Your Committee begs to present its Annual Report and Balance Sheet for 1933.
Nottinghamshire finished the season eighth in the Championship. Of 28 County Matches played, 7 were won, 8 were lost and 18 drawn. The seasons results must therefore be regarded as disappointing. Not till the end of May was a match won, v. Cambridge University, followed by a wonderful victory at Lords v. Middlesex. Two other performances are outstanding, viz., the defeat of Sussex by 9 wickets, the other the drawn game v. Yorkshire, both at Trent Bridge, where no match was lost.
Despite the season’s poor result, there were many individual feats worthy of record. Keeton was the outstanding batsmen of the year. He had an average of 46, and of his total 2,112 runs – over 1,000 were scored in August – including six centuries, 4 in successive matches. Walker, in his Benefit year, scored 1,731 runs, with 3 centuries. Mr. Carr scored 1,574 runs, with 3 centuries and made a gallant 97 not out v. Yorkshire as Bradford. Harris had a good season, making 2 centuries – his 234 being the highest score in matches for the County. Voce exceeded 1,000 runs for the first time, and though he did not make a century, was promoted in the batting order and fully justified his promotion. Arthur Staples also scored 1,000 runs with two centuries. Gunn G. V. is now taking his place as an all round cricketer, and earns marks in all departments. Hardstaff started badly, but late in the season justified the hopes that the Committee has always had of his powers. Lilley, in his duel capacity, did extremely well. Larwood, unable to bowl, showed how fine a bat he is, and fully proved he is worth his place for batting and fielding alone.
The bowling was largely in the hands of three players, the brothers Staples and Voce. Staples (S. J.) just missed taking 100 wickets for the second year in succession, his 6 for 29 in the 2nd innings at Lord’s paving the way for the fine victory over Middlesex. The best bowling performance of the season was that of Staples (A.) v. Derbyshire at Trent Bridge, 11 wickets for 29 runs.
Your Committee always welcomes amateur talent, and H. R. Cox is to be congratulated on taking 5 wickets for 36 v. Sussex at Trent Bridge, and though he did not do himself justice with the bat, his record in club cricket is outstanding.
Butler made a promising start in County cricket, and in the match v. Yorkshire at Trent Bridge, he had the fine figures of 5 wickets for 36 runs. The fielding of the team was good, Mr. Carr setting a fine example, while Keeton and Gunn were very sound, and saved many runs in the outfield. Mr. Carr, who has missed only one match in the last two years, led the side with his usual skill and keenness. He had a difficult task in a batsman’s year to force victory with three regular bowlers – without Larwood – while Voce, after 3 seasons on end could not do himself justice with the ball. In spite of these great handicaps, Mr. Carr used his bowlers with judgment, and got the best out of his team.
The 2nd Eleven played many local matches, and though short of bowlers, contains many of the young batsmen of great promise.
Three members of the Groundstaff have left, F. W. Shipston, A. W. Oates and G. W. Robinson, to join the City Police Force and your Committee wishes them the best of luck.
Looking back on the season, one realizes the heavy price the club has had to pay for the success of its two famous players in Australia, both in the season’s results and in reduced income.
It will be recalled that in the last Test Match at Sydney in February, Larwood, while bowling, injured his left foot so badly that he had to leave the field. At his own request he has returned to England before the rest of the side, and was examined at the request of the M. C. C. by Mr. R. G. Hogarth. It was found possible for him to play at the beginning of the season, though it was soon apparent that his injured foot would not stand the strain of bowling, but for the first half of the season his batting and fielding made him well worth his place in the side. In June, Larwood was examined in London by Lord Moynihan, Mr. W. Rowley Bristow and Mr. R. G. Hogarth, and a report was subsequently published in the Press. The condition of the foot necessitated prolonged rest, which it was hoped would effect a cure, but that, this failing, the question of an operation would arise. At the end of the season, your Committee, advised by Mr. Hogarth and the other Medical Members of the Committee, came to the conclusion that an operation was advisable. Larwood was therefore operated on by Mr. W. Rowley Bristow in London on the 16th of October, and, as is well known, the operation proved successful, and it is hoped that Larwood will be fit to bowl as well as ever in 1934.
Presentation to Larwood and Voce. At the close of play v. Surrey on Whit Monday, a presentation was made to Larwood and Voce to mark the great public appreciation of the part they played in winning the Ashes for England. The Nottingham Guardian and Evening Post, and The Nottingham Journal and Evening News generously opened their columns for a Shilling Testimonial Fund. The sum of £776/6/0 was raised, and was divided equally, at Larwoods request, between the two players. In the presence of a large crowd, the cheques were presented by Mr. D. R. Jardine, the Surrey Captain, and England Captain in Australia, who paid a very handsome tribute to our two great bowlers. The Lord Mayor of Nottingham (Councilor H. Seely Whitby) Vice-President of the Club, who first publicly suggested the form of a testimonial, took part in the ceremony. Larwood and Voce were also presented by the Club with a Silver Salver, on which were autographed signatures of the Presidents and Members of the Committee. Mrs. Larwood and Mrs. Voce also received silver trinket boxes as a souvenir of the occasion, these being the personal gifts of the President (Mr. A. W. Shelton) who presided over the ceremony.
