Worcs mourn death of Martin Horton

Worcestershire are mourning former England all-rounder Martin Horton, who has died after a long illness aged 76.

Horton was involved with Worcestershire in two of the most successful periods of their history, first as an integral part of the squad that won the County Championship for the first time in 1964 and again the following year, then as a committee member when they won back-to-back titles again in 1988 and 1989.

In between he had 17 years as New Zealand’s national coach having emigrated to play four seasons with Northern Districts when he retired from county cricket in 1966.

Worcester-born Horton later served as Worcestershire’s chairman of cricket and he also coached at the city’s Royal Grammar School.

His two Tests came against India at the start of the 1959 season when he played at Trent Bridge and Lord’s. He made 58 on his debut in an innings win and took for 24 at Lord’s and was unlucky not to be picked again.

Worcestershire made better use of Horton’s talent and he scored almost 20,000 runs, including 23 centuries, and took 825 wickets in a first-class career that spanned 410 matches.

He did the double in 1961, took a hat-trick with his off-breaks against Somerset at Bath in 1956 and a career-best nine for 56 against the South African tourists in 1955.

Horton’s highest score, 233, was made in a then Worcestershire third wicket record stand of 314 against Somerset in 1962 which stood until 1997 when Graeme Hick and Tom Moody piled up 438 against Hampshire at Southampton.

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