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From Lads to Lord's

The History of Cricket: 1771 – 1775 | The History of Cricket: 1781 – 1786 | Index

The History of Cricket: 1776 – 1780

1776 | 1777 | 1778 | 1779 | 1780
William Bedster | Sir Peter Burrell | Robert Clifford | John Freemantle | Richard Hosmer | Lamborn | Noah Mann | Mills (Surrey)
The Rimmingtons | Richard Stanford | Richard Aubrey Veck


the history

Thursday 4 July 1776 was the date of the Declaration of Independence in North America by the thirteen English colonies that formed the original United States of America: Connecticut, Delaware, Georgia, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina and Virginia. The Declaration of Independence was drawn up by representatives of the colonies in Philadelphia and adopted by the Continental Congress. Elsewhere, British troops evacuated Boston.

The first running of the St Leger Stakes took place at Doncaster racecourse in September. It is the oldest of the five classic horse races in Great Britain.

the cricket

According to Bowen, the earliest known scorecard templates were introduced. These were printed by T Pratt of Sevenoaks and soon came into general use.

A notice in the Leicester Journal of 17 August is the earliest known mention of cricket in Leicestershire.

GB18 records a notice re the Artillery Ground taken from the Morning Chronicle of Wednesday 28 August 1776. It reads: "The old wall of the Artillery Ground extending from the end of Chiswell Street to the Bunhill Burial Ground is about to be pulled down and a new one built farther back, and in front of the new road a row of houses is to be erected". See also 18 July 1761.

first-class matches

Kent v Hampshire

Moulsey Hurst, Molesey, Surrey

Wednesday, 5 – Friday, 7 June 1776

Hampshire won by 152 runs (HCC)

Hampshire 225 (T Brett 43, Mr T Davis 40, John Small 38, T Sueter 36; R May 3w) & 186 (John Small 44, T Taylor 41, J Aylward 30; R May 2w)
Kent 55 (W Barber 3w) & 204 (W Brazier 49, J Miller 39, T Pattenden 38; T Brett 4w)

Mr Ashley-Cooper reported that it was "played for 500 guineas". The venue is interesting as it was effectively neutral.

Kent v Hampshire

The Vine, Sevenoaks, Kent

Tuesday, 25 & Wednesday, 26 June 1776

Hampshire won by 75 runs (SB27)

Hampshire 241 (R Nyren 70, R Francis 47, John Small 45, T Taylor 42; Duke of Dorset 2w) & 84 (R Nyren 19; T White 2w)
Kent 173 (F Booker 41, W Brazier 34, W Bullen 29; T Brett 2w, R Nyren 2w) & 77 (W Bowra 20)

Mr Haygarth commented that, in other accounts, the Kent team is referred to as All-England but it is in fact a Kent team with Stevens and White of Surrey as given men.

Hampshire v Kent

Broadhalfpenny Down, near Hambledon, Hampshire

Tuesday, 2 – Thursday, 4 July 1776

Kent won by 4 wickets (SB28)

Hampshire 87 (G Leer 21; E Stevens 4w) & 221 (John Small 57, R Nyren 36; T White 4w, E Stevens 3w, John Wood 2w)
Kent 163 (W Brazier 36, Duke of Dorset 34, W Bowra 31; T Brett 3w, T Taylor 2w) & 146-6 (J Boorman 38*, T White 38; R Francis 4w)

Hampshire used a substitute batsman in the second innings with Mr T Davis replacing the injured Tom Brett, but he made only 0* so had little impact on the outcome.

Thursday 4 July 1776 was the date of the Declaration of Independence in North America.

Kent v Hampshire

The Vine, Sevenoaks, Kent

Monday, 15 – Wednesday, 17 July 1776

Hampshire won by 6 wickets (SB28)

Kent 154 (W Bowra 37, W Brazier 33, J Miller 27; R Nyren 2w) & 69 (J Miller 21; T Brett 2w, R Francis 2w)
Hampshire 130 (John Small 59*; John Wood 3w, E Stevens 2w) & 94-4 (G Leer 47*)

The layout of the scorecard in S&B suggests that John Small carried his bat, but it is not certain that he did open the innings.

