Truro cricket celebrates 150 years of history

A cricket club in Truro was started in 1868, enjoying many peaks and troughs, along with a number of incarnations along the way.

This season celebrates 150 years since cricket began in the township and on Saturday evening, with Malcolm Linke as a key note speaker, the Truro cricketers celebrated the magical milestone.

Two decades after Truro’s first recorded game, at a meeting held in Nuriootpa on September 8, 1888, the club had a view to inaugurate with the Tanunda, Nuriootpa, Freeling, Kapunda and Angaston clubs to form the Barossa Cricket Association.

S H Davey, from Nuriootpa, was voted to the chair along with members from the aforementioned teams.  

The Freeling team ceased to exist shortly after, making it a five-team competition for the opening season.

William “WC” Bennett recorded the first century in the association for the Truro Cricket Club making 109, in a total of 319, against Angaston in the opening round.

Other key performers in the game were Robert Lanyon with 59 and W. Linn, who remained 64 not out.

For Angaston Tom Hurn finished with 5/78 and in reply Angaston were one for 10 – sadly records of the day, did not confirm what happened to conclude the match.  

During the season Laynon also made 94 against Nuriootpa and took 6/39 against Angaston.

In another game, J Pellow made 114 in just a 95-minute stay at the crease and with Bennett, who made 83 in this match against Kapunda, delivered a brilliant 205-run opening partnership.

W Linn also collected 6/37 with the ball in a clash with Nuriootpa.

Mr. Charles G Varley donated a silver cup for the initial premiers.

Truro was unbeaten across the season, collecting eight wins and four draws, to finish as the inaugural champions.

Bennett, with 500 runs at an average of 41.66, along with Pellew (300 at 60) and Laynon (310 at 51) all were impressive with the willow in the opening season of Barossa cricket.

Tanunda left the competition the next summer (1889-90) and with a nine-game season, Kapunda finished with six wins to secure the local crown, one win ahead of Truro and Nuriootpa on five.

Before he left the district after five years as the head teacher at the Truro school, Bennett continued to excel, taking 6/28 with the ball against Angaston and making 82 against the men of Nuriootpa.

In the season before the commencement of the Barossa competition, Truro played Tanunda in the middle of February and made the outstanding total of 507, with William Bennett scoring a double century, before being dismissed for 216, while Lanyon helped out with 125.

By the 1891-92 season, Greenock joined the competition for a short portion of the summer and Tanunda returned.

A Pellew also joined his bother J Pellew in the Truro team.

J Pellew was a star against Angaston in a game during the campaign, making 60 with the bat and taking 6/18 with the ball.

Regarded as one of the prettiest bats of the competition, A E Weeks made a 169 not out in the second innings of a match against Nuriootpa and also remained undefeated on 127 in a contest with Angaston.

The next season Tanunda and Truro combined and were called the Barossa Cricket Club.

The Barossa Cricket Club shared the premiership with Kapunda in 1893-94, with both clubs collecting five wins, a pair of losses and two draws.

Weeks and S E A Plush were among the chief personnel with the willow in that season, while J Pellew and Weeks were the most productive bowlers.

As mentioned last week in the “In the Zone” column, there was over a century between Truro’s first and second premiership.

The Truro side won an A5 title in 1991-92 defeating Greenock.  

Sam Donovan current TCC captain 2018-19 - Malcolm Linke  - who was captain in 1978-79.

Sam Donovan current TCC captain 2018-19 - Malcolm Linke - who was captain in 1978-79.