1871 English cricket season

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1871 English cricket season
Cricket formats major, including inter-county

The 1871 English cricket season was exceptionally memorable for a number of reasons. It saw the first-class debut of Derbyshire CCC, and the last first-class matches ever played by Cambridgeshire, who in the days of Bob Carpenter, the first Tom Hayward and George Tarrant had been one of the leading cricket counties.

More significantly, it saw WG Grace surpass his previous season’s record of 1,808 runs and his 1869 average of 57.39 by scoring 2,739 at the staggering average of 78.25 at a time when most pitches were still unrolled and very dangerous to batsmen - though the heavy roller was already producing major improvements to Lord’s and eliminating the fabled bottom-of-the-stump shooters.[1] These were not beaten until Arthur Shrewsbury averaged 78.71 in 1887 and K.S. Ranjitsinhji scored 2,780 runs in 1896.

Playing record (by county)[2][edit]

County Played Won Lost Drawn
Cambridgeshire 1 0 0 1
Derbyshire 2 1 1 0
Gloucestershire 4 2 1 1
Kent 6 2 3 1
Lancashire 6 4 2 0
Middlesex 2 1 0 1
Nottinghamshire 6 4 1 1
Surrey 13 0 9 4
Sussex 4 4 0 0
Yorkshire 6 2 3 1
[a]

Leading batsmen (qualification 15 innings)[edit]

1871 English season leading batsmen[3]
Name Team Matches Innings Not outs Runs Highest score Average 100s 50s
WG Grace Gloucestershire
MCC
25 39 4 2739 268 78.25 10 9
Richard Daft Nottinghamshire
All England Eleven
12 19 4 565 92 37.66 0 6
Robert Carpenter All England Eleven
Cambridgeshire
9 16 4 446 87 not out 37.16 0 3
Fred Grace Gloucestershire 14 24 4 716 98 35.80 0 6
Walter Hadow Oxford University
MCC
Middlesex
14 22 2 694 217 34.70 1 4

Leading bowlers (qualification 800 balls)[edit]

1871 English season leading bowlers[4]
Name Team Balls bowled Runs conceded Wickets taken Average Best bowling 5 wickets
in innings
10 wickets
in match
George Freeman Yorkshire 1060 330 29 11.37 7/30 2 0
Samuel Butler Oxford University 1136 446 37 12.05 10/38 4 2
Tom Emmett Yorkshire
All England Eleven
1502 625 50 12.50 8/31 5 3
E. M. Grace Gloucestershire 930 286 22 13.00 6/36 1 0
Edgar Willsher Kent 3025 935 70 13.35 7/46 7 2

Events[edit]

  • Cambridgeshire CCC played one match in the 1871 season and ceased to be a first-class county thereafter. This was blamed on the reluctance of the leading players in the county to appear for the Cambridgeshire side, preferring to play for the touring elevens.[5]
  • In Derbyshire’s opening season the club played its initial first-class match v. Lancashire at Old Trafford on 26 and 27 May.
  • Middlesex CCC, after being threatened with disbanding due to lack of a ground,[6] acquired the Lillie Bridge ground in West Brompton as a "home" venue, but played only one match there.
  • Prince's Cricket Ground was opened on former market gardens in Chelsea by two brothers dissatisfied with the condition of the Lord’s pitch[7] - ironically Lord’s improved markedly this very season.[1] Prince’s was a major ground in the middle 1870s but was built-on between 1877 and 1886.
  • 28 June: William Game, with 281 for Sherborne against Motcombe, hit the first double century in a public school game[8]
  • W. G. Grace caused a sensation by scoring 2,739 runs - this being the first time 2,000 was exceeded. He was to repeat the feat in 1876 and 1887, but no other player was to equal Grace until Andrew Stoddart and William Gunn did so in 1893. Grace's dominance is shown by comparing his figures for the season with the next best. Richard Daft had the next highest average among batsmen playing 10 innings or more, with 37.66, less than half Grace’s figure. Harry Jupp had the next highest runs aggregate, with 1068.
  • With ten centuries, Grace beat his 1869 record of six in one season. This was not equalled until Ranjitsinhji in 1896 and beaten by Ranji in 1900. No other batsman made more than a single hundred.
  • Surrey played thirteen county games without a single win, an ignominy not surpassed until Derbyshire in 1897 played sixteen winless games. Surrey were not to fail to win a single county game again until 2008.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Baily’s Magazine of Sports and Pastimes, Volume 20 (1871); p. 286
  2. ^ Wynne-Thomas, Peter; The Rigby A-Z of Cricket Records; p. 53 ISBN 072701868X
  3. ^ First Class Batting in England in 1871
  4. ^ First Class Bowling in England in 1871
  5. ^ First Class Cricket Matches 1871 - ACS - Nottingham Ed. Robert W Brooke
  6. ^ Wisden, John (editor); John Wisden’s Cricketers’ Almanac; Eighth Edition (1871); p. 121
  7. ^ Rae, Simon; W. G. Grace: A Life; p. 106 ISBN 0571195733
  8. ^ See Wisden, John (editor); John Wisden’s Cricketers’ Almanac; Eighth Edition (1871); pp. 148-149

Annual reviews[edit]

  • John Lillywhite's Cricketer's Companion (Green Lilly), Lillywhite, 1872
  • James Lillywhite's Cricketers' Annual (Red Lilly), Lillywhite, 1872
  • John Wisden's Cricketers' Almanack, 1872

Notes[edit]

a Hampshire, though regarded until 1885 as first-class, played no inter-county matches between 1868 and 1869 or 1871 and 1874

External links[edit]