Sarisbury Athletic CC in mourning for club president Brian Knapp

Sarisbury Athletic cricket is mourning the loss of long-serving club president Brian Knapp, who has passed away after a short illness. He was 84.

Brian Knapp, left, pictured with Sarisbury Athletic CC skipper Ricky Rawlins.
Brian Knapp, left, pictured with Sarisbury Athletic CC skipper Ricky Rawlins.

Brian was a stalwart of the club and served it with distinction for over 60 years.

He was 'signed' by Charlie Rowell from nearby Bursledon Brickworks CC and proved to be an invaluable and accurate medium pace bowler.

His nagging accuracy and late movement off the seam bagged Brian a shed-load of wickets.

He was also a hard-hitting lower order batsman and his favourite shot, a slog sweep, would invariably fly over the Sarisbury Green pavilion.

Brian was the proud winner of the batting award in Division 2 of the Solent League in 1983.

Brian fulfilled many roles over the years including colts coordinator, secretary, umpire, chairman and finally president.

As colts coordinator, he would drive out of his way to pick players up so they could play in matches. Without Brian's generosity, some boys would not have started their cricket careers at all.

On retiring from playing, Brian became a much-respected umpire and was a founder member of the Southern Premier League Panel.

He was passionate about Sarisbury Athletic CC, having seen the club rise from the regional divisions of the Hampshire League to ECB Southern Premier League status.

In his later days he would always be at Allotment Road to watch the 1st XI play, right up until the end of his life.

Brian was devoted to the club and he was very proud when his late son, Colin, was appointed 1st team captain from 1988-92.

A man of great intellect, his head was full of cricket knowledge and many other sports.

One of life's gentlemen, Brian's passing will have an impact far beyond the cricket community.