BCB Tribute To Johashen

Date Published: 
Kaieteur News
Kaieteur News Staff

Former National and Berbice swing bowler Vibert Johashen, who was born on August 17, 1948 in Demerara, passed away recently at age 68. He will be buried today in his adopted county Berbice.

Johashen played nine First-Class matches, four of those for Guyana and the other five for Berbice. Up until 1990 all four-day Inter-County finals were afforded First-Class status.

Even into his late 40s, Johashen played in Demerara’s second division competition for the Transport Sports Club and provided an education in swing bowling for the youngsters he played with at that level in last 1980s.

Yesterday the Berbice Cricket Board (BCB) issued a statement on his passing and his contribution to cricket.

Below is the full text of the BCB statement:

The Berbice Cricket Board, on behalf of its member clubs and cricket loving Berbicians, wish to express its deepest sorrow at the passing of a cricket stalwart, Vibert Johashen, a pacer who represented Berbice and Guyana at the first class level.

Vibert successfully played for Berbice from 1973 to 1978 and always a thorn in the sides of many established Demerara batsmen opening the bowling at different times with Keith Cameron and Leslaine Lambert.

In the Jones Cup final in 1977 at Bourda against Demerara, picked up 2 for 73 in the first innings when Keith Cameron took 7 for 60 and then in the second innings, he snared 5 for 43, including the wickets of Stephen Camacho, Stephen Bamfield and Andrew Lyght to bowl Berbice to a memorable 161 runs victory and the Cup.

He also played three four day matches for Guyana in 1977 and 1978 including one against the touring full strength Pakistan team and took 4 for 84 in their first innings including the scalps of the greats Majid Khan, Mudassar Nazar and Wasim Raja. He was also a capable lower order batsman who supported the established batsmen on many occasions.

At the first division level, Vibert played for Demerara Police and then remigrating to Berbice, Mental Hospital and Guymine where he gained employment. Although he was a “gentle giant” off the field, a real gentleman, the minute he crossed the boundary, he was a fierce competitor.

He was ruthless against his opponents and very uncompromising with his teammates particularly if they missed field or dropped catches off his bowling.

There is a famous story about an incident involving the then Police captain, the late William Jeffrey, Johashen and former Commissioner of Police Balram Raghubir, who was fielding at the time that is now cricket folklore.

Vibert will be fondly remembered for his exploits having made his mark in the annals of Berbice Cricket. Even after his cricketing days, he always showed a keen interest in Berbice Cricket even though he was residing in Demerara. The greatest tribute that can be paid to Vibert Johashen is if the youngsters of today can emulate his commitment and zeal for the game.

We will all miss you Vibert.