Hampshire v All-England

Cheden Holt Common, near Hambledon, Hampshire

Monday, 22 – Wednesday, 24 July 1776

All-England won by 5 wickets (SB29)

Hampshire 88 (John Small 20; E Stevens 3w) & 113 (E Aburrow 25*; E Stevens 2w)
All-England 135 (W Bowra 36, W Yalden 31; T Brett 4w) & 67-5 (W Brazier 19*)

The venue is intriguing and Arthur Haygarth says he "cannot now say" if Holt Common was the usual Hambledon venue at Broadhalfpenny or another place.

Surrey v Hampshire

Laleham Burway Ground, near Chertsey, Surrey

Tuesday, 6 – Thursday, 8 August 1776

Surrey won by 1 wicket (GB18)

Hampshire 94 (J Aylward 29; E Stevens 4w, J T Wood 2w) & 176 (J Aylward 82*; J T Wood 2w)
Surrey 141 (T White 58; T Brett 3w) & 130-9 (T White 20, W Yalden 20; T Brett 2w, R Francis 2w)

James Aylward normally opened the innings so it is possible he carried his bat when making 82*. Despite his efforts, the more significant innings were by Thomas White with 58 and 20, his first innings score giving Surrey an important advantage when scoring was difficult.

The match must have had an exciting finish as the two not out batsmen both scored 19. Given the number of extras conceded too, Surrey must still have needed 30-plus when Lumpy and J T Wood began their last wicket partnership.

Hampshire v Surrey

Broadhalfpenny Down, Hambledon, Hampshire

Monday, 26 – Wednesday, 28 August 1776

Hampshire won by 198 runs (SB30)

Hampshire 273 (John Small 85, E Aburrow 49, R A Veck 46, J Aylward 45; E Stevens 3w) & 155 (J Aylward 59, John Small 35; E Stevens 3w, J T Wood 2w)
Surrey 82 (W Bowra 34; R Nyren 5w, R Francis 2w, S Colchin 2w) & 148 (J Edmeads 47, H Attfield 28; R Francis 2w)

Details were obtained from the Hampshire Chronicle, which reported "Attred" as a member of the Surrey team. Although Arthur Haygarth decided not to alter the spelling in S&B, there can be no doubt it was a typo and that the player was Henry Attfield.

Surrey had William Bowra, John Minshull and William Palmer as given men; Hampshire had Sam Colchin as a given man.

Thomas Quiddington and William Yalden apparently batted as substitutes in the Surrey second innings for Bowra and Minshull, who were both taken ill, but the scorecard did not state which for which. Yalden batted twice in the second innings.

This was the last known match played by the fine Coulsdon batsman William Palmer, about whom very little is known. Unfortunately, he ended his career with a pair.

significant matches

Coulsdon v Chertsey

Laleham Burway Ground, Chertsey, Surrey

Thursday, 5 September 1776

result unknown (DC)

To be played for 50 guineas a side.

London v Coulsdon

Artillery Ground, Bunhill Fields, Finsbury, London

Monday, 9 September 1776

result unknown (GB18)

To be played for £50 a side.

other matches

London v Brentford

Artillery Ground, Bunhill Fields, Finsbury, London

Monday, 19 August 1776

result unknown (GB18)

No details known.

richard aubrey veck

Richard Aubrey Veck (1756–1823) made his first-class debut in 1776. He came from Alresford in Hampshire. His full name is known but it is uncertain if he was called Richard or Aubrey. He was a successful batsman but was strangely overlooked by John Nyren in The Cricketers of my Time.

Veck was a regular Hampshire player for nine seasons until 1784, but then left the game at age 28, apparently because he set up a business interest at Bishops Waltham, where he died in 1823.


the history

News from America was not good. At the battle of Saratoga, a British army under General John Burgoyne surrendered to the American General Horatio Gates.


The 1777 season marked the known first-class debut of the enigmatic Lamborn, who was apparently the original unorthodox spinner.

