South Somerset farmer’s son Vic Marks made his Somerset debut at the age of 20 in 1975, the county’s centenary year.
When the young all rounder, who went to Blundell’s School before moving onto Oxford where he won four blues, started playing for Somerset they had yet to lift a trophy. However, by the time he retired at the end of the 1989 season Vic had played his part in helping his beloved county to win five one-day trophies and was a key member of the Glory Year’s team.
Vic was probably one of the most underrated players on the circuit at the time and in his 275 first class matches for Somerset he scored almost 10,000 runs at an average of 30.53. During his career he hit four centuries, with a best of 134 against Worcestershire in 1984, and he passed 1000 first class runs twice. Vic also claimed 738 wickets with his off spin at a cost of just less than 33 runs per wicket and achieved his career best figures of eight for 17 against Lancashire at Bath in 1985. His best season was in 1984 when he scored 1262 runs and took 84 wickets in first class cricket.
There were also six Test Match appearances for England in addition to which Vic appeared in 34 One-Day Internationals for his country. Vic was a very useful player in limited overs cricket and played a major part in Somerset side that won five one day trophies in as many seasons in what was the most successful time in the Club’s history.
He played in both games over that September weekend in 1979, when Somerset beat Northants at Lord’s in the Gillette Cup Final on Saturday 8th before travelling to Trent Bridge to beat Nottinghamshire in the JPL to win the league title. Two trophies in as many days, it doesn’t come any better than that, especially after a wait of 104 years.
Vic was very much to the fore when the county beat Surrey in the Benson and Hedges Cup Final in 1981. During the match he bowled 11 overs, five of which were maidens and took two wickets for a miserly 24 runs.
Another impressive bowling display of two for 24 from 11 overs helped Somerset to victory over Nottinghamshire in the B&H Final in 1982. The following season all rounder Vic was at it again, hitting 29 vital runs in the NatWest Trophy Final against Kent and then taking three for 30 in his 10 overs to see Somerset to their fifth one-day triumph.
Vic captained Somerset for the last part of the 1988 season and also for 1989 before retiring to pursue a career as a cricketing journalist since when he has become a regular member of the BBC Test Match Special team.