The annual Jim Allen charity 20/20 cricket match will be held this year on 21 September 2013, at the Stretford Cricket Club, Lesley Road, Stretford, Manchester M32 9EE. The match which is in its third year is being put on by the Montserrat Manchester Action Group. The game starts at 1pm.
Keith Samuel, one of the organisers of the Manchester Montserrat Action Group says; "The match is a fitting tribute to Jim Charles Allen of Montserrat, who is widely regarded to be the best Batsman from the Leeward Islands who never played test cricket.
The annual match will feature a selected Montserratian team from London and its environs and a selected Montserratian team from the East and West Midlands and the North of England. The London team which is led by Trevor Semper includes former Montserrat national players, Gary Barzey, Mark Stephanie, David Tricksie Duberry, Omarie Allen, Owen Ezad Roach, and Kasey Weekes. The Team from the West and East Midlands and the North of England, will be led by former Montserrat, Leeward Islands, Yorkshire, and Northamptonshire fast bowler Lesroy Weekes. That team also is studded with former Montserrat national players in Lesroy Irish, Terrence Sally Markham, Aurel Kirnon, Lawrence Bushman Obrien, Olson Muraine,, and Devon Racka Willliams who is the son of Jim Allen.
Born in Harris Village, Montserrat, Jim Allen was the most exciting batman on display in the early 1970s in the Annual Leeward Island Cricket Tournament. Some of Allen's scores after he made his debut for Montserrat in 1970 were 148 vs St kitts in 1971, 67 vs Nevis in Nevis in 1971, 162 vs Antigua in Antigua, [ against Andy Roberts in 1972], 101 vs Antigua in 1973, [ against Andy Roberts], 111 vs Antigua in Antigua in 1974, 141 vs Antigua in 1975.
In regional cricket Allen was equally punishing, with 5 centuries, and 19 half centuries for the Combined Islands Team at an average of just less than 35. His 101 vs Barbados at the Kensington Oval against an attack comprising Joel Garner and Vanburn Holder in 1977 is said to be his finest. Even better than his 150 for the Combined Islands vs Guyana at Sturge Park in Montserrat in 1977. Montserratians will always remember his mastery of the cut and hook shots against Colin Croft who was then young with express pace in that particular innings. Jim Allen's highest score in regional cricket was 161 for the Combined Islands vs Jamaica in Grenada in 1979. Allen's best season was 1976/77, where he scored 559 first-class runs at 50.81, with a highest score of 150
Allen played World Series cricket under the Kerry Packer banner for the West Indies in Australia from 1977 /1978. Jim Allen also played League cricket in the Cheshire and Lancashire leagues for many years. At Werneth Cricket club and Hyde cricket club in particular where he played as a member of these teams his natural dashing style and aggressive cast of mind won him many supporters year after year. For many years Jim Allen was feared by bowlers in these leagues.
Following the end of World Series Cricket, Allen returned to the West Indies for the 1978/79 season where he scored his highest first-class score of 161. Allen was forced to retire from cricket in 1983 following an eye injury sustained during practice session at the Montserrat Secondary School. Upon his retirement, Allen had scored 3,067 first-class runs at an average of 34.07. He also took three wickets at 30.00 with his right arm medium pace and took 42 catches and one stumping. Jim Allen still lives in Montserrat.
According to Keith Samuel, the day will be a family fun day, with lots of foods and drinks, in addition to games for the kids. The Montserrat United Masquerades will also be in attendance. Admission. Adults '2.50. Kids '1.00. Kids under 5 years of age will be admitted free. A dance will follow the cricket match in the evening at Imani Centre, 3A Oxford Place, Rusholme M14 5GS.