Nostalgia: City match for Compton – the Alastair Cook of his day

Denis Compton leaves the field at Priory Park, Chichester, surrounded by autograph hunters
Denis Compton leaves the field at Priory Park, Chichester, surrounded by autograph hunters
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With the Ashes under way, this photograph from our archive shows a star-studded match between Priory Park and a team skippered by the former Sussex captain, James Langridge, in 1956, which opened the cricket week.

The 12-a-side game was played in front of a crowd of 5,000, which raised £192 for Langridge’s testimonial fund through a collection, sale of programmes, and hire of deckchairs.

Langridge’s team not only included past and present Sussex players but Middlesex and England stars Bill Edrich and Denis Compton.

Doubtless the huge crowd had been drawn to Priory Park to see Compton bat; he was a national sporting icon – the Alastair Cook of his day.

Together with Edrich, he had revived the fortunes of post-war English cricket.

Here he is exiting the field in our picture, surrounded by autograph hunters.