He was a right-handed bowler with a low delivery and a "twist from off to leg"! He was "no batter". His nickname was The Little Farmer, which at least tells us what his occupation was, but then most people worked on the land in those pre-industrial times. It is possible he was called William but this may be a case of John Nyren compounding an error in that he had originally confused Lamborn with William Lambert (whose career was much later). Lamborn began with Surrey in 1777 but then played a number of games for Hampshire from 1780. He had a short career and few personal details are known. He is the subject of a famous anecdote in which he informed the Duke of Dorset re one near miss that: "It was tedious near your Grace!"

As for why Lamborn had a short career, he was probably transported to Australia where his daughter married someone called Warne!

the cricket

first-class matches

All-England v Hampshire

The Vine, Sevenoaks, Kent

Wednesday, 18 – Friday, 20 June 1777

Hampshire won by an innings and 168 runs (SB31)

All-England 166 (J Minshull 60*, T Pattenden 38, J Miller 27; T Brett 5w) & 69 (J Miller 23; T Brett 2w, R Nyren 2w, T Taylor 2w)
Hampshire 403 (J Aylward 167, T Sueter 46, R Nyren 37, John Small 33, T Taylor 32, R Francis 26; ? Wood 5w, E Stevens 3w, W Bullen 2w)

The highlight of this season was unquestionably the major innings of 167 by James Aylward which set a new record for the highest individual score. In a contemporary report, it is stated that: "Aylward went in at 5 o'clock on Wednesday afternoon, and was not out till after three on Friday". It is not known the length of the innings in terms of actual minutes or deliveries, but we can conclude that he batted during or through six sessions of play. The team total of 403 was a huge figure at the time; the second highest score in it was 46 by Tom Sueter, while five other batsmen scored 20-plus.

Aylward's innings completely overshadowed a notable effort by John Minshull in the All-England first innings. All-England had made 166 (Minshull 60*; Brett 5w) so Aylward beat their total by one. All-England collapsed in the second innings, probably in shock!

Aylward's record stood until 1820, when it was beaten by William Ward.

Aside from Aylward's exceptional score, the fascinating thing about this game is the fact that it is known who was bowling when the four catches were taken during the Hampshire innings! We even have the first known c & b by Wood, although it is not known which of John Wood or J T Wood was playing.

Also of interest is the report in John Nyren's book that this game was definitely played with three stumps in use. The third stump was originally allowed in 1775, as we have seen, but it is evident that teams did not always take advantage of it and many matches were played until 1780 in which the standard two stumps were used. It seems that the middle stump was universally adopted from 1780.

Hampshire v All-England

Broadhalfpenny Down, Hambledon, Hampshire

Monday, 7 – Thursday, 10 July 1777

All-England won by 25 runs (SB32)

All-England 60 (J Minshull 21; T Brett 4w, R Nyren 2w, R Francis 2w) & 207 (J Miller 65, W Yalden 44, F Booker 29, W Bullen 27; John Small 3w, T Brett 2w)
Hampshire 194 (R A Veck 54, R Francis 35, E Aburrow 25; T White 2w, Duke of Dorset 2w) & 45 (R Nyren 17; E Stevens 2w)

Back to Earth with a bump for James Aylward in the return game at Broadhalfpenny Down. He made only 16 and 0 as All-England recovered from a first innings deficit of 134 to win by 25 runs, Hampshire collapsing against Lumpy & Co. to be all out for 45 in the last innings.

July . The many Dorset v Mann fixtures of this period were essentially two Kent teams plus given men. Issues are always likely re the status of such games, but a clear majority of the players who took part were well enough known and there can be no doubt that these are major fixtures. Confusion often arises from the titles as the games were variously recorded as Maidstone v Kent or West Kent v East Kent. The Duke of Dorset generally used Sevenoaks in west Kent as his home venue (or Maidstone in the 1777 game); Sir Horace Mann's seat at Bourne was near Canterbury in east Kent.

Noah Mann

The famous Hambledon all-rounder Noah Mann made his first-class debut in 1777. He was born on 15 November 1756 at Northchapel, Sussex; and died tragically in December 1789 at the Half Moon Inn in Northchapel.

