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Full name Anthony Lorraine Wilmot
Born June 1, 1943, Somerset East, Cape Province
Died February 29, 2004, Grahamstown, Eastern Cape (aged 60 years 273 days)
Major teams Border, Eastern Province
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium
Relation Brother - NN Wilmot
|List A span||1969-1989|
Lorrie Wilmot, one of South Africa's renowned big hitters of the isolation era, apparently took his own life in a shooting incident on his farm outside Grahamstown on February 29 at the age of 60. Anthony Lorraine Wilmot was estranged from his wife and had been convicted on a rape charge of a 13-year-old the previous year. He appealed against the sentence and, although it was reduced, he was still due to spend a considerable time behind bars. He was also rumoured to be suffering from an incurable disease. Wilmot had a lengthy career for Eastern Province and Border that lasted for nearly 30 years. It included a spell captaining Eastern Province. He will be remembered most of all on the cricket field for his big hitting. When New Zealand toured in 1961-62 he was estimated to have hit a six off Jack Sparling, an off-spinner, that had a carry of 116 yards.
Lorrie Wilmot committed the most dastardly act I have witnessed on the cricket field. The venue was Queens Sports Club, Bulawayo, the match the 1972-73 Currie Cup fixture between Rhodesia and Eastern Province. Wilmot, Province's acting captain, had set Rhodesia more than 300 to win. Rhodesia batted superbly and it was obvious it would be the tightest of finishes.
In those days 20 overs had to be bowled in the final hour, and the last of those 20 arrived with Rhodesia needing six to win and with three wickets in hand and Mike Procter (to face) and Paddy Clift at the crease. At this point Wilmot led his team off the field, claiming that the 20 overs had been completed, and refused to continue. In accordance with the laws of the game, the umpires awarded the match to Rhodesia, only for this decision to be astoundingly overturned by the South African authorities and the match declared a draw. This arbitrary decision cost Rhodesia what would have been their only Currie Cup title.
Wilmot wasted much time setting his field for the last over before the final hour, in the belief that this over would be counted from the time his team was ready, rather than the fact that the umpires were in position, as stipulated by the laws. His walk-off was totally without warning and against both the spirit and the laws of the game.
A look at some of cricket's most memorable strokes - and their makers