1873 English cricket season
In the 1873 English cricket season, in only their fourth season as a first-class team, Gloucestershire was proclaimed joint Champion County by the media and went on to claim the still unofficial title four times in five seasons (1873-1874 & 1876-1877).
Player qualification rules came into force, with players having to decide at the start of a season whether they would play for the county of their birth or the county of residence. Before this, it was quite common for a player to play for two counties during the course of a single season, with by far the best-known case being star slow bowler James Southerton who played for his birth county Sussex when they had a match on and otherwise for Surrey. It is only since the residence qualifications were introduced that any quasi-official status can be ascribed to the oft-claimed Champion County title.
Leading batsmen (qualification 15 innings)
|1873 English season leading batsmen|
|Name||Team||Matches||Innings||Not outs||Runs||Highest score||Average||100s||50s|
|20||32||7||1805||192 not out||72.20||6||8|
|Fred Grace||Gloucestershire||15||22||3||593||165 not out||31.21||1||3|
Leading bowlers (qualification 800 balls)
|1873 English season leading bowlers|
|Name||Team||Balls bowled||Runs conceded||Wickets taken||Average||Best bowling||5 wickets
a An unofficial seasonal title sometimes proclaimed by consensus of media and historians prior to December 1889 when the official County Championship was constituted. Although there are ante-dated claims prior to 1873, when residence qualifications were introduced, it is only since that ruling that any quasi-official status can be ascribed.
b Includes the "County Cup" match at Lord’s between Kent and Sussex
c Includes a third Nottinghamshire v Yorkshire match organised privately by Nottinghamshire captain Richard Daft
d Hampshire, though regarded until 1885 as first-class, played no inter-county matches between 1868 and 1869 or 1871 and 1874
- John Lillywhite’s Cricketer's Companion (Green Lilly), Lillywhite, 1874
- James Lillywhite’s Cricketers' Annual (Red Lilly), Lillywhite, 1874
- John Wisden's Cricketers' Almanack, 1874