Club Edition

Launched in the 1966/67 season the Club edition was probably the most popular set and was the mainstay of the cricket range. It’s deletion in 1981 signalled the approaching end of the whole game.

The set contained everything you needed to play but, unlike its football counterpart, only one complete set of players. The fielders, generally in light blue caps, took on the batsmen in red, but once the innings ended you had to imagine your teams swopping colours so that the second innings also featured blue capped fielders v red capped batters.

Some sets were produced with the colours alternated, but these are a lot less common. Early in production some also featured the small catching cup fielders more common in the Display version. I was lucky enough to stumble across a set of them with red caps in a second-hand toy shop a few years ago (image below). In fact it was seeing a set with such unfamiliar figures that rekindled my interest in the game, led me to dig my set out of the loft and start the collection detailed on the site.

The Club edition box design changed three times over its life, first with a switch of illustration when the original batsman cutting the ball was replaced with a batter setting off for a run. (Strangely the original was retained on the Test version). The illustration was then replaced by a more common design with the Test version.

The final versions produced featured more neutral white capped players (see the middle set below), but still only one colour of caps for batsmen. Some also featured nylon rather than baize pitches.

The set retailed for approximately 75% of the Test version, and this may have contributed to the decision to discontinue it in 1981. Forcing punters to buy the more expensive Test and Floodlighting versions did not prove a great decision by the then owners, and the range folded completely less than two years later.

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