The life and career of Vince Lindo is testament to the fact that even if you don't quite make it in the First-Class game, you can be highly successul, popular and influential in the recreational game.
Born on 6 June 1936 in Bigwoods, St Elizabeth in Jamaica, Cleveland Vincent Lindo, known by everyone as Vince, was a right-hand bat and right-arm fast bowler. He was the last of ten children, only five of which survived to adulthood.
On leaving school, Lindo began to make his name as a cricketer and was spotted by George Headley, who recommended him to the War Department of the British Army, where he was offered work as a clerk and drafted into the Garrison CC team, based in Kingston. Encouraged by some of his colleagues he came over to England at the age of 23 with a group of friends. Vince found work in the shunting sheds at St Pancras station. He then saw a newspaper advert placed by Notts, offering trials to fast bowlers. He applied and on the basis of taking 7-50 and 6-115 for Notts Club and Ground versus the Pakistan Eaglets in late August 1959 he was offered a contract by Notts for the 1960 season.
Although he played ten games for Notts Second XI (26 wickets @30.92) and won an award as the best bowler in the Bassetlaw League he played only one First-Class game for Notts the opening game of the 1960 season at Fenner’s versus Cambridge University. Notts suffered the humiliation of losing to the students by 161 runs; Lindo scored 18 and 24 and took no wickets for 74. Lindo had never received any coaching, and Notts Coach Frank Shipston tried to change his bowling action, reducing his effectiveness.
He moved on and became pro at Gainsborough Britannia CC, working for Rose Brothers in the town packaging materials. Somerset spotted Lindo and offered him a trial; he was quickly given his first-team debut for them at Taunton against the Pakistan Eaglets (again) in June 1963. He had a superb game, taking 8-88 in the only innings he bowled in and scoring 23 not out in a rain hit game. Lindo was offered by Somerset a salary below what he was receiving in Lincolnshire but with him also having to fund his travel costs, which he understandably declined. His brief First-Class career was over.
He did, though, become a very important figure in recreational cricket in the Midlands. Vince Lindo enjoyed considerable success in a thirteen season career as a pro in the North Staffordshire League; after playing into his Sixties he started umpiring. In 1965 and 1966 he played 17 Minor Counties Championship games for Staffordshire, taking 49 wickets @19.95. He also played in the 1960s for the International Cavaliers. He moved permanently to Staffordshire being employed firstly in engineering and latterly working in Occupational Therapy for the NHS.
When his death, on 6 January 2023, was announced, the fulsome praise from the cricketing community in Staffordshire and surrounding counties underlined both his popularity - his cheerful nature was much commented upon - and his value as an official in the club game. Although his time at Trent Bridge was limited, Vince Lindo was a regular, and popular, attendee of the Notts Former Player’s lunches for many years.
Nottinghamshire First-Class Number: 423