Leicestershire County Cricket Club
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|Leicestershire County Cricket Club|
|One-day name:||Leicestershire Foxes|
|Second XI:||Leicestershire 2nd XI|
|Overseas player(s):||Ramnaresh Sarwan|
|Home ground:||Grace Road|
|FP Trophy wins:||0|
|Twenty20 Cup wins:||3|
Leicestershire County Cricket Club is one of the 18 major county clubs which make up the English and Welsh national cricket structure, representing the historic county of Leicestershire. It has also been representative of the county of Rutland.
Its limited overs team is called the Leicestershire Foxes. Their kit colours are red with black trim in the Clydesdale Bank 40 and black with red trim in the t20. The shirt sponsors are Oval Insurance Broking with Highcross Leicester (shopping centre) on the top reverse side of the shirt.
The club is based at Grace Road, Leicester and have also played home games at Aylestone Road in Leicester, at Hinckley, Loughborough, Melton Mowbray, Ashby-de-la-Zouch and in Coalville inside the traditional county boundaries; and at Uppingham and Oakham over the border in Rutland.
Leicestershire are in the second divisions of the County Championship and in group c of the Pro40 one day league. They recently finished bottom of the County Championship for the first time since the introduction of two divisions. Their best showing in recent years has been in the Twenty20 Cup with the Foxes winning the trophy three times in eight years.
First XI honours 
- County Championship (3) – 1975, 1996, 1998
- Sunday/National League (2) – 1974, 1977
- Twenty20 Cup (3) – 2004, 2006, 2011
- Benson & Hedges Cup (3) – 1972, 1975, 1985
Second XI honours 
+ 1 Bain Hogg Trophy – 2nd 11 one day competition – 1996
Earliest cricket 
Cricket may not have reached the county until well into the 18th century. A notice in the Leicester Journal dated 17 August 1776 is the earliest known mention of cricket in Leicestershire.
But it was only a few years after that before a Leicestershire and Rutland Cricket Club was taking part in important matches, mainly against Nottingham Cricket Club and Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC). This club was prominent from 1781 until the beginning of the 19th century.
19th century 
Little more is heard of Leicestershire cricket until the formation of the present club on 25 March 1879.
Essex CCC versus Leicestershire CCC at Leyton on 14, 15 & 16 May 1894 was the initial first-class match played by either club. In 1895, the County Championship was restructured into a 14-team competition with the introduction of Essex, Leicestershire and Warwickshire CCC.
Early and mid 20th century 
Leicestershire's first 70 years were largely spent in lower table mediocrity, with few notable exceptions. In 1953, the motivation of secretary-captain Charles Palmer lifted the side fleetingly to third place, but most of the rest of the 1950s was spent propping up the table, or thereabouts.
Start of improvement: The late 1950s and the 1960s 
Change came in the late 1950s with the recruitment of the charismatic Willie Watson at the end of a distinguished career with England and Yorkshire. Watson's run gathering sparked the home-grown Maurice Hallam into becoming one of England's best opening batsmen. In bowling, Leicestershire had an erratically successful group of seamers in Terry Spencer, Brian Boshier, John Cotton and Jack van Geloven, plus the spin of John Savage.
The 1970s and the first golden era 
Ray Illingworth, again from Yorkshire, instilled self-belief to the extent that the county took its first ever trophy in 1972, the Benson & Hedges Cup with Chris Balderstone man of the match. This was start of the first golden era as the first of five trophies in five years and included Leicestershire's first ever County Championship title in 1975. A couple of runners up spots were also thrown in.
The game when Leicestershire won their first ever County Championship, on 15 September 1975, marked something of a personal triumph for Chris Balderstone. Batting on 51 not out against Derbyshire at Chesterfield, after close of play he changed into his football kit to play for Doncaster Rovers in an evening match 30 miles away (a 1–1 draw with Brentford). Thus he is the only player to have played League Football and first class cricket on the same day. He then returned to Chesterfield to complete a century the following morning and take three wickets to wrap up the title. To add to that season's success for Leicestershire was a second Benson & Hedges victory.
The 1980s 
A runners up spot in the 1982 County Championship brought some respectability, but the decade's only first class silverware was in the 1985 Benson & Hedges Cup with Balderstone still on board making him the most successful trophy winner in the club's history with six.
Success in the late 1990s 
Leicestershire won the county championship in 1996, and again in 1998. This was an amazing achievement considering the resources of the club compared to other county teams. This Leicestershire side, led by Jack Birkenshaw and James Whitaker, used team spirit and togetherness to get the best out of a group of players who were either discarded from other counties or brought through the Leicestershire ranks.
This team did not have many stars, but Aftab Habib, Darren Maddy, Vince Wells, Jimmy Ormond, Alan Mullally and Chris Lewis all had chances for England. West Indian all-rounder Phil Simmons was also named as one of Wisden's Cricketers of the year in 1997 while playing for the club.
- Bath Grounds, Ashby-de-la-Zouch (1912–1964)
- Kirkby Road, Barwell (1946–1947)
- Fox and Goose Ground, Coalville (1913–1914)
- Town Ground, Coalville (1950)
- Snibston Colliery Ground, Coalville (1957–1982)
- Ashby Road, Hinckley (1911–1937)
- Coventry Road, Hinckley (1951–1964)
- Leicester Road, Hinckley (1981–1991)
- Aylestone Road, Leicester (1901–1962)
- Brush Ground, Loughborough (1953–1965)
- College Ground, Loughborough (1928–1929)
- Park Road, Loughborough (1913–1970)
- Egerton Park, Melton Mowbray (1946–1948)
Current squad 
- No. denotes the player's squad number, as worn on the back of their shirt.
