Rare cricketing century for Cyril Perkins

Former Northamptonshire slow left-armer Cyril Perkins has reached a rare cricketing century today (June 4) by becoming only the 12th former first-class player and the fourth county cricketer to celebrate his 100th birthday.

Perkins, now domiciled in Suffolk where he is president of the Minor Counties side, is the oldest surviving former first-class cricketer in the world.

He played 56 matches for Northamptonshire as a professional between 1934 and 1936 and a further one for the Minor Counties against Kent in 1951 without ever finishing on the winning side, a record for the number of first-class appearances without a win.

Perkins was unfortunate to play for Northamptonshire at a particular low point in their history as they went 99 matches without a win between 1935 and 1939.

He took 93 wickets including five five-wicket hauls, the best of them six for 54 against Worcestershire at Northampton in July 1935 when Northamptonshire managed to turn a first innings lead of 78 into a 30-run defeat.

But Perkins enjoyed more success in Minor Counties cricket when he moved to Suffolk to coach at Ipswich School, claiming a county record 779 wickets.

At the age of 55 he made his solitary List A appearance in a Gillette Cup defeat by a powerful Kent side at Ipswich School where he bowled 12 miserly overs for just 31.

Perkins played his last Minor Counties match in 1967 at the age of 56 and was later given the accolade of inclusion in the Best Minor Counties XI of the 20th Century.

Perkins follows JM Hutchinson of Derbyshire, EA English of Hampshire and GO Deane of Hampshire in the list of county cricketers to have celebrated their 100th birthday.

Norman Gordon of South Africa is due to celebrate his centenary on August 6, in which case he will become the first former Test cricketer to reach his 100th birthday.

The full list of former first-class cricketers to have reached 100 years is:

1.       JM Hutchinson. Derbyshire 1920-31. B. Nov 29 1896. D. November 7 2000. 103 years 344 days

2.       S W Ward. Wellington 1929-30 to 1937-38. B.August 5 1907. D. December 31 2010. 103 years 148 days.

3.       R de Smidt. Western Province 1912-13. B. November 23 1883. D. August 3 1986. 102 years 253 days.

4.       EA English. Hampshire 1898-1901. B. January 1 1864. D. September 5 1966. 102 years 247 days.

5.       J Wheatley. Canterbury  1882-83 to 1903-04. B. January 8 1860. D. April 19 1962. 102 years 101 days.

6.       EJ Martin. Western Australia 1932-33. B. September 30 1902. D. June 9 2004. 101 years 253 days.

7.       DB Deodhar. Hindus 1911-12 to 1936-37, Maharashtra 1934-35 to 1946-47. B. January 14 1892. D August 24 1993. 101 years 222 days.

8.       GH Harman. Dublin University 1895. B June 6 1874. D December 14 1975. 101 years 191 days.

9.       AG Finlayson. Eastern Province 1921-22. B September 1 1900. D October 28 2001. 101 years 57 days.

10.   CH Braithwaite. English Residents 1881-1890, Players of the USA 1885-1893. B September 10 1845. D. April 15 1946. 100 years 217 days.

11.   GO Deane. Hampshire 1848. B December 11 1828. D February 26 1929. 100 years 77 days.

12. GC Perkins. Northamptonshire 1934-37, Minor Counties 1951. B June 4 1911.

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2 Responses to Rare cricketing century for Cyril Perkins

  1. steve sheen says:

    Thought you should have given credit to Robert Brooke for supplying list of centurions!

  2. Ger Siggins says:

    Perkins is the 13th, as Edward Liddle recently uncovered details of the death of a second Dublin University first-class “centurion”.

    HARRY HOLLINGSWORTH FORSYTH died in Dublin on 19 July 2004 but his death escaped the notice of the cricket media at the time. He was aged 100 years and 24 days.

    Educated at Wesley College, before entering Dublin University to read law, Harry was a left hand batsman, and a capable wicket keeper.

    Though never fully establishing himself in the University Ist XI, he was in the side which travelled to the county ground at Wantage Road, Northampton in 1926 to take on the county side in what proved to be the final such match undertaken by the University.