who we've helped

The Benevolent Fund has helped many players over the years with a variety of different issues, some of which have been confidential and sensitive cases. 

Below is just a handful of the people we have proudly provided assistance to...

 


 

ALAN WASSELL

 

Alan Wassell, the former Hampshire slow left-armer, is making good progress after suffering a debilitating stroke last year,  thanks to help from the Professional Cricketers’ Association Benevolent Fund.

Wassell, 75, lost his speech and was confined to a wheelchair after he suffered the stroke in January 2014 but he has now regained some of his mobility after having regular physiotherapy sessions that were funded by the PCA Benevolent Fund, which is sponsored by Royal London.

Peter Haslop, another former Hampshire player, suggested that Wassell approach the PCA for help and the Benevolent Fund put him in touch with Hobbs Rehabilitation, which are based near his home in Fareham.

“The physio that Alan has been working with has done wonders for him,” said Wassell’s wife Joan.

“He’s now walking with a stick and he is able to walk round the block. He’s had regular sessions with the physio coming to the house. She has been a great help to him and he has got a lot of faith in her.”

Wassell, who played for Hampshire from 1957 to 1966, is an active member of the PCA and had attended one of the Association’s regular Past Player Days.

“Alan knows all about the PCA and we went up to one of their Past Player Days at Arundel a couple of years ago which we thoroughly enjoyed,” Joan said.

“It was Peter Haslop who suggested to Alan that he got in touch with the PCA to see if they could help him because he knew other people in different circumstances who had been helped by the Benevolent Fund.

“We got in touch and they said they were very willing to assist us and they have been a great help and support to us.”

Wassell hopes to complete his rehabilitation and has set himself the target of being able to play golf once again.

“That is his aim. At the moment he has a bit of a problem with his shoulder which restricts his swing but he has been up to the range a few times,” Joan said.

“One of his grand-daughters gave him a birthday present where he can go to a range where they have putting and a meal is included so he’s looking forward to doing that.”

The Benevolent Fundsponsored by Royal Londonis part of the PCA’s commitment to helping current and former players and their dependants in times of hardship and upheaval or to readjust to the world beyond the game.

The Fund also supports players and their dependants who might be in need of a helping hand with medical advice, a much-needed operation or those who require specialist advice, care or assistance.


More information please contact Jason Ratcliffe 07768 558050
 


 

 


 

JACK BOND

 

Jack Bond captained Lancashire to three Gillette Cups and two Sunday League titles during his five years as Lancashire captain and re-joined them as manager after a season with Nottinghamshire in 1974. He scored more than 12,000 runs in 362 first-class matches at an average of 25.90 – and 698 runs in 99 List A appearances. Bond was on the first-class umpires’ panel from 1988 to 1997 and has since retained a close involvement with Lancashire, his native county, working three days a week as a member of Matt Merchant’s ground staff.  When he attended the inaugural meeting of the PCA at Edgbaston in 1967, Bond could not have envisaged that he would one day benefit from the organisation’s members’ services.


Bond, 82, damaged his left hip when he fell in the shower and approached the PCA for assistance after he became frustrated at a long delay for treatment on the National Health Service and was in intolerable pain. The PCA Benevolent Fund funded an emergency hip operation for Bond at Manchester’s Spire Hospital.

He spent Christmas in hospital after the three hour operation but he was discharged in time to celebrate New Year at home where he is now recuperating. He hopes to return to Old Trafford when he has fully recovered from his operation.

 


 

Winston Davis

 

Back in 1997 Winston Davis was helping clear land for a new church in his native Caribbean when his life was turned upside down. Soon after his retirement from cricket the West Indian was paralysed from the chest down when a branch fell on him. When flown to England for treatment it was revealed to Winston that he would never walk again and remain in a wheelchair for the rest of his life.

Much of the manner in which the former right-arm seamer has rebuilt his life is down to his own determination, but he is nevertheless ‘eternally grateful’ for the ongoing help afforded him by the PCA Benevolent Fund when he has needed it. A grant from the fund first paid for a specially adapted computer that helps him to stay in contact with family back home. More recently, money raised from the Big Bike Ride 2013 meant that Winston received a new motor vehicle which allows him to stay mobile and venture away from his home in Worcestershire.

 


 

DARREN COUSINS


During his cricketing career, Darren was a whole-hearted, fast-bowler, who excelled in one- day matches, returning impressive results. Unfortunately, his career, spanning 1993 to 2002, was plagued by injuries despite playing 50 first-class matches and 95 one-day games.

Like so many cricketers, his playing days finished before he was ready, and despite attempts to get fit through multiple operations, his professional days ended.

After struggling to come to terms with the loss of cricket in his life, Darren has had to overcome multiple challenges. The Benevolent Fund has given continuous support to Darren, particularly after he tried to take his own life in March 2011. His life is very much on track, with a new fulfilling job, a new house and a lovely daughter to dote on.

 

 
  
  

 


 

DAVID THOMAS

 

David Thomas was a left-arm all-rounder who flirted with an England place and helped Surrey to the 1982 NatWest Trophy. Born in Warwickshire, but a Surrey player from his debut in 1977 to 1987, Thomas was a hard-hitting lower-order batsman, and a left-arm bowler capable of sharp pace and swing.

He claimed 57 first-class wickets in 1983 and 60 in 1984, but despite being named in England Test squads, he never made it into the final 11. He was 12th man for the 1983 Trent Bridge Test against New Zealand, and left Surrey for Gloucestershire at the end of 1987.