Noah Mann made 55 known first-class appearances from 1777 to 1789. He was a left-handed batsman and bowler. Said to be a powerful hitter as a batsman, he could also swing the ball and seems to have been a medium fast seamer. Mann was extremely athletic and Haygarth recounts how he "could cover an immense deal of ground, darting about like lightning". He could also perform extraordinary feats of agility on horseback, being able to pick up from the ground handkerchiefs while going at full speed.

His son, Noah, was afterwards engaged by MCC as a bowler for about sixteen years and he frequently appeared in MCC matches, mainly at Lord's.

Noah Mann's early death was through a bizarre accident. Haygarth recounts that: "he had been out shooting, and on his return to the Half Moon Inn, at Northchapel, wet and tired, he had a free carouse with his companions; refusing to go to bed, he persisted in sleep­ing all night in his chair in front of the fire. It was and still is the custom in that part of the country to heap together all the ashes on the hearth, for the purpose of keeping the fire in till the next day. During the night, having fallen asleep, the sparks ignited his clothes (or, as stated in Nyren's book, he fell upon the embers), and he was so severely burnt that he died the next day, not surviving twenty-four hours. His death took place at the early age of 33, in December, 1789". A verdict of accidental death was returned at the inquest.

All-England v Hampshire

Laleham Burway Ground, near Chertsey, Surrey

Tuesday, 22 – Saturday, 26 July 1777

Hampshire won by 30 runs (SB33)

Hampshire 115 (Duke of Dorset 37, John Small 28; Lamborn 3w) & 187 (G Leer 69; E Stevens 2w, ? Wood 2w)
All-England 143 (Earl of Tankerville 34, W Bowra 29; T Brett 4w, Duke of Dorset 2w) & W Bullen 36, W Yalden 32*; T Brett 4w, R Nyren 2w)

Another batting substitution. John Minshull hurt his knee so Henry Attfield batted in the second innings, but he was summarily bowled by Brett for nought. Brett took at least eight wickets as Hampshire won by 30 runs.

All-England v Hampshire

Guildford Bason, Guildford, Surrey

Monday, 18 – Wednesday, 20 August 1777

Hampshire won by 1 wicket (SB34)

All-England 50 (J Minshull 33*; R Nyren 4w, T Brett 3w) & 249 (J Miller 64, Earl of Tankerville 45, W Yalden 42; N Mann 3w)
Hampshire 133 (J Aylward 30; E Stevens 3w) & 167-9 (T Taylor 62, John Small 35; E Stevens 3w)

A tense finish at Guildford Bason as Hampshire beat All-England by 1 wicket. Needing 167 in the fourth innings, Hampshire owed much to a fine 62 by Tom Taylor but were still several runs short when the last pair, Tom Sueter and Richard Nyren came together. Sueter ended with 9* and Nyren with 4* to see them home. Incidentally, it is curious that one of these two should have been last man in, though Nyren "the General" was by now approaching the end of his career.

Hampshire v All-England

Broadhalfpenny Down, near Hambledon, Hampshire

Monday, 8 – Wednesday, 10 September 1777

All-England won by 54 runs (SB35)

All-England 146 (J Miller 51, W Bullen 46; T Brett 5w, N Mann 2w) & 187 (J Miller 39, J Edmeads 33*, W Bullen 31)
Hampshire 117 (J Aylward 29, R Francis 24; Lamborn 4w, E Stevens 2w) & 162 (J Aylward 47, John Small 30; S Colchin 3w, E Stevens 2w, Lamborn 2w)

This match was obtained from the Hampshire Chronicle, as it was not in the old book of scores published that contained matches from 1772 to 1784.

All-England v Hampshire

Artillery Ground, Bunhill Fields, Finsbury Square, London

Monday, 15 – Wednesday, 17 September 1777

Hampshire won by 131 runs (SB36)

Hampshire 187 (J Aylward 56, T Taylor 24; E Stevens 6w) & 212 (R A Veck 79, G Leer 33, J Aylward 28; S Colchin 2w)
All-England 151 (S Colchin 27; T Taylor 2w) & 117 (W Bedster 28; R Nyren 2w)

Arthur Haygarth obtained the score from the Hampshire Chronicle, which said: "The Hambledon Club, out of 10 great matches they have played this year, have won 7, lost 2, and received forfeit of 1".

significant matches

Chertsey v Coulsdon

The Vine, Sevenoaks, Kent

Monday, 9 & Tuesday, 10 June 1777

Chertsey won by 6 wickets (GB18)

Chertsey was led by the 4th Earl of Tankerville and Mr Stone; Coulsdon by the Duke of Dorset and Mr (later Sir) Peter Burrell. It seems to have been a grand social occasion that was reported by both the Lloyd's Evening Post and the St James Chronicle in the next couple of days.

