Full name William MacFarlane Mitchell
Born August 15, 1929, Lewisham, London
Died November 8, 2005, Westminster Abbey, London (aged 76 years 85 days)
Major teams Oxford University
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Legbreak googly
Education Dulwich College; Merton College, Oxford
|First-class span||1951 - 1953|
Bill Mitchell was a legspinner in the Oxford XI for three seasons, winning Blues in 1951 and 1952, but he lost his place in the side before the Varsity match in his final year.
He arrived from Dulwich where he had spent four years in the XI, and during which time he had captained Southern Schools at Lord's, and made an immediate impression, taking 5 for 107 (which were to remain a career-best) and scoring 36 against Middlesex. He held on to his place for the Varsity match which Oxford won by 21 runs.
In 1952 he struggled more, but took four wickets against Surrey and Sussex shortly before the Varsity match which secured his place. Against Cambridge he took 0 for 112 but scored 48 and 25 in a drawn match.
In 1953 he struggled more and the emergence of younger spinners and examination pressure meant that he missed out on a third Blue.
He collapsed and died at Westminster Abbey while acting as an usher at Sir Edward Heath's memorial service. Bill was always capable of a dramatic gesture," said an old friend.
He understands the Indian mentality better and doesn't have to deal with star players on the wane