Godmamchester Town stalwart Kevin Clement reached a magnificent cricketing milestone last Saturday.
The 63 year-old claimed the 2,000th wicket of a career in club cricket which has spanned almost half-a-century when playing for Town’s second team in a Hunts League triumph against Blunham 2nds at The Parks.
The Bedfordshire side’s Lewis Barden was Clement’s landmark victim during the Division Two clash – reduced to 25 overs per side to allow for essential World Cup viewing - which the Town outfit won by 61 runs.
“I’m tremendously proud and very grateful to the fielders and wicket-keepers who have held some stunning catches off my bowling over the years,” said Clement, who took his first senior wicket back in 1972.
“It was for Hurley CC – a village between Henley and Maidenhead – although I’m afraid I don’t have any collection of it!
“I didn’t start bowling regularly until the age of 23, but I was fortunate to play a lot of league cricket in competitions where there we no bowling limitations.
“I can’t see many players getting close to 2,000 in the future given the restrictions now in place.”
Clement’s list of victims includes some big names. England players Chris Broad, Tom Graveney and Aftab Habib have all fallen to his medium pacers along with England Women legend Charlotte Edwards.
His best return was a 9-66 haul against Cambridge St Giles 2nds 20 years ago.
“I’ve always bowled medium pace seam - which was obviously somewhat quicker all those decades ago – with the ability to move the ball in and out, and to be able to bowl parsimoniously,” added Clement, the author of ‘The Forgotten County’ which charts the history of Huntingdonshire cricket
“Although the 9-66 are my best figures, I think my most enjoyable day was taking 5-21 after scoring a century with the bat in a Rutland League game against Buckiminster in 2002.”
Clement’s milestone wicket last Saturday was soon followed by number 2,001 as he finished with figures of 2-32 as Godmanchester 2nds restricted Blunham 2nds to 128-9 in pursuit of their own posting of 189-3.
The majority of those runs were provided by opener Nick Willmer who hit a fine 105 – including 19 fours and a six – from just 84 balls. Matthew Luck added a useful 42.
And Clement continued to rack up the wickets the following day when taking 3-19 during an outing for the Godmanchester third team in their Division Five defeat against Houghton & Wyton.