Mervyn Kitchen

Last updated

Mervyn Kitchen
Personal information
Full nameMervyn John Kitchen
Born (1940-08-01) 1 August 1940 (age 77)
Nailsea, Somerset, England
Batting Left-handed
Bowling Right-arm medium
Role Umpire, Batsman
Domestic team information
19601979 Somerset
First-class debut28 May 1960 Somerset  v  Middlesex
Last First-class 23 June 1979 Somerset  v  Cambridge University
List A debut22 May 1963 Somerset  v  Glamorgan
Last List A 17 June 1979 Somerset  v  Essex
Umpiring information
Tests  umpired 20 (1990–2000)
ODIs  umpired 28 (1983–2001)
Career statistics
Competition First-class List A
Runs scored152303388
Batting average 26.2522.43
Top score189116
Balls bowled181125
Wickets 25
Bowling average 54.5019.40
5 wickets in innings 00
10 wickets in match0n/a
Best bowling1/42/34
Catches/stumpings 157/52/
Source: CricketArchive, 10 October 2009

Mervyn John Kitchen (born 1 August 1940), is a former English first-class cricketer and international umpire. [1] In his playing days he was a left-handed batsman for Somerset County Cricket Club, making 15,230 runs in his 354 first-class games between 1960 and 1979. He topped the Somerset averages in 1966 and 1968. After retiring as a player he went on to become a first-class cricket umpire and he umpired in 20 Test matches and 28 One-Day Internationals before retiring from that at the age of 65 in 2005.

First-class cricket is an official classification of the highest-standard international or domestic matches in the sport of cricket. A first-class match is of three or more days' scheduled duration between two sides of eleven players each and is officially adjudged to be worthy of the status by virtue of the standard of the competing teams. Matches must allow for the teams to play two innings each although, in practice, a team might play only one innings or none at all.

Cricket Team sport played with bats and balls

Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players on a field at the centre of which is a 20-metre (22-yard) pitch with a wicket at each end, each comprising two bails balanced on three stumps. The batting side scores runs by striking the ball bowled at the wicket with the bat, while the bowling and fielding side tries to prevent this and dismiss each player. Means of dismissal include being bowled, when the ball hits the stumps and dislodges the bails, and by the fielding side catching the ball after it is hit by the bat, but before it hits the ground. When ten players have been dismissed, the innings ends and the teams swap roles. The game is adjudicated by two umpires, aided by a third umpire and match referee in international matches. They communicate with two off-field scorers who record the match's statistical information.

Umpire (cricket) Person who has the authority to make judgements on the cricket field

In cricket, an umpire is a person who has the authority to make decisions about events on the cricket field, according to the Laws of Cricket. Besides making decisions about legality of delivery, appeals for wickets and general conduct of the game in a legal manner, the umpire also keeps a record of the deliveries and announces the completion of an over.


Background and early cricket career

Kitchen was born in Nailsea, Somerset where his father played local club cricket. [2] He was educated locally at Backwell Secondary Modern School. He joined the playing staff at Somerset County Cricket Club as a 16-year-old in 1957 and appeared in the next three seasons for the county's second eleven in Minor Counties matches and, from 1959, in games in the newly constituted Second Eleven Championship. [3] [4]

Nailsea town in North Somerset, England

Nailsea is a town in the unitary authority of North Somerset in the ceremonial county of Somerset, England, approximately 8 miles (13 km) southwest of Bristol, and about 11 miles (18 km) northeast of the seaside resort of Weston-super-Mare. The nearest village is Backwell, which lies south of Nailsea on the opposite side of the Bristol to Exeter railway line. Nailsea is a commuter town with a population of 15,630.

Somerset County of England

Somerset is a county in South West England which borders Gloucestershire and Bristol to the north, Wiltshire to the east, Dorset to the south-east and Devon to the south-west. It is bounded to the north and west by the Severn Estuary and the Bristol Channel, its coastline facing southeastern Wales. Its traditional border with Gloucestershire is the River Avon. Somerset's county town is Taunton.

