The opening bowlers in this team were Glyn White and Wynford Cox, a great clubman who I'm sure many of you will remember. Glyn's brothers Sid and Lewis played in the same side, they had moved from Gorseinon to Ebbw Vale when the new Steelworks opened just before the war.
Jack Grealy was a giant fast bowler who frightened the life out of 14 year olds in the nets - he was a plain clothes detective but wore a yellow waistcoat and loud check jackets.
Jack Cope was a top order class batsman who had played Minor Counties Cricket and professional soccer for Bury in the football league. I remember him impressing young players with the maxim that anybody could push singles into the off-side but it took a good player to do the same off his legs. He was firmly of the opinion that singles were the foundation of an innings - the boundaries would come. Jack for all his sins was the father of Mike!! (sorry Mike).
Another first team stalwart was Norman Darby, who was a grand left handed batsman and a more than useful right arm spinner. If you don't know or haven't heard of Norman Darby, I don't believe it!!! - what a clubman he was until his death in September 2007. What some may not know was that Norman was a first rate full back with Abertillery for many years and a very handy single figure golfer.
All rounder sportsmen abounded in those days and notable Ebbw Vale cricketers who excelled at other sports include John Pugh a hard hitting left hand bat and brilliant catcher and fieldsman who once told me that "if I didn't have the guts to pitch the ball up don't bother to bowl". This may have sounded a little harsh to a 17 year old but it was tempered by "if they hit it in the air near me, they're out". Good advice John Pugh!! John of course was better know as the try scoring right wing for Ebbw Vale in their heyday who regularly got thirty tries a season.
Another First Team batsman I remember was the schoolmaster Glyn Powell, who always fielded first slip and had played for both the Town's Rugby and Soccer teams.
John Watkins played at full back for Tredegar R.F.C. and together with Bob Parsons later formed a very handy golf combination - anyone taking a half-crown (12p) had truly earned it.
Of the characters in the Second Team, the aforementioned John Desmond - later Secretary of the Badminton Club was outstanding and closely followed by Gwilym (Spargo) Lewis an opening batsman, short in stature but big on cutting and hooking who regularly delighted in scoring loads of runs. Gwilym who treated all opponents the same... rudely!! Once replied to a query about the health of his Dad, by Stan York of Usk in the Abergavenny 6-a-Side Competition with the words "Bugger off Stan, I'm here to get a fifty not talk to you".
Horace Payne (wicket-keeper and big hitter) had returned home after war (WW2 that is) service in the Far East and used to delight us with strings of jokes and tales of removing gold teeth from the dead enemy!!