Those Six Sixes – by Bleddyn Jones.

A group of us from Gowerton Grammar School were there at St.Helen’s in 1968 to see Gary Sobers` six sixes. We had left school by then but continued to be Student Members and were seated high in the members enclosure slightly to right of sightscreen looking down over where he caught the ball. There was some immediate confusion – I told the boys ‘its a six’, as he had fallen over the boundary, so we all placed our arms in the air and were the first to signal a six, although unofficially! The umpires were clearly unable to see the actual details of what had happened, but they were perhaps moved by the signals from the crowd?

When at school, and for several years afterwards, we used to sit in that high position looking down on the square and as close to the line of bowling as possible. There you could appreciate the finery of Don`s cutters, the swing and seam of Malcolm Nash etc. Sometimes our former Headmaster, John Morse, would walk around the ground in his impeccable linen suit and Panama Hat, and would pick out his former pupils and would sometimes sit for a short conversation. He would sometimes give the oldest boy present some five shillings to buy ice creams to all the others.

St.Helen’s – as seen from the TV gantry where the BBC camera’s captured Gary Sobers’ feat for posterity. Photo Credit – Glamorgan Cricket Archives.

Another treat, in that same position high above the sightscreen in the St Helen`s members enclosure would be the conversation, in Welsh, of a group of supporters from Southern Cardiganshire. They were usually one row in front of use or one behind, depending on who got there first. It only dawned on me some years later as to who they actually were: there were several persons who had won the Chair and Crown of the National Eisteddfod, including Dic Jones and T Llew Jones. The later was captain of his local side and was a good left-arm spinner, an international chess player and the most popular author of adventure stories for Welsh children, including exploits of Twm Sion Cati (the Welsh equivalent of Robin Hood)  and the seafaring tales of Harry Morgan and Bartholomew Roberts plundering around the Caribbean, as well as detective stories that occupied us during our long winters.

They took a large round biscuit time full of food, which they referred to as ‘y drwm’ (the drum) and there would be discussions about the game, some live poetry in alliterative verse, and debates about when to go to the Pavilion for a ‘gwydriad’ or glass. There were also discussions on where to stop on the way home each night, and they often plumped for The White Hart Inn in Llanddarog! Mr Wyn Jones, The Senior History Master at the adjacent Gowerton Girls school, would often join us for company and would enjoy the banter with the boys, although we were all scientists!

Leave a Reply