WISHING OUR HERO Joe Solomon HAPPY 90th BIRTHDAY tomorrow

first_imgJoseph Stanislaus SOLOMON, AA, was born at Port Mourant, Corentyne, Berbice, British Guiana on August 26, 1930, the third of four sons and one daughter.Born to John Solomon, an employee of the Port Mourant Sugar Estate. Joe and his loving wife, Betty– now deseased– are the proud parents of four sons and two daughters and grandkids.He followed his father in being employed at the Port Mourant Sugar Estate, as a clerk in his youth. As a member of the Port Mourant Cricket team, he captained them in the senior division cricket competitions in Berbice. He would later be employed as a National Coach for Booker Sugar Estates/GUYSUCO.As a young boy, batting right handed from # 1 to # 6 positions in the line-up and occasionally bowling right-arm leg spin, Solomon learned to play cricket at Port Mourant, in company with the great Rohan B. Kanhai, CCH; Basil F. Butcher, AA; Ivan S. Madray–all former Test cricketers– and a number of other kids.Their bats were made of coconut branch or wood and the balls were fashioned from condensed milk tin, balata and a variety of other round object; however, they would later start using sponge balls or discarded cricket balls.Solomon first represented Berbice in 1955, under the captaincy of retired testite, Robert Christiani, at the inter-county level when they opposed Essequibo and Demerara in the Inter-county tournament for the Jones Cup at Bourda.He went on to captain Berbice in this tournament in 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, 1964 and 1965. In 1960, Solomon also captained Berbice in a 3-day First Class match versus the MCC at Rose Hall Canje, when he made his highest First Class score of 201 not out.He again captained Berbice at Rose Hall, Canje, in a 3-day match versus an E.W.Swanton XI at the same venue in 1961. He captained British Guiana/Guyana at the regional and international levels on numerous occasions. He first represented British Guiana in 1957 and scored successive hundreds while batting in his first three matches to mark a wonderful start of a brilliant First Class career.He made his test debut on December 12, 1958 for the West Indies, being the 5th Berbician and 5th member of the Port Mourant Cricket Club to do so. He was also the 5th British Guianese to make his test debut for the West Indies within a period of nineteen months between 1957 and 1958. The others being Rohan B. Kanhai, Lancelot Richard Gibbs, CCH; Ivan Samuel Madray and Basil F. Butcher, AA. This group was popularly known as the Phenomenal Five.He was hailed world-wide as the most dependable batsman of his time and the best fieldsman too. In the tied Test, West Indies vs Australia at Brisbane, in 1960, six Australians were run out in the match, three in the first innings and three in the second innings, with Solomon accounting for one is the first innings. In the second innings, Conrad Hunte, with a direct throw to the wicketkeeper from deep mid-wicket, ran out the first Australian during the latter part of the match.Solomon followed by running out a second Australian with a direct throw to the wicket from cover point. Finally, with the scores tied, Solomon swooped in from square leg with one stump in view and in one motion threw down the wicket for his third run out of the match. A miss of the stumps from square leg would have given Australia victory.Both the players and spectators exploded in wild jubilation as though the West Indies had won the match. The Australians showed their love in wild celebration as they escorted Captain Sir Frank Worrell and his team in a loud motorcade to the airport for their departure from Brisbane.After the death of Glendon Gibbs, who was then serving as the Guyana Cricket Board Secretary, in February 1979, Solomon was appointed Acting Secretary, and when President Berkley Gaskin passed on in May, 1979, Berbice Cricket Board president and 1st Vice President of the Guyana Cricket Board, Lennox Phillips, was appointed Acting President of the Guyana Cricket Board until the Annual General Meeting in September, 1979. When Solomon was elected President, serving until August 1980, when he was succeeded by Major /General Norman Mc Lean with then Deputy Commissioner of Police, Balram Raghubir as secretary. Solomon also served as Selection Committee Chairman, Guyana Representative on the West Indies Cricket Board and Regional Selector while serving on the Guyana Cricket Board. During his term as Coach at the Guyana Sugar Estates, access to all Sugar Estate grounds, housing and facilities were readily available for all levels of cricket. It was also during his term as a Selector that all cricketers knew that they would be fairly considered for selection to the National or West Indies team.He was honored by the Government of Guyana with the Golden Arrow of Achievement( AA). In 2008, he was inducted into the Berbice Cricket Board Cricket Hall of Fame. In 2009, he was inducted into the Port Mourant Cricket Club Hall of Fame. In 2018, Solomon was honored by the Berbice Cricket Board with its Tribute to Hero Award. He is a member of the Phenomenal Five and Berbice All time cricket team.His service to the sport has been long, dedicated and of an exceptionally high quality and he is worthy of 10,000 accolades.Career Span 1956 to 1973.Here are his stats:Batting and fielding averagesMat   Inns  NO    Runs  HS    Ave   100   50    CtTests 27    46    7     1326  100*  34    1     9     13First-class104156285318201*41.54122746List A210111001Bowling averages MatInnsBallsRuns WktsBBIBBMAveEconSRTests27147022684  1/20  1/23672.29175.5First-class104 36591950514/.28 38.233.1971.7List A2 1291 1/9 1/994.512Now that he is in the nervous 90’s, no one knows more than Joe how to reach 100; as a coach he will tell you to first communicate with your partner. You should only be defending your wicket, let the wide balls go, push through the gaps and drive the balls that are there to be driven. Run ones and twos and hope for the fours.Hit everything on the carpet. Forget the lofted drives, the threes and the sixes. Like Joe, you will get there. Yes, you can.We love, admire and respect you Joe. You are our Hero, have a Happy Birthday, keep smiling. Mortimer GeorgeSecretary, Berbice Cricket Board– 1976 to 1983. 1987 Life Member BCBCaption: Former Guyana and West Indies batsman, Joe SolomonPhoto saved: Joe Solomonlast_img


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