Hampshire Cricket History

David Turner
October 28, 2016, 8:02 am
Filed under: Uncategorized

Left-handed batsman David Turner was with Hampshire for 24 consecutive seasons, the longest by any post-war cricketer and – if you include the break for war in the careers of Phil Mead and contemporaries – the longest ‘unbroken’ in our history.

He was a promising schoolboy cricketer in his native Wiltshire, and pursued by a few counties chose Hampshire. He made his debut at Bournemouth in 1966 when just 17 although it took him some years to establish himself.

Turner DR sig.JPG

In late 1969 at the Oval he hit Surrey for 181* and still only 20, had a promising future. In 1972 he hit a marvellous century against the Australians who thought he would play for England and as a fine outfielder he was invited to be 12th man in a Test v West Indies in 1973. He suffered an eye injury however in a match v Gloucs and his career never quite reached the heights necessary to compete with a generally strong England batting line-up.

Nonetheless, through the years he contributed to a number of Hampshire’s successes and he is the only man to have won a County Championship, Sunday League and Lord’s Final with the county. As his career approached its conclusion, it was fitting perhaps that he was with his captain at the wicket when Hampshire won that first Final in 1988. In the previous year, at 38, he had averaged almost 50 in first-class cricket including 184* v Gloucs.

After retiring, he went home to Wiltshire and took over from his father in the family business, repairing shoes. He often attends our reunions.

7 Comments so far
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One of my heroes in my youth – although, living in London, I didn’t often see him play. I did see him at Lord’s in a bizarre single wicket competition in 1967. Each county had a representative (Hampshire chose theirs by having a single wicket competition within the squad), and Turner was ours; plus there were a number of foreign stars.
It was played out over two days – Turner beat Hanif Mohammed and Alan Dixon, then lost to J F Harvey (although I am not sure who he was!)

Comment by Ageas

Good story Ageas – and absolutely right. I think DRT actually won the Hampshire single wicket twice, despite all-rounders like Sainsbury, Jesty and Castell. JF Harvey played for Derbyshire and I believe he then coached at Bradfield where a certain MCJN was a pupil.

Comment by pompeypop

I thought Harvey was Derbyshire too, but a quick search on Cricinfo didn’t reveal him. Perhaps it was too early in the morning for Cricinfo…or for me!

Comment by Ageas

Here you go Ageas

Comment by James

I am glad Dave mentioned DT’s batting against the Australians at Northlands Road in 1972. He was in supreme form scoring, from memory 132, and 21, even putting Dennis Lillee to the sword. And yes I was lucky enough to see most of both knocks as, in those days, I worked in Southampton at a job which allowed me to leave the office. The Australians voted him the best young player they met on tour.

DT’s bread and butter shot was the lofted pull shot square of the wicket. I do believe that when in form he hit the ball harder than any Hampshire player of my time. I remember particularly his thunderous cover drives. DT was very quick over the ground and an outstanding cover point.

Comment by Ian Laidlaw

It’s not struck me before, but I wonder if David Turner wasn’t a lot like Graham Thorpe as a batsman?

Comment by Jeremy

……two tough competitors for sure; David Turner hit the ball square of the wicket very hard and certainly bears comparison to Gordon Greenidge when he hit the ball straight.

Comment by StephenFH

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