Chairman Rick Marston’s Portsmouth Cricket Club ‘dream team’ revealed
Portsmouth Cricket Club’s Rich Marston has selected his ‘chairman’s dream team’ - the cream of the talent that has graced St Helens for more than 30 years.
Portsmouth were established in 1989, having taken over from the South Hants Touring Club that were a regular name on the Southern League fixture list for many years.
Some of the players in Marston’s ‘dream team’ turned out for SHTC in the 1980s.
There are two Test internationals in the Portsmouth XI, as well as five others who played first class cricket - some for many seasons and over hundreds of matches.
‘This team would provide formidable opposition for the current Xl,’ Marston added, ‘although the dream team would need a lot of Tiger Balm to lubricate various joints.’
The Portsmouth-born all-rounder scored 2,082 runs and took 134 first-class wickets for Hampshire in 60 games between 1987 and 1993.
He also played in 94 one-day games and was a triple Lord’s final winner in the 1988 and 192 Benson & Hedges Cups and the 1991 Nat West Trophy.
He also compiled over 4,000 Southern League runs for Portsmouth and the club’s predecessor, the South Hants Touring Club, up to the end of the 1999 season.
Ayling was the Southern League’s top run-getter in 1987 with 855 and six years later scored three centuries in seven SL matches, including an unbeaten 182 against Longparish with 15 fours and 11 sixes.
At county level, Ayling starred in the game against Middlesex in August 1992 at Bournemouth, scoring 57 at No 7 before taking 5-12 in the visitors’ first innings.
His best Portsmouth bowling figures were 5-16 against Calmore in the same month as the Middlesex game, and later 5-20 against Burridge in 1997.
The son of prolific Somerset batsman Jimmy, South African-born Cook was Portsmouth’s overseas player in 2001 - at a time when his father was Hampshire’s coach.
Cook junior went on to play 11 test matches for South Africa, scoring three centuries.
For Portsmouth, the 18-year-old Cook struck 747 runs in 15 SL games at 67.91 with a top score of 163 against Old Basing.
Cook junior finished his first class career with 15,396 runs at 39.57, including 390 for Lions against Warriors in South African in October 2009 - a score that remains the 12th highest in the history of first class cricket.
The South African batsman was Portsmouth’s overseas player in 2004, hitting 419 runs in 10 games at 41.90..
He arrived at St Helens with eight first class centuries to his name for Eastern Province, with a highest of 196 (in a 441-run stand for the second wicket with former Somerset and Derbyshire batsman James Bryant). He was to end his career with over 5,000 first-class runs, including nine hundreds.
Naved Ashraf Qreshi
The batsman had played two Tests for Pakistan, in December 1998 and in March 2000, and over 140 first class games when he joined Portsmouth for the 2008 season.
With the club having been relegated two divisions for off-field matters, Qreshi compiled 586 runs in 15 innings at 65.11. He recorded eighth half centuries with a top score of 94 not out against US Portsmouth.
He also bagged 19 wickets, including 5-33 against Gosport Borough (he had earlier hit 55 in a 113-run win).
The Portsmouth-born all-rounder appeared in 23 first-class games for Hampshire between 2000 and 2004, scoring 975 runs at 28.67 with a top score of 152.
Prittipaul played 65 Southern League games for Portsmouth between 1997 and 2006, scoring 1,786 runs at 31.33. His top score was 164 against the Hampshire Academy in 2005. He also took 70 wickets at 18.2.
He was mainly used by Hampshire in one-day cricket, where he made 62 List A appearances after a debut in the CGU League in September 1999. He averaged just 13.11 with the bat and took 23 wickets at 38.69.
He also made 13 T20 appearances for the county.
Nicknamed ‘The Haymaker’, the Australian starred as Portsmouth’s overseas player for four seasons, during which he played for Hampshire and Surrey 2nds.
He compiled 2,212 Southern Premier League runs at 45.14 with five centuries and 14 half-centuries. His highest innings was 159 against Bournemouth in 2016, the year he compiled his highest seasonal haul of 664 runs.
Hay also claimed 111 league wickets at 17.74 with a best of 6-36 against New Milton in 2019 - part of his highest 41-wicket seasonal total.
A wicketkeeper-batsman who was unlucky to play only one first-class game, in which he took five catches.
He played 92 Southern Premier League games for Portsmouth between 2000-2006 with 1,327 runs, 73 catches and 15 stumpings.
His top score was 87 as Portsmouth chased 239 for victory against Totton & Eling at St Helens in 2005
Barnes also played for Hampshire 2nds 11 times in 2004 and 2005 before joining Warwickshire in 2006.
The former South Downs College student made just one first class appearance for Warwickshire in 2007, taking five catches in a Championship game against Yorkshire. In his only List A game for the county, against Lancashire the same year, he also took five catches.
Portsmouth's leading all-rounder for more than a decade. ‘He was unbelievably good at slip and so nice he could never sledge an opponent,’ said Marston.
He scored over 1,000 runs for Portsmouth - with a top score of 69 v Bashley 2nds in 2013 - and took over 160 wickets. His best haul was 5-23 v OTs & Romsey in 2016 - three weeks after taking 5-36 v Bournemouth.
Dawson moved onto OTs & Romsey in 2020 and earlier this season bagged a new SL best 6-32 against Liphook.
The left-arm spinner played 213 times for Hampshire and took over 500 first-class wickets.
He made his Hampshire debut in 1984, having already played 16 first class games for Middlesex, with his last appearance in 1998.
Maru bagged 504 first class wickets at 33.62 (BB 8-41 v Kent, 1989) and also took 82 List A wickets.
He played a handful of games for Portsmouth in 1994 and 1997, but between 1999 and 2002 took 94 wickets - his best was 37 in 2001 when Portsmouth won the SPL Division 2 title. His best bowling for Portsmouth was 6-20 against Andover in 1999.
In 2015 he took 42 wickets in just nine games for Wisborough Green in the Sussex League Division 5 at an average of just 8.30 - and with seven hauls of five or more wickets!
‘A legend in local league cricket,’ said Marston. ‘His control of line and length was superb when bowling right-arm seam. He was one of the most economical bowlers ever, just dot ball after dot ball.’
Rudder bagged 535 Southern League wickets between 1969 and 1999 at 19.03 - the fourth highest in the SL during that 30-year period - and also played for Havant, Cormorants, Gosport Borough and Waterlooville. His best SL figures were 8-13 for Havant against Waterlooville in 1977.
‘A club legend who took over 600 Southern League wickets bowling left-arm spin,’ said Marston.
In total, he claimed 666 wickets - the most in SL history between 1969 and 1999 at 14.22
He twice took 9-63 while playing for South Hants Touring Club, in 1975 against Waterlooville and six years later against Petersfield.
He took the most wickets in a Southern League season on three occasions - 1981 (42), 1982 (34) and 1993 (41). He was also the joint highest with Chris Allen (36) in 1992.