1727 English cricket season
|Cricket formats||major, including single wicket|
The 1727 English cricket season is notable for the Articles of Agreement which formalised the rules applicable to major cricket matches[fc 1][fc 2] promoted by the Duke of Richmond and Alan Brodrick, who were two of cricket's foremost patrons. Among the best of the known professional players were the all-rounder Thomas Waymark, who was apparently a groom employed by the Duke of Richmond; and Stephen Dingate, who may have been a barber.
List of matches
|date unknown||Duke of Richmond’s XI v Sir William Gage’s XI||venue unknown||result unknown|||
This match and the next one are listed by the source without comment from a brief reference in an earlier work, Pre-Victorian Sussex Cricket by H.F. & A.P. Squire (1951). The primary source is the Articles of Agreement drawn up for the Richmond-Brodrick matches (see below): "the Duke of Richmond to choose any Gamesters, who have played in either of His Grace's two last Matches with Sir William Gage". Although the Squires were probably correct, it is nevertheless an assumption that the "last two matches" were played earlier in the 1727 season.
|date unknown||Sir William Gage’s XI v Duke of Richmond’s XI||venue unknown||result unknown|||
Same comments as for previous match.
|? July||Mr Alan Brodrick’s XI v Duke of Richmond’s XI||possibly Peper Harow ?||result unknown|||
This match and the next one are notable for the surviving Articles of Agreement that were drawn up by the participants. The Articles state: "the first Match shall be played some day of this instant July in the county of Surry (sic)". Peper Harow is mentioned: "Mr. Brodrick to choose any Gamesters within three Miles of Pepperhara (sic), provided they actually lived there last Lady Day". Peper Harow is about four miles from Godalming and was the home of the Brodrick family. There is a view that it was the venue of the match in July.
|? August||Duke of Richmond’s XI v Mr Alan Brodrick’s XI||Sussex (venue to be chosen by the Duke of Richmond)||result unknown|||
In the Articles of Agreement: "the second match to be played in August next in the County of Sussex, the Place to be named by the Duke of Richmond".
Articles of Agreement
References to the games between the Duke of Richmond and Mr Brodrick mention that they drew up Articles of Agreement between them to determine the rules that must apply in their contests. This may be the first time that rules were formally agreed, although rules as such definitely existed. In early times, the rules would be agreed orally and subject to local variations. This syndrome was also evident in football until the FA was founded, especially re the question of handling the ball.
Unless the Richmond v. Brodrick matches can be seen as the equivalent of Sussex v. Surrey, there were no known inter-county matches in 1727. Kent, generally believed to have been the strongest county in the 1720s, are absent from the season's surviving records.
A match was played at Cranbrook, Kent on Monday, 29 May between "14 old men of that town". The oldest, Richard Shefe, was 84. The match was to celebrate Restoration Day, also known as Oak Apple Day.
There was a game at Warehorne Green, near Ashford, Kent on Monday, 5 June that was arranged by George Baker, Esq. who is described as the General Receiver; and Thomas Hodges, Esq. The teams were Warehorne v Hawkshurst and they played 12 a side.
- The term "major cricket" deserves some qualification. It is not limited to "first-class cricket" which is a misleading concept that is essentially statistical and may typically ignore the more important historical aspect of a match if statistical information is missing, as is invariably the case re matches played prior to 1772. From that season, scorecards began to be created habitually and there is a continuous and adequate, though incomplete, statistical record commencing in 1772. Major cricket in the Stuart and Hanoverian periods includes both single wicket and eleven-a-side games. Features of these matches include high stakes, large crowds and evidence that the teams are representative of several parishes, perhaps of whole counties. Except in rare instances, village cricket in the shape of a match played between two parish teams, would be classified as minor.
- Note that surviving match records to 1825 are incomplete and any statistical compilation of a player's career in that period is based on known data. Match scorecards were not always created, or have been lost, and the matches themselves were not always recorded in the press or other media. Scorecard data was not comprehensive: e.g., bowling analyses lacked balls bowled and runs conceded; bowlers were not credited with wickets when the batsman was caught or stumped; in many matches, the means of dismissal were omitted.
- McCann, pp. 6–7.
- Marshall, p. 52.
- Marshall, pp. 47–48.
- Marshall, pp. 47–48.
- Leach, John (2008). "Champion cricket teams since 1728". Stumpsite. Retrieved 28 February 2015.
- Maun, pp. 34–35.
- Buckley, p. 3.
- Buckley, G. B. (1935). Fresh Light on 18th Century Cricket. Cotterell.
- Marshall, John (1961). The Duke who was Cricket. Muller.
- Maun, Ian (2009). From Commons to Lord's, Volume One: 1700 to 1750. Roger Heavens. ISBN 978-1-900592-52-9.
- McCann, Tim (2004). Sussex Cricket in the Eighteenth Century. Sussex Record Society.
- ACS (1981). A Guide to Important Cricket Matches Played in the British Isles 1709 – 1863. Nottingham: ACS.
- Altham, H. S. (1962). A History of Cricket, Volume 1 (to 1914). George Allen & Unwin.
- Birley, Derek (1999). A Social History of English Cricket. Aurum.
- Bowen, Rowland (1970). Cricket: A History of its Growth and Development. Eyre & Spottiswoode.
- Buckley, G. B. (1937). Fresh Light on pre-Victorian Cricket. Cotterell.
- Major, John (2007). More Than A Game. HarperCollins.
- Underdown, David (2000). Start of Play. Allen Lane.
- Waghorn, H. T. (1906). The Dawn of Cricket. Electric Press.
- Wilson, Martin (2005). An Index to Waghorn. Bodyline.
- Leach, John (2008). "Classification of cricket matches from 1697 to 1825". Stumpsite.
- Leach, John (2007). "From Lads to Lord's – 1727". Stumpsite.
- "1727 match list". CricketArchive.