John Bruce Plimsoll
October 27, 1917, Kalk Bay, Cape Province
November 11, 1999, Cape Town, Cape Province, (aged 82y 15d)
Right hand Bat
Left arm Medium fast
John Bruce Plimsoll, who died in Cape Town on November 11 aged 82, was a tail-end batsman and left-arm medium-fast bowler who played for Western Province and Natal between 1939-40 and 1949-50. He toured England with the 1947 Springboks, taking 68 wickets at an average of 23.32, and played in his sole Test at Old Trafford in which he toiled hard to take three wickets in the first innings for 143. In a first-class career badly interrupted by the war, Plimsoll played 39 matches and took 155 wickets at 23.10. His best bowling was 7 for 35 for Western Province against Griqualand West at Kimberley in 1946-47, when his match figures of 10 for 88 contributed much to a Currie Cup victory. He scored 386 runs at an average of 11.35, with a best of 51 for Western against Eastern Province at Cape Town in 1947-48.
He gained greater fame as an administrator. He was the manager of the successful 1965 team that toured England and served the Western Province Cricket Union as vice-president under Boon Wallace. He also served Mowbray Golf Club as club captain. He is survived by his wife and four children. His elder son, John, represented South African Universities while studying at Stellenbosch University.
Michael Owen-Smith October 2004
Batting & Fielding