SOMERSET'S GREATEST XI: Wicket Keepers
Since Somerset County Cricket Club’s inception in 1875, some of the greatest cricketers ever to have graced the field have represented the County.
However, the eternal question is: who would make it into Somerset’s greatest ever county championship team?
We are now giving you the chance to answer that question.
Every Monday for the next few weeks, you will have the opportunity to help select the Club’s greatest ever red-ball XI.
We have compiled a shortlist which will enable you to select our best ever openers, middle order, wicketkeeper, seamers and spinners.
Today we give you the chance to pick the wicket keeper.
Simply select one player from the list provided, and the one who receives the most votes will be selected and announced next week.
Born on January 1st 1901, Walter “Wally” Luckes made his Somerset debut in 1924 and by 1927 he had made the position behind the stumps his own.
However, serious illness nearly resulted in bringing his career to an early end. Between 1929 and 1932 he was limited to only a handful of appearances.
With his health returned, he reclaimed his place in 1933 and during that season he created a Somerset record by dismissing 71 batters. He went on to break that record himself in both 1937, 1938 and 1946.
Following the Second World War he resumed his career with Somerset and played until 1949 when he retired at the age of 48.
He played 365 First Class matches for Somerset, scoring 5710 runs at an average of 16.22 with a best of 121 not out.
During his Somerset career he secured 827 dismissals (587 catches and 240 stumpings).
Harold Stephenson joined Somerset from Durham in 1948 and took over the gloves from the much-loved Wally Luckes.
In his first full season he claimed an impressive 83 wickets, a Club record.
After a decade of outstanding service he became Somerset’s second professional captain when he succeeded Maurice Tremlett.
He remained with the Club until 1964 and he is the only Somerset ‘keeper to claim over 1000 wickets.
He holds the Club record for the most dismissals in a season (86), the most stumpings in a season (45), the most catches in a career (694) and the most stumpings in a career (312).
In 700 First Class matches for Somerset he also scored 12,473 runs at an average of 20.02 with a best of 147 not out.
The man from Weston-super-Mare made his debut for Somerset in 1991 and between then and 2005 he played in 211 First Class matches in which he scored 8473 runs at an average of 33.09, including 10 centuries, with a best of 144 against Kent in 1997.
Rob exceeded 1000 First Class runs on two occasions, his best season being 1999 when he totaled 1217 runs.
Behind the stumps in First Class cricket Rob claimed 682 dismissals (645 catches and 37 stumpings) a number only bettered by Harold Stephenson and Wally Luckes in the Somerset rankings.
Rob claimed nine victims in a First Class match against Yorkshire in 1996, Surrey in 2001 and Derbyshire in 2003 and was a vital part of Somerset’s C&G winning side of 2001.
Derek started his playing career with Buckinghamshire in the Minor Counties before joining the Surrey staff in 1964, where he was under the watchful eye of Arthur McIntyre, the man who kept for the club during their championship winning years in the 1950s.
Derek made his first team debut behind the stumps for Surrey in 1966 and over the course of the next three seasons he made a total of 10 appearances but while Arnold Long, who was well established as the first team ‘keeper, was at the club, he knew he had to move to further his career.
He joined Somerset in 1970 and during his time with the Club he was a key member of the “Glory Years” team that won five one-day trophies in as many seasons.
Derek played in 280 First Class matches for Somerset, scoring 6796 runs at an average of 22.44 which included four centuries. He topped 1000 First Class runs in a season twice with his best being 1121 runs in 1975.
In addition Derek took 588 catches and claimed 74 stumpings in First Class cricket.
Craig Kieswetter first came to prominence with Somerset when he took over the gloves during the course of a Second XI Championship match against Glamorgan in May 2006, after which he never looked back and ended that season with a batting average of 40 from seven innings.
Early the following year he got his opportunity in the first team and became a regular in the Somerset line up, producing many match winning performances in all formats of the game.
Although he was born in South Africa Craig has a Scottish mother and in February 2010 he qualified to play for England immediately after which he made his international debut. In April he was named as Man of the Match when England won the Twenty20 World Cup in the West Indies.
That summer Craig was a key member of the Somerset side which narrowly missed out on winning the LV= County Championship title, as well as being the losing finalists in both the T20 and 40 over competitions.
In 2011 Craig made a career best 164 against Lancashire in the Championship and was awarded his County cap by Somerset.
However, in July of 2014 he sustained a serious eye injury when he was struck in the face whilst batting against Northamptonshire in the County Championship. This eventually resulted in his early retirement from the game.
In 105 First Class matches for Somerset he claimed 306 catches and 11 stumpings. He also scored 5062 runs at an average of 37.77.
LAST WEEK’S VOTE
Last week we asked you select Somerset’s greatest all rounder.
You selected Ian Botham, with 80% of the votes.
Next week we will be asking you to pick our greatest spinner.
Don’t miss out on the chance to have your say on who are the best Somerset players of all time!Back to News