hand in the West Country. Almost 26, Wilson still had to qualify by residence before he could play Championship cricket for Gloucestershire. That meant two years of waiting, so it was 1938 before he was keeping to Tom Goddard and Reg Sinfield as they took 100 wickets apiece. He also scored 1,138 runs, including 130 against Middlesex at Lord's, a mischievously satisfying maiden hundred during which he and Billy Neale added 192 for the eighth wicket. Against Lancashire at Bristol two months later he was very much the junior partner as Wally Hammond steamed past 2,000 runs for the season with 271 - it was still only mid-July - and they established Gloucestershire's eighth-wicket record of 239. "Run when I tell you," was Hammond's instruction to the incoming Wilson. "And I didn't face a ball for eight overs," Wilson would recall. He made 83. He was not the prettiest of batsmen but he drove and pulled powerfully. Pressed into opening in 1946, after wartime service in the RAF, he again reached his thousand; he did so every year to 1950 and again in 1953 at the age of 43. That last season he set a world record with ten catches in a match - six in Hampshire's first innings at Portsmouth and four in their second. In due course he would give the gloves he wore at Portsmouth to another Gloucestershire keeper, Jack Russell, whom he encouraged when Russell was still a schoolboy. Back in 1947, when Gloucestershire fought Middlesex nip and tuck for the Championship, Wilson's 62 dismissals had included 30 stumpings as Goddard's fiercely spun off-breaks and Sam Cook's subtle slow left-armers bemused visiting batsmen on the new sand-and-clay strips at Bristol. Goddard took 206 wickets and Cook 120 in the title race. In a career of 328 matches, Wilson finished with 425 catches, 176 stumpings and 10,744 runs at 25.28. His highest score of 188 came when opening against Sussex at Chichester in 1949. From 1950 he doubled as Gloucestershire's coach. On retiring he moved into journalism, covering cricket, soccer and rugby for a number of papers, and also worked for the National Farmers' Union.
Wisden Cricketers' Almanack
Is the Universe Boss ready to hang up his boots? Not quite - poor year or not
Also, what is the record for the number of sixes hit in a T20 match?