Hawke's Bay cricket team

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Hawke's Bay cricket team
Hawke's Bay cricket.jpg

Black & White

Founded: 1882
Home ground: McLean Park

A Hawke's Bay cricket team, representing the Hawke's Bay region of New Zealand, played first-class cricket between 1883–84 and 1920–21, and competed in the Plunket Shield in the 1914-15 and 1920–21 seasons. The side has continued to appear in minor cricket and now competes in the Hawke Cup competition.

First-class history[edit]

In their first match at first-class level, against Wellington at the Basin Reserve in February 1884, Hawke's Bay were dismissed for just 32 in their second innings thanks to Joseph Firth's remarkable return of 8 for 13 from 13 four-ball overs.[1] In their next match, in 1884-85, they beat Wellington at Napier Recreation Ground by eight wickets.[2]

They lost their next three matches, all against Wellington, before trouncing Taranaki in two matches in 1891-92. In the first of these matches they dismissed Taranaki for 70 and 39 and the game was over in one day.[3] In the second match Hawke's Bay made 128 then dismissed Taranaki for 35 and 29.[4]

Hawke's Bay's matches remained low-scoring affairs. They did not reach a total of 200 until their 17th match in 1895-96, when they made 207 against Wellington in a drawn match.[5] Their first individual century came in 1897-98, when Hugh Lusk made 119 against Canterbury.[6] However, low scores were the norm in New Zealand at the time: in the eight first-class matches in 1897-98, only two centuries were scored, Lusk's and one by another Hawke's Bay batsman, Jack Wolstenholme.[7]

Hawke's Bay played 53 first-class matches, for 11 wins, 35 losses and seven draws. Twenty-four of those matches were against their neighbours, Wellington; Hawke's Bay won six of these and lost 14. They lost both their Plunket Shield matches (against Canterbury in 1914-15 and Auckland in 1920-21) by an innings.

Leading players[edit]

Hugh Lusk made three of Hawke's Bay's five centuries. He was by far Hawke's Bay's outstanding batsman: in 28 matches he scored 1395 runs at an average of 28.46,[8] and also took 40 wickets at 22.85,[9] as well as captaining the side in most of his matches and representing New Zealand.

The highest score for Hawke's Bay was 134 against Wellington in 1914-15 by Jack Board,[10] the English Test player who coached in Hawke's Bay for several seasons before World War I. The best innings bowling figures were 9 for 47 by Tom Dent against Wellington in 1900-01,[11] and the best match figures were 13 for 33 (7 for 20 and 6 for 13) by Charles Smith in the second match against Taranaki in 1891-92.

Since 1920-21[edit]

Hawke's Bay has won the Hawke Cup several times. Their first victory was in 1946-47, and their most recent in 2008-09. In the 1920s Hawke's Bay cricket had a rather memorable decade with the opportunity of facing many high-profile overseas teams including Australia, the M.C.C., New South Wales, Queensland and the Melbourne Cricket Club, all at Nelson Park.[12]

In 1950-51 the Central Districts cricket team began competing in the Plunket Shield. The Hawke's Bay Cricket Association is one of Central Districts' constituent associations.


Hawke's Bay played first-class matches on the following four grounds:

As well as Nelson Cricket Ground and Nelson Park, Hawke's Bay has also used the following grounds for Hawke Cup matches:

McLean Park has also been a regular home ground for Central Districts since 1951-52, and has been used as a Test ground since 1978-79. Nelson Park has also been used by Central Districts since 1985-86.


  1. ^ "Wellington v Hawke's Bay in 1883-84". CricketArchive. Retrieved 1 May 2009. 
  2. ^ "Hawke's Bay v Wellington in 1884-85". CricketArchive. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  3. ^ "Hawke's Bay v Taranaki in 1891-92". CricketArchive. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  4. ^ "Taranaki v Hawke's Bay in 1891-92". CricketArchive. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  5. ^ "Hawke's Bay v Wellington in 1895-96". CricketArchive. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  6. ^ "Hawke's Bay v Canterbury in 1897-98". CricketArchive. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  7. ^ "First-class Batting and Fielding in New Zealand for 1897-98". CricketArchive. Retrieved 11 January 2017. 
  8. ^ "The Home of CricketArchive". cricketarchive.com. Retrieved 30 September 2015. 
  9. ^ "The Home of CricketArchive". cricketarchive.com. Retrieved 30 September 2015. 
  10. ^ "Wellington v Hawke's Bay in 1914-15". CricketArchive. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  11. ^ "Hawke's Bay v Wellington in 1900-01". CricketArchive. Retrieved 27 November 2014. 
  12. ^ Campbell 1975, p. 123-4.
  13. ^ "First-class matches played by Hawke's Bay". CricketArchive. Retrieved 6 October 2015. 
  14. ^ "Other matches played by Hawke's Bay". CricketArchive. Retrieved 6 October 2015. 


  • Campbell, M.D.N. (1975). Story of Napier, 1874-1974. Napier: Martin Printing Company. 

External links[edit]