Duke of Dorset's XI v Sir Horace Mann's XI


Wednesday, 16 – Friday, 18 July 1777

Sir Horace Mann's XI won by 1 wicket (KCM)

Duke of Dorset's XI 139 (T Pattenden 40, Rimmington 35; R May 3w) & 159 (Mr R Hosmer 46*, Rimmington 24; W Bullen 3w, R May 2w)
Sir Horace Mann's XI 87 (W Bowra 33; Mills 3w, J Boorman 2w) & 213-9 (W Bowra 67, J Miller 41, F Booker 27, Pennell 26; J Boorman 5w, Mills 2w)

The match was played "for 100 guineas". In CricketArchive, the match title is Maidstone v Kent. It could also be termed West Kent v East Kent.

The finish must have been exciting as at least four runs were needed when the last wicket partnership began. Sir Horace's team had been 52 runs down on first innings.

The curiously worded dismissal of "knock down wkt" which happened twice in the first innings has been taken to mean "hit wicket".

Duke of Dorset's XI v Sir Horace Mann's XI

The Old Park, Canterbury, Kent

Monday, 28 – Wednesday, 30 July 1777

Sir Horace Mann's XI won by 21 runs (KCM)

Sir Horace Mann's XI 116 (W Bullen 50; R Clifford 3w, J Boorman 2w) & 77 (F Booker 22*; J Boorman 3w)
Duke of Dorset's XI 66 (Oakley 3w, F Booker 2w) & 106 (Mr Stanford 28; W Bullen 3w)

The match was "played for 100 guineas". A notice beforehand implored spectators: "The company are particularly desired to bring no dogs, as they will be shot". Evidently there had been complaints about dogs running loose on the field in an earlier match at Bourne.

Mr Ashley-Cooper commented that "neither Scores and Biographies nor the books by W Epps or Bentley refers in any way whatever to the above match(es) between Kent and Maidstone (sic)". His source was presumably local newspapers or scorebooks. In CricketArchive, the match title is Kent v Maidstone. It could also be termed East Kent v West Kent.

William Bedster

The Artillery Ground game in September 1777 seems to have been the first match played by William Bedster, who was famously the Earl of Tankerville's butler. He had 62 known first-class appearances from 1777 to 1794.

He played mainly for Surrey till 1787 but he was frequently used as a "given man".

It is true that he was at one time Tankerville's butler at Mount Felix, Walton-on-Thames. He subsequently moved to Chelsea, where he was an innkeeper, and in his later career played mostly for Middlesex teams.

It is believed he died in 1805 but very little is known of his personal details.

Sir Peter Burrell

Sir Peter Burrell (1754–1820) was the third most influential member of the White Conduit Club and the early MCC, after Winchilsea and Lennox.

Burrell was a well known political figure and, apart from a couple of years in the early 1780s, was an MP from 1776 to 1796. The highlight of his career was his role as Deputy Grand Chamberlain in the famous trial of Warren Hastings. Hastings had been the first Governor-General of India from 1773 to 1786 but in 1787 he was impeached and subsequently tried for corruption; but was acquitted in 1795.

The playing career of Sir Peter Burrell extends to just 9 known first-class matches from 1785 to 1790. He played for Kent in a couple of matches although he was a Londoner by birth and his family seat was in Sussex.

He was a very useful batsman as indicated by his innings of 97 noted above.

Robert Clifford

The noted all-rounder Robert Clifford (1752–1811) of Bearsted made his known first-class debut in 1777. He was a Kent player who remained active until 1792.

He is believed to have bowled right arm slow but he was a left handed bat.

