A Final Farewell to Munro Charles, a Former National Cricketer and Footballer
Munro Charles, a former national cricketer and footballer, who graced the field of sports in the Forties and Fifties, passed away in England where he resided for many years, but regularly visited Dominica during the past few years. He was 90 years old. A former prison officer, he served in the Eastern Caribbean Regiment during the Second World War and was transferred to Egypt for some time where he saw action.
While in Egypt, he represented his regiment in football while in Egypt as he was a very competent footballer who represented Dominica on his return home after the war. But in cricket Munro was best known as an off-spinner of immense ability who was the man for the big occasion; he could always be called upon to remove a stubborn batsman, which he did successfully.
I remember him playing for Dominica in a tournament at the Botanic Garden in the late Forties in a team made up of D.K. Burton (Capt.) Mally Frampton, Ivan Shillingford, Stafford Shillingford, Bernard Cools-Latigue, Simon (Simo) Francis, Tony Brown, Sydner (Bobby) Pemberton, Louis (Polose) Delsol, Harry Augustus and Allan Guye as 12th man. One of my never-to-be-forgotten memories of him was during one of his great bowling spells, from my end as umpire, was after he'd bowled two consecutive maiden overs to a batsman who was bent on playing defensively at every ball. In the next over he bowled what could be described as a long- hop and the batsman took full advantage of that particular delivery and hit it for six. On his way back to his bowling mark he said to me, "I have him now". In fact he had him, as the batsman attempted a repeat of the same stroke and he was caught in the deep. That's the type of bowler Munro was.
He was from the Newtown area having resided on Cornwall Street. On his return from the army with comrades like Walter Norris, Vincent John, Joseph (Sa-Ca-Boy) Andrew they strengthened Dominica's national football team; all four toured Guadeloupe with the national team in 1950. It will never be forgotten that Munro was dropped from the Dominica team by his captain, Ivan Shillingford, on the morning of a tournament match when it was revealed that he had a late night out on the night preceding the start of the match. He was replaced by young Cecil Shillingford, who later became a prominent Dominican spinner who played for the Windward Islands later on. He too has passed away.
Those of us who knew Munro Charles are saddened at his passing and we shall all remember this great sporting figure. To his bereaved daughter and the rest of his family and sport friends, I extend sincere condolences to them.