How did J. S. Wright came to export to India & Pakistan?

A Photo from Sanspareils Greenlands Factory, circa 1994

In 1974 J.S.Wright and Sons Ltd. began dealing with a cricket bat manufacturer named Symonds in Allahabad, India, a good brand back then whom used the Indian Rhino as their emblem. JSW then saw there could be an opening for selling English Cricket Bat Willow Clefts to India to other Companies which was already being done by one other supplier. Mr Carleton Wright & Mr. Nicholas Wright of JSW were very keen to expand.

But cricket bat makers who were importing EWC were quite happy with the product and the prices of JSW’s competitors. They were not ready to try or to shift to a new supplier, but eventually in 1979 the company called at Sareen Sports (SS), Meerut and gave them their first chance to try JSW’s willow clefts and Mr Narinder Sareen placed an order for 200 clefts. Thereafter JSW started getting a few small orders from Meerut & Jalandhar from many small companies. Sareen Sports are now one of the two largest customers and we deal with Jatin Sareen, Narinder’s son.

In early 1982, Mr. N. J. Wright came to India to survey the Indian bat market with a colleague in the UK who was already selling other Hardwoods to India so knew a little of how things worked. He visited door to door to every bat maker in Jalandhar, Meerut & Allahabad. The business gradually started growing and everybody concerned accepted this slow growth very patiently.

A Photo of Sanspareils Greenlands (SG) new factory in 2019, many changes!

Sanspareils Greenlands, the then leaders of the bat making industry in India and one of the largest cricket bat makers in the world today were introduced to JSW. Greenlands placed their first order for 500 clefts in the Grades 1 & 2 in early 1984. It can be estimated that they started making English Willow cricket bats in 1983 sometime and are now one of JSW’s largest customers.

While the Indian market was growing slowly the same was happening in Pakistan where JSW also started travelling, it was less complicated with fewer customers and the importing was very easy. CA Sports were the first customer in Pakistan to buy from JSW and they are today the largest customer there.

JSW kept on increasing the production every successive year anticipating a consequent increase in demand. Carleton & Nick were overseeing the planting of some 20,000 trees per annum in expectation of future demand By the year 1990 our market share of the English Willow market in India and Pakistan was very good, this has since fallen back with the introduction of more suppliers and we planted less trees for a few years but are now heading for 25,000 per annum and business is good in the Indian sub-continent.

J.S.Wright and Sons Ltd. have decided from 2015 to have a representative in India and have retained Anmol Gupta or Anmol Overseas Agencies as their representative from 1st January 2015, the business is too large to control directly from the UK anymore as Jeremy Ruggles who deals with sales also continues to do all the grading himself of every single blade produced to make certain there is consistency in the grading.

The Pakistan market continues to grow but not as fast as India, there are some new customers coming these days and if Pakistan was to get settled politically we would certainly see the same growth there as well. This business is still growing every year with the effort, dedication & experience of the whole team.

We feel proud that we have been supplying to all of the world renowned cricket bat makers in India for the last 30 years and a lot of this is entirely due to the travelling of Mr. Carleton Wright and Mr. Nick Wright in the early 1970’s and Mr. Jeremy Ruggles who has done the travelling since 1994.