It was there, after seeking treatment for the recurrence of a groin injury, that he was diagnosed with the Multiple Sclerosis that plagued him for the rest of his life, and forced his retirement from the professional game aged 29.

Sadly, David passed away during the summer of 2012, after a long battle with MS. The PCA Benevolent Fund has worked with 'Teddy' and Louise over the last two years, attempting to install a specialist IT device for David's wheelchair, and providing him with ongoing physiotherapy to make him comfortable. The PCA also provided professional support for both in David’s final days.

 
  
 
  
 
  
 

 

 


 

DENNIS MARRIOTT 

 

A medium-paced left-armer, Dennis Marriott's career can be divided into two parts, on either side of the Thames. He started at Surrey where he showed promise in 1966 and 1967 when he was in and out of the first team. In 1972, he appeared at Lord's, where Mike Brearley, his captain, described him as, "A talented and delightful part-time bowler, who bowled somewhat in the Derek Underwood mould.”

At the age of 72, Dennis’ health had been deteriorated rapidly after being diagnosed with diabetes, resulting in a partial leg amputation. The operation confined Dennis to a wheelchair, and meant that accessing any rooms upstairs and looking after himself proved impossible.

The Benevolent Fund has been able to give significant support to Dennis, by converting a downstairs room into an easily accessible in shower/wet room, and modifying doorways out onto the garden, allowing him to once again be in control of his life on a day-to-day basis.

 
  
 

 

 


 

Tom Graveney

 

An elegant batsman, Tom Graveney was among the leading players of his generation. 

Graveney was a regular Test cricketer throughout the 1950s and his batting was dominated by strong front foot strokes, but he had enough technique against the quick bowlers to open the England batting regularly in the early part of his career.

In 1964 he scored his hundredth 100 (the first player to do so since the Second World War) and in all, scored 47,793 runs, as well as being a useful wrist spinner.

Tom and his wife Jackie, now both post 70, were finding it increasingly difficult to get around, with climbing the stairs at home becoming a major problem. The Benevolent Fund helped by paying for a stairlift, taking the stress and strain out of getting around their home. 

 

 
  
 

 

 


 

GARY SCOTT

 

Gary Scott made his Durham debut in 2001 aged 17, becoming Durham's youngest ever first-class player. His chances in the first team were few and far between, largely down to ongoing shoulder injuries. After 17 championships, 14 one-day matches and 15 t20 matches, Gary did not feature in any form of the game, after Durham’s successful campaign of 2007. 

Gary’s repetitive shoulder injury, which prevented him from bowling, finally signalled the end of a county career. Despite his efforts to get back to full fitness, it wasn’t possible. However, he continued as a semi-pro, playing and coaching at local club level until the recurring shoulder problem resurfaced in 2011. After his fifth operation and the loss of his job whilst in the recovery stage, the Benevolent Fund was able to help with ongoing rehabilitation costs and financial support. Due to their support, Gary regained full fitness and helped Chester-le-Street CC to the national t20 finals at Edgbaston during the summer of 2012.

 

 
  
 

 


 

Josh Mierkalns

 

Former Nottinghamshire batsman Josh Mierkalns admits the PCA Benevolent Fund proved a lifeline as he recovered from major surgery. The 24-year-old's life was at risk when his colon was removed in July 08 after being rushed to hospital as result of a severe intestinal illness. While he is now well down the road to recovery, he requires at least one more operation before he can return to work or cricket. " I wasn't really aware of the PCA Benevolent Fund at all, so to be told that I was not only still a member of the PCA, but also had some financial assistance available was a fantastic boost."

 
 

 


 


Dominic Hewson

 

After battling with a debilitating heart problem since he was a teenager, Dominic Hewson underwent a complex operation which was paid for by the PCA Benevolent Fund. The 34-year-old suffers from persistent atrial fibrillation, a condition that can make his heart flip suddenly from normal rhythm to a very fast and erratic heart beat. Dominic said, "I was able, with the PCA help, to go ahead with the operation and now I'm problem free. I think the PCA is fantastic , I am un-insurable, its changed my life and been a brilliant help".

Dominic Hewson
 

 


 

Owen Parkin

 

Ex-Glamorgan cricketer Owen Parkin's daughter Rosie is another who has been helped by the PCA Benevolent Fund. Rosie was born with only one lung and her heart on the wrong side, has spent years in and out of hospitals and has undergone numerous operations. She spent a lot of time on a ventilator and the PCA Benevolent Fund were able to support Rosie by providing portable equipment, which allowed her to spend time at home and ultimately helped to speed up her recovery. Now 5 years old, Rosie's progress has been remarkable and she has not been back in hospital for over 6 months.

Owen Parkin
  

 


 

Winston Davies

 

 Winston Davis, the former West Indies, Glamorgan and Northamptonshire bowler.

In 1992 a branch from a tree that he was cutting fell on Winston and consequently he has been paralysed from the chest down. A grant from the fund has paid for a specially adapted computer that Winston can operate himself, massively increasing his independence and more importantly, allowing him easy contact with friends and family back in the West Indies.

Winston Davies
 

 


 

Marcus Trescothick

 

 Marcus Trescothick has been talking about the illness that ended his England career and how the PCA Benevolent Fund helped him. Click here for The Guardian article.

Marcus Trescothick