Dixon Memorial. On 2nd May the new Entrance Gates erected to the memory of the late Mr. J. A. Dixon were unveiled by the Rt. Hon. Sir F. Stanley Jackson, P. C. T Rev. F. W. Paul, a very old friend of Mr. Dixon, dedicated the Memorial. Many of Mr. Dixon’s old friends, colleagues in the great game, were present to bear witness to his outstanding gifts of friendship and unsought popularity. These beautiful gates, with their epic inscriptions, will stand for all time to remind us of a man, a cricketer, and a friend who loved the game and played it throughout life.
Test Matches. Your Committee is extremely glad to report that the first Test Match v. Australia in 1934, and the first Test Match v. South Africa in 1935 have been allotted to Trent Bridge in June of each year. Certain minor improvements in your ground at Trent Bridge, as suggested by the Committee appointed by the Board of Control for Test Matches, have been effected, and much work has been done, and is in progress, for the comfort of the players, members and spectators. The ground behind the pavilion will be utilized to provide Refreshment accommodation in the open.
For the second year in succession, and as a special tribute to the side, and to the President of the year, Sir Julien Cahn presented all members a copy of the Nottinghamshire County Cricket Club Year Book, compiled by Sir Home Gordon.
Your Committee record with deep regret the passing in the early days of December of three gentlemen who have rendered services of great value to the Club. Mr. John Cutts, who died on the 5th of December at the age of 75, was from 1903 to 1923, one of the most useful and active members of the Committee. Dr. G. A. Coulby, who died on the 4th December at the age of 67, was for nine years, and at the time of his death, a valued member of the Committee. Mr. P. W. Oscroft died in a London Nursing Home on 8th December, aged 61. He was a well-known athlete and sportsman, a fine Cricketer and Rugby Football player, and played in the Nottinghamshire County Eleven as an amateur on several occasions from 1894 to 1900.
The Committee regret to report that for the fourth successive year there has been a substantial loss on the season’s working, the amount for 1933 being £766/9/10.
The receipts include £178/3/1 from the West Indies Test Match, and the Trial Match, and £300 as a share of the profits from the Australian Tour 1932-33, as compared with £500 from the 1928-1929 Tour.
The total receipts from Subscriptions, Donations and Gate Money were £10,283, as compared with £10,611 in 1932, a falling off of £328. Subscribing Members in 1933 were 3,519, as against 3,619 in 1932, and 4,034 in 1931.
There was a slight increase in match expenses for the year, the amount being £4,698 as compared with £4,646 in 1932.
Two main factors are responsible for much of the Club’s total loss for the year:- (1) The payment of approximately £280/5/9 in respect of paving and gravelling to render dustless the pathways around the ground and under the concrete stands. This special and costly work was foreshadowed in the report for 1932. (2) The allocation of £261/19/11 to make up the net proceeds of Willis Walker’s Benefit Match (in accordance with precedent) to £300.
The total indebtedness of the Club on December 31st, 1933, was £4,262/17/5 as compared with £3,499/2/2 on 31st December 1932.
The accounts show that in respect of his loss on match pay Larwood received the sum of £222 which was covered by an insurance policy effected by the M.C.C. The expenses of the operation borne by the Club, including nursing home charges, amounted to 163/18/7. The Club is deeply indebted to the M.C.C for their great kindness and consideration in this matter by repaying your Committee the whole of this sum.
Willis Walker’s Benefit. The match chosen by Willis Walker v. Lancashire on 15th, 17th, 18th July was ruined by rain, although Walker scored an excellent century. Your Committee granted him in its place the match v. Middlesex on the 12th, 14th, 15th August. The financial result is most disappointing, both to your Committee and to the Beneficiare. The total receipts from all sources amount to £889/2/2. This is several hundreds of pounds less than from any benefit match of recent years, and cannot be regarded as adequate reward for Walker’s long and distinguished services to his native County. The total yield includes £261/19/11 as the contribution from the club to make up the net proceeds of the match v. Middlesex to £300. The thanks of the Club are due to Sir Julien Cahn for his kindness in having collections on his ground in the match v. West Indies, which produced £40. Thanks are also due to the Benefit Sub-Committee, who organized and carried out the collections on Trent Bridge Ground yielding £161/16/5, and also to the Committee of the Worksop Cricket Club for authorizing the collections at Worksop during the match v. Northants, which produced £14/14/9.
The thanks of your Committee are due to Sir Julien Cahn for providing hospitality at the opening ceremony of the Dixon Gate Memorial, in addition to his generous contribution to the fund.
During the year numerous additions have been made to the pavilion, collections of pictures, photographs, and many further books have also been added to the Cricket library. The thanks of the Committee are due to the generous donors.
Mr. A. W. Shelton, President, has made the handsome donation of £100 to the funds of the Club.
By Order of the Committee, G. O. GAULD, Hon. Secretary.