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Full name George Durant Kemp-Welch
Born August 4, 1907, Chelsea, London
Died June 18, 1944, Chelsea, London (aged 36 years 319 days)
Major teams Cambridge University, Warwickshire
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm fast-medium
Education Charterhouse; Cambridge University
Captain George Durant Kemp-Welch died in June as the outcome of enemy action which destroyed the Guards Chapel. He gave up important business connections when war broke out and joined the Grenadier Guards. As a soldier he carried the same compelling force that made him prominent as a games player at Charterhouse and Cambridge, while, with more time available, he might have become invaluable in the Warwickshire cricket eleven.
He progressed steadily in batting, after showing more prominence as a fast-medium-paced bowler at school, and, though in 1929 doing little at Fenner's, he found his form at Cheltenham against Gloucestershire as an opening batsman and gained his Blue when a Freshman. The big occasion provided the opportunity for Kemp-Welch to produce his best skill and admirable style: in his three matches against Oxford he played six innings, scoring 270 runs with an average of 45--an exceptional level of consistent batting under the trying conditions that always prevail at Lord's.
In 1930 Kemp-Welch helped E. T. Killick in an opening stand for 139, and he took two wickets for 10 runs in a collapse, Cambridge winning by 205 runs. When captain next year he batted admirably for 87 and 28 against Oxford, beginning the match in a partnership of 149 with A. Ratcliffe, who went on to create a record of 201 which the Nawab of Pataudi immediately excelled by making 238 not out. This great innings, which mainly accounted for Oxford winning by eight wickets, still heads the list of three-figure scores made in inter-University matches. Continuing the habit begun in 1927 of playing for Warwickshire in the summer vacation, Kemp-Welch finished the summer with a remarkable experience of travelling and good batting: in the course of two weeks he played for Warwickshire at Taunton, for the Gentlemen both at Folkestone and Scarborough, and then back to Folkestone for the Rest of England match against the M.C.C. South African team. Opening the batting, he scored in these games 56, 12, 51, 28 and 40. In that year he also played for the Gentlemen at Lord's, and altogether that season scored 1,561 runs, average 37.16.
In February 1932 Kemp-Welch went to Jamaica with a team captained by Lord Tennyson, and again was associated with a record by an opponent, G. Headley scoring 344 not out, the highest individual innings played by a West Indies batsman. Kemp-Welch made 105 in the same match and 186 in the return encounter with All Jamaica. Brilliant fielding helped to make him a valuable member of any side.
After playing well for three years in the Charterhouse team, Kemp-Welch gained his Association football Blue at Cambridge as centre-forward and became captain of the eleven. In 1934 he married Mrs. Richard Munro, daughter of Mr. Stanley Baldwin, subsequently Lord Baldwin of Bewdley.
Wisden Cricketers' Almanack
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