Richard Hosmer

Mr Richard Hosmer (1757–1820) was a resident of Mereworth in Kent.

He made 23 known appearances between 1777 and 1791 for various Kent and Gentlemen's XIs. He was a very useful batsman.

Mills (Surrey)

Mills was a noted player for the famous Chertsey Cricket Club and for Surrey. His dates of birth and death and his first name are unknown. He was principally a bowler but it is not known his pace or type. Mills' career probably began in the aftermath of the Seven Years War and he was certainly active until the 1781 season. He was recorded in 10 first-class matches after cricket's statistical record began in 1772 but by then it is believed he had already been playing for several seasons. Mills played for All-England teams as well as for Surrey.

The Rimmingtons

The Rimmingtons were three brothers who played first-class cricket for Essex, Kent and All-England teams between the 1777 and 1791 seasons. Personal details of them are unknown apart from their initials which were B, T and M. Their known appearances were 6, 5 and 1 respectively. But, as often happened at the time with other brothers and namesakes, when just one of them played only the surname was recorded and there are another 15 matches in which an unidentified Rimmington took part.

In 1780, B Rimmington was one of the most successful batsmen of the season, scoring 130 runs in only 3 matches.

It is believed the Rimmingtons were from Kent and they were originally involved with Kent cricket, but references to them from 1785 indicate that they joined the prominent Hornchurch Club and played for Essex.

richard stanford

Richard Stanford (born 21 June 1754 at East Peckham, Kent; died 16 July 1792) was a Kent cricketer who was one of the leading amateur batsmen of his time. He made 12 known first-class appearances between 1777 and 1787 for various Kent and All-England teams. He was a very useful batsman.


the history

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart (1756 – 1791) was flourishing at this time and wrote two very fine pieces in 1778: Symphonie Concertante (Winds) and Symphony No. 31 ("Paris").

There was a moment of high drama in the House of Lords on 11 May with the death of William Pitt the Elder, Earl of Chatham (1708 – 1778). Despite his long-term illness, he had returned to the House to speak against a peace on any terms motion. While speaking, he suddenly collapsed and died.

Other deaths were those of Rousseau (see 1762) and of Voltaire (1694 – 1778), the French writer who with Rousseau was mostly responsible for the development of the "revolutionary spirit" of the late 18th century. The philosophes also included Diderot and Montesquieu. They encouraged rationalist criticism of and resistance to the established powers of absolute monarchy, privileged nobility and the Roman Catholic Church. Voltaire in particular was a champion of religious toleration.

the cricket

first-class matches

All-England v Hampshire

The Vine, Sevenoaks, Kent

Monday, 29 – Tuesday, 30 June 1778

Hampshire won by 3 wickets (SB37)

All-England 88 (W Yalden 19; T Brett 2w, R Francis 2w, N Mann 2w) & 122 (J Miller 32, W Yalden 22; T Brett 2w, R Nyren 2w, N Mann 2w)
Hampshire 71 (R Francis 24; E Stevens 3w) & 140 (R A Veck 53*, R Nyren 38; Lamborn 2w)

Hampshire had William Bedster as a given man.

Hampshire v All-England

Itchin Stoke Down, near Alresford, Hampshire

Monday, 6 – Tuesday, 7 July 1778

All-England won by 45 runs (SB37)

All-England 143 (T White 33, J Minshull 31, ? Wood 26, W Yalden 24*; T Taylor 3w, N Mann 2w) & 130 (W Bedster 34, W Bowra 29; R Nyren 4w)
Hampshire 152 (John Small 49*, T Sueter 22; E Stevens 4w) & 76 (R Francis 23; E Stevens 3w, Lamborn 3w)

The venue is sometimes given as Stoke Down but it is correctly called Itchin Stoke Down. Another common misconception is that it is in the vicinity of Hambledon, but it is in fact near Alresford.

