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ARCHIVE PHOTO SPECIAL: PART THREE

Over the course of the winter months, we have been delving into the archives in order to unearth some interesting photographs from throughout our history.

Some of these images won’t have been seen for decades, so we hope you enjoy this series of articles which will take you down a visual memory lane.

The image at the top of this article is of a young Ian Botham, and was taken at Taunton in April 1974.

The 18-year-old had made his debut the previous season, and hopes were high for the young allrounder.

He featured in 18 First Class matches for the County during the 1974 season, scoring 441 runs with a best of 59. He also claimed 30 wickets at an average of 24.63 with a best of five for 59.

He also played in 18 List A matches for Somerset that summer, scoring 222 runs with a best of 45 not out and taking 12 wickets with a best of two for 16.

In addition, the future England Captain also represented the Second XI on two occasions in Minor Counties Championship matches that year. He took three for 51 and four for 60 in Somerset’s seven-wicket win over Cheshire at Macclesfield before his final Minor County fixture against Shropshire in Ludlow.

In May of that year he starred as Somerset Second XI claimed a 151-run victory over Glamorgan in a two-day match at Wells, which also featured the likes of Merv Kitchen, Peter Roebuck, Vic Marks, Phil Slocombe, Brian Rose and Dennis Breakwell in the Somerset lineup.

The rest, as they say, is history!


This picture of Arthur Wellard was taken during the summer of 1949.

Although he didn’t make his debut until he was 25, Arthur Wellard enjoyed a long career with the County, playing between 1927 and 1950.

After a two year qualifying period, during which time he worked as a cricket professional for Weston-super-Mare CC, Arthur took 131 wickets in his first season in 1929. He also claimed 10 wickets in a match for the first time during his fourth County Championship appearance against his native Kent, with figures of six for 108 and four for 28.

From then on he remained a regular member of the Somerset side.

Between 1927 and 1950 Arthur Wellard played in 391 matches for Somerset in which he took 1517 wickets at an average of 24.32 and enjoyed his career best eight for 52 against Worcestershire at Bath in 1947, when he was 45 years old!

He is the second highest wicket-taker for Somerset, behind Jack White. He also claimed five or more wickets in an innings on 105 occasions, again second behind White, and second also in the 10-wicket hauls list with 24 behind White’s 57.

In 1936 Arthur Wellard was named as a Wisden Cricketer of the Year. In 1938 he took 169 wickets for Somerset, the most by any player in a season, and in 1946, at the age of 44, he became the oldest player to claim 100 wickets in a season for the County.

Arthur achieved the double (1000 runs and 100 wickets) twice, in both 1933 and 1935.

He played in two Test Matches, once against New Zealand in 1937 and then against Australia the next summer.


This image shows one of the perils of cricket, and indeed the British summer.

Taken on July 14th, 2001, it shows the touring Australian team killing time during a rain delay on day two of their tourist match against Somerset at Taunton.

Amongst the players watching the Australia v British and Irish Lions rugby union match in the Colin Atkinson Pavilion is Adam Gilchrist.

Despite the weather, the game was played to a conclusion with the Australians coming out on top in the four-day match by 176 runs.

There were two debutants for Somerset in the match, in the form of Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar and his compatriot Aamer Sohail.

After winning the toss and electing to bat, the tourists declared on 348 for three. Despite Jason Kerr and Jamie Grove reducing Australia to 62 for two, Ricky Ponting (128) and Justin Langer (104 not out) put their side on top.

Aamer Sohail made 50 and useful contributions from Rob Turner (42), Matt Wood (39) and Keith Parsons (38) saw Somerset make 267 all out in their first innings.

Batting for a second time, Australia declared on 335 for four with Damien Martyn top scoring with 176 not out. Half centuries from Wood and Mike Burns gave Somerset hope but the hosts were eventually dismissed for 240.


The above photograph was taken in July 1981 at Lord’s during the final of the Benson & Hedges Cup.

Somerset took on Surrey in the 55-over match and lifted the trophy thanks to a comprehensive victory.

After winning the toss Brian Rose elected to field.

Joel Garner terrorised the opposition, taking five for 14 from 11 overs as Surrey reached 194 for eight from their allotted overs. Roger Knight was the only batsman who offered any resistance, making 92.

Requiring 195 for victory, Somerset found themselves on five for two but then Viv Richards played one of his finest innings for the County.

The West Indian maestro was at his majestic best on his way to making 132 not out as his side reached their target off 44.3 overs to win by seven wickets.


This image was taken at the Cooper Associates County Ground on June 28th 2000 ahead of England Women’s ODI against South Africa.

It was the second time that a Women’s ODI had been played at Taunton and England won by eight wickets.

After winning the toss, England skipper Clare Connor elected to field.

Half centuries from Cindy Eksteen (62) and Aluis Kuylaars (57 not out) helped the tourists to 222 for seven from their 50 overs.

Charlotte Edwards made 96 not out and Barbara Daniels scored 95 as England reached the required total for the loss of just two wickets from 46.2 overs.

England would win the five-match series 3-2.

We hope that you have enjoyed this look through the archives, and we look forward to you joining us again soon for part four.

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09/07/2022 19:00 - The Cooper Associates County Ground