Snow was the son of the Vicar of Bognor Regis , who – and this is one of those pieces of trivia known to all cricket fans – gave him the middle name Augustine. He was also a fairly rapid fast bowler who was almost constantly in the soup with the authorities for one reason or another. The index to his autobiography Cricket Rebel gives a flavour of it –
Snow, John –
accusations of not trying 41 116 et seq
clash with Pataudi (his county captain) 38
dropped by England (for disciplinary reasons) 34, 36, 44, 71, 76, 125, 136, 198
dropped by Sussex 116 et seq
grabbed by spectator 96, 106, 154
hitting batsmen (with the ball, usually) 19, 106, 111, 131, 155
incident with Boycott 177
knocks over Gavaskar 122 et seq 156
rebuked by Dexter (another county captain) 26-7
row with Clark (England tour manager) 93
row with Griffith (Sussex chairman) 124
rows with Rowan (umpire) 96 et seq
seam picking incident 95
troubles with Sussex 38, 61, 80, 85, 116, 127
warnings 112 et seq
As a result of all this, he was often held up by the Headmaster of my prep school as a bad example – particularly in respect of slacking and giving cheek – though I always rather admired him.
Wearing this vest – and, from the look of things, he is on the balcony of a cricket pavilion (possibly even Lord’s) – would once have been seen as the act of a cricket rebel. Now, of course, provided it had Vodaphone and Adidas written all over it, it would be the height of respectability, and quite possibly official dress for the England touring party for drinks with the British High Commissioner and suchlike events.
Snow also published two volumes of poetry – Contrasts (Fuller d’Arch Smith, 1971) and Moments and Thoughts (Kaye and Ward, 1973). His chance to have his poem read on the telly by JB (as mentioned below) was lost because he had refused his captain (R. Illingworth)’s request to bowl flat out (as opposed to fast-medium cutters) and had been dropped for the match that the broadcast was meant to co-incide with. A pity. As Snow put it – rather ungracefully I’m afraid – “The fee would have come in handy“.