former england and yorkshire spinner geoff cope will bring down the curtain tomorrow evening (tuesday) on the worcestershire cricket society’s winter programme in the graeme hick pavilion (7.30pm start).
cope played first-class cricket for the tykes from 1966 to 1980 and ended his career with 686 first class wickets at an average of 24.70.
he appeared in three tests, all during the 1977-78 tour of pakistan.
cope came close to taking a hat-trick on his international debut when, having dismissed abdul qadir and sarfraz nawaz, he had iqbal qasim caught at slip by mike brearley.
but, as qasim was heading for the pavilion after being given out, he was recalled by captain brearley who was unsure whether the catch was clean.
cope recalled: “all the lads around mike were adamant he had caught it a foot off the ground, but he said, ‘no, for the best interests of this series i’m going to bring him back.’
“so he brought him back – and for the best interests of the series, six of us were lbw in our first innings! it happened, but it was a moment of disappointment because something like that on a test debut is very special.”
after retiring from playing, cope was elected to the yorkshire cricket committee and became director of cricket in 2002.
he played a key role was in current ecb chairman colin graves becoming involved with the county when they were facing financial challenges.
cope began his playing career wearing glasses and, in 1972, turned to contact lenses but a gradual deterioration in his sight left him officially registered blind and he now has a guide dog.
non society members can attend tomorrow evening for an admission charge of £3.
*members are reminded the main entrance to the ground at the graeme hick end of the ground will be closed tomorrow evening due to the ongoing road works.
anyone attending tomorrow’s meeting should enter the ground via the premier inn car park – and also exit New Road via the same entrance.