Backwell School School in Backwell, North Somerset, England

Backwell School is a secondary academy school in Backwell, Somerset, England. It is considered to be one of the best-performing state schools in England, leading results at both GCSE and A level in the area and consistently being rated “Outstanding” by Ofsted.

He made his debut for the Somerset first eleven in 1960 as a middle-order batsman, but made little impact in that or the next season, and in 1962 and 1963, although he played in around half of Somerset's first-class matches, his batting average was below 20 and his place was often dependent on injuries to other players. At this stage in his career, he was primarily a defensive batsman "which suited neither his temperament, for he was not a selfish man, nor his technique", according to one history of Somerset cricket. [5] He played in most of Somerset's matches in the 1964 season and finally averaged more than 20 runs per innings, but returned to inconsistent performances and an uncertain place in the team in 1965. [6]

Somerset regular

At the end of the 1965 season, Peter Wight, who had been a fixture in the Somerset side since 1955, batting at No 3, but whose form had declined markedly in the previous three seasons, was not re-engaged for the following year. The resulting vacancy in the Somerset batting line-up in 1966 was filled by Kitchen and he responded with his most successful season, finishing top of the county's batting averages with 1422 runs in all first-class matches. [6] The batting style had changed as well, and Kitchen was a much more attacking player than he had been, exemplified by an innings in July in a non-first-class match against the International Cavaliers team at Bath, where he won the match by hitting both of the last two balls of a 38-over match from the South African Test bowler Neil Adcock for six. [7] After this innings, Kitchen became a much more confident batsman and in the space of just over a week at the end of the season he made his first two first-class centuries and was awarded his county cap: "Until then in 142 innings he had not scored a century and had averaged under 20," says the history of Somerset cricket. [5]

Peter Bernard Wight was a Guyanese first-class cricketer who played for Somerset, Canterbury and British Guiana. Wight was a prolific run scorer at the top of the order, scoring 16,965 runs during his thirteen years at Somerset; and at the time of his death only Harold Gimblett had made more runs for the county. After playing, he became an umpire in English first-class cricket, standing in matches from 1966 to 1995.

The International Cavaliers were an ad hoc cricket team made up of famous cricketers in order to encourage local cricket. Their teams included many prominent cricketers from the 1940s, 1950s, 1960s and 1970s as many retired veterans and talented young players were in the team at one point or another. International tours were arranged to South Africa in 1960-61, Africa and India in 1962-63 and the West Indies in 1964-65, 1965–66 and 1969-70. These were usually made up of Test players whose countries were not touring that season or who were not required for their Test side.

Test cricket the longest form of the sport of cricket; so called due to its long, grueling nature

Test cricket is the form of the sport of cricket with the longest duration, and is considered the game's highest standard. Test matches are played between national representative teams with "Test status", as determined and conferred by the International Cricket Council (ICC). The term Test stems from the fact of the form's long, gruelling matches being both mentally and physically testing. Two teams of 11 players each play a four-innings match, which may last up to five days. It is generally considered the most complete examination of a team's endurance and ability.

See also

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  1. "Mervyn Kitchen". Retrieved 2011-02-09.
  2. Iain Sproat (ed). Debrett's Cricketers' Who's Who (1980 ed.). Debrett's Peerage Ltd. p. 87. ISBN   0-905649-26-5.
  3. "Minor Counties Championship Matches played by Mervyn Kitchen". Retrieved 2011-12-18.
  4. "Second Eleven Championship Matches played by Mervyn Kitchen". Retrieved 2011-12-18.
  5. 1 2 Roebuck, Peter (1991). From Sammy to Jimmy: The Official History of Somerset County Cricket Club. London: Partridge Press. p. 313. ISBN   1-85225-085-2.
  6. 1 2 "First-class Batting and Fielding in each season by Mervyn Kitchen". Retrieved 2011-12-19.
  7. "Scorecard: Somerset v International Cavaliers". 1966-07-17. Retrieved 2011-12-19.