- denotes players with international caps.
- county cap. denotes a player who has been awarded a
|No.||Name||Nat||Birth date||Batting Style||Bowling Style||Notes|
|5||Josh Cobb||England||17 August 1990||Right-handed||Right arm leg break||Captain (CB40/FLt20)|
|11||Matthew Boyce||England||13 August 1985||Left-handed||Right arm medium|
|14||Greg Smith||England||16 November 1988||Right-handed||Right arm leg break|
|53||Ramnaresh Sarwan||West Indies||23 June 1980||Right-handed||Right arm leg break||Overseas player and Captain|
|57||Shiv Thakor||England||22 October 1993||Right-handed||Right arm medium|
|12||Abdul Razzaq||Pakistan||2 December 1979||Right-handed||Right arm fast-medium||Overseas player (FLt20 only)|
|75||Shakib Al Hasan||Bangladesh||24 March 1987||Left-handed||Left arm Slow left-arm orthodox||Overseas player (FLt20 only)|
|10||Niall O'Brien||Ireland||8 November 1981||Left-handed||—|
|33||Ned Eckersley||England||9 August 1989||Right-handed||—|
|15||Claude Henderson*||South Africa||14 June 1972||Right-handed||Slow left-arm orthodox||Kolpak registration, spin bowling coach|
|16||Alex Wyatt||England||23 July 1990||Right-handed||Right arm medium-fast|
|17||Nathan Buck*||England||26 April 1991||Right-handed||Right arm medium-fast|
|20||James Sykes||England||26 April 1992||Left-handed||Slow left-arm orthodox|
|22||Jigar Naik||England||10 August 1984||Right-handed||Right arm off break|
|42||Rob Taylor||Scotland||21 December 1989||Left-handed||Left arm medium|
|77||Matthew Hoggard*||England||31 December 1976||Right-handed||Right arm fast-medium|
|Anthony Ireland*||England||30 August 1984||Right-handed||Right arm medium-fast|
|Robbie Williams||England||19 January 1987||Right-handed||Right arm medium-fast|
Former captains 
International players 
Most first-class runs for Leicestershire
Most first-class wickets for Leicestershire
Most first team winners medal for Leicestershire
- J. C. Balderstone – 6
- Highest team total: 701-4d vs Worcestershire at New Road, Worcester in 1906.
- Highest home team total: 638-8d vs Worcestershire at Grace Road in 1996.
- Lowest team total: 25 vs Kent at Leicester in 1912
- Highest total against: 761-6d by Essex Chelmsford 1990
- Lowest total against: 24 by Glamorgan Leicester 1971
- Most runs: 30143 by George Berry
- Highest individual score: 309* by HD Ackerman vs Glamorgan at Sophia Gardens in 2006.
- Highest home individual score: 262 by Brad Hodge vs Durham at Grace Road in 2004.
- Highest partnership: 436* by Darren Maddy & Brad Hodge vs Loughborough UCCE at Grace Road in 2003.
Best partnership for each wicket (county championship)
- 1st – 390 B.Dudleston and J.F.Steele v Derbyshire Leicester 1979
- 2nd – 289* J.C.Balderstone and D.I.Gower v Essex Leicester 1981
- 3rd – 316* W.Watson and A.Wharton v Somerset Taunton 1961
- 4th – 290* P.Willey and T.J.Boon v Warwickshire Leicester 1984
- 5th – 322 B.F.Smith and P.V.Simmons v Nottinghamshire Worksop 1998
- 6th – 284 P.V.Simmons and P.A.Nixon v Durham Chester-le-Street 1996
- 7th – 219* J.D.R.Benson and P.Whitticase v Hampshire Bournemouth 1991
- 8th – 195 JWA Taylor and JKH Naik v Derbyshire Leicester 2009
- 9th – 160 R.T.Crawford and W.W.Odell v Worcestershire Leicester 1902
- 10th – 228 R.Illingworth and K.Higgs v Northamptonshire Leicester 1977
- Most first-class wickets: 2131 by Ewart Astill
- Most first-class wickets in a season: 170 by Jack Walsh in 1948
- Best bowling figures in an innings: 10–18 by George Geary in 1929 against Glamorgan at Ynysangharad Park, Pontypridd.
- Best bowling figures in a match: 16–96 by George Geary in the same match.
- Most dismissals in an innings: 7 by Neil Burns vs Somerset at Grace Road in 2001.
- Most dismissals in a match: 10 by Percy Corrall vs Sussex at Hove in 1936.
Sub Academy 
The Leicestershire Sub Academy is designed for young cricketers who have potential to play at the highest level. It is also called the EPP (Emerging Player Programme). Many players who are involved in this set up move on to the LCCC academy, where they will play matches against academies from other counties.
Further reading 
- H S Altham, A History of Cricket, Volume 1 (to 1914), George Allen & Unwin, 1962
- Derek Birley, A Social History of English Cricket, Aurum, 1999
- Rowland Bowen, Cricket: A History of its Growth and Development, Eyre & Spottiswoode, 1970
- Roy Webber, The Playfair Book of Cricket Records, Playfair Books, 1951
- Playfair Cricket Annual – various editions
- Wisden Cricketers Almanack – various editions
- Leicestershire County Cricket Club – Official Site
- The Meet – Fan's Site
- CricInfo Page
- Cricket Archive Page
- BBC Sport Page