Patrick Ian Pocock
September 24, 1946, Bangor, Caernarvonshire, Wales
Right hand Bat
Right arm Offbreak
Merton C of E Secondary: Wimbledon Technical College
A low threshold of boredom, or perhaps because he played cricket as a game to be enjoyed rather than merely a job, might have been all that stood between Pat Pocock and a lengthy and successful Test career. As an offspinner, he had a model side-on action, nice drift from leg to off, good control of flight and sufficient powers of spin. But a desire to outwit his man, combined with The Oval's frustrating lack of bounce and pace in the 1970s, denied "Percy" a crucial weapon in the finger-spinner's armoury - willingness to bore a batsman out. For England, Pocock's overs cost half-a-run more each than John Emburey's; which probably accounted for Embers playing more than twice as many Tests. His 25 Test appearances were spread over 17 years, the last nine in consecutive matches after he was given a surprise recall in 1984 to end an eight-year hiatus from Test cricket. With 67 wickets at over 40 and a strike rate almost in three figures, the popular Pocock was typical of the increasing toothlessness of English finger-spinners at the very highest level, although he was highly successful with Surrey. He took 1607 first-class wickets and produced an amazing performance against Sussex in 1972, taking four wickets in four balls,five in six, six in nine and seven in eleven. Unsurprisingly, the last two are records.
Batting & Fielding