Chertsey v All-England

Laleham Burway Ground, near Chertsey, Surrey

Thursday, 10 – Friday, 11 September 1778

Chertsey won by an innings and 24 runs (GB18)

All-England 65 (Boltwood 27; E Stevens 2w, Lamborn 2w) & 89 (J Miller 29; Lamborn 6w, E Stevens 2w)
Chertsey 178 (W Yalden 49, E Stevens 24*, H Attfield 24; Polden 4w, W Bullen 2w)

This is one of those games where the status is questionable because of the use of a club name in the title. In real terms, Chertsey should be viewed as 4th Earl of Tankerville's XI. The All-England XI was undoubtedly weaker than normal with four unknown players Boltwood, Mansfield, Polden and Irons, though two of these at least performed with credit in the game.

Hampshire v Surrey

Broadhalfpenny Down, Hambledon, Hampshire

Thursday, 24 – Friday, 25 September 1778

Hampshire won by 4 wickets (ACS)

Surrey 115 (W Bedster 63, T White 28; R Nyren 2w, R Francis 2w) & 165 (J Miller 59, E Stevens 21, W Yalden 20, Mills 20; R Nyren 4w, N Mann 2w)
Hampshire 135 (N Mann 31, R Francis 19; E Stevens 4w) & 149-6 (T Sueter 49, R A Veck 46; E Stevens 3w)

The stake (£1100) and team totals of this match had been known for a long time with Ashley-Cooper having recorded them but the match scorecard was finally discovered in 2009 and published in the ACS Spring Journal 2010. The primary source is the General Advertiser dated 1 October 1778.

As well as his 7 known wickets in the match, Lumpy took 3 catches.

Surrey v Hampshire

Laleham Burway Ground, near Chertsey, Surrey

Tuesday, 6 – Thursday, 8 October 1778

Surrey won by 138 runs (SB38)

Surrey 238 (J Minshull 75, W Bedster 48, J Miller 42, W Yalden 24, T White 23*; T Brett 3w, T Taylor 2w) & 105 (J Miller 20; N Mann 3w, T Brett 2w)
Hampshire 116 (G Leer 31; Lamborn 6w, E Stevens 2w) & 89 (T Sueter 20; E Stevens 4w)

This game was played rather late in the year and it marks the end of a very notable career as it was the great Thomas Brett's swansong. Brett was still only 31 but it seems he have may have finished playing for employment reasons. He appears to have left the Hambledon area and moved to Portsmouth. Brett was described in Nyren's book as both the fastest and straightest of all the underarm bowlers.

The description of Brett as the "fastest and straightest" of all bowlers brings to mind Brian Statham, who was also noted for his accuracy despite bowling at high pace. Statham once expressed a philosophy that Brett might well have shared: "If they miss, I hit".

The statistical record from 1772 is proof of Brett's ability, bearing in mind that all his known wickets were bowled. It may be reasonable to assume that a third or more of catches taken by Hampshire fielders were off his bowling. His known wicket tally was 102 but bowling details in every game are either unknown or incomplete. We do know he took 29 wickets (i.e., bowled only) in just five matches in 1777; with catches, the true figure could well be 40-plus.

It is curious that, in his recorded matches, Brett never played for anyone except Hampshire whereas his contemporaries made appearances for numerous teams. Brett made 31 appearances for Hampshire in scorecarded games from 1772 to 1778.

Re the above game, a notice in the Morning Post on Monday, 5 October said: "We hear the noblemen and gentlemen of the Grand Cricket Club have established a fund for the purpose of rewarding such players as particularly distinguish themselves in the great county match: and it is said the hero of the capital match to be played tomorrow at Chertsey, between Hampshire and Surrey, will be entitled to the first prize". Could this have been the first Man of the Match?

significant matches

All-England v Chertsey

Artillery Ground, Bunhill Fields, Finsbury, London

Tuesday, 15 September 1778

result unknown (GB18)

This is the last time we have an important match played at the Artillery Ground. Hambledon was by now the predominant centre of English cricket and a lot of games were being played at other outlying venues such as Laleham Burway, Bishopsbourne Paddock and Sevenoaks Vine. London for the time being had been abandoned but the "noblemen and gentlemen" soon began to yearn for a return to the metropolis, as we shall see. Though not at the Artillery Ground, which had fallen into very bad repute.

The General Advertiser on the same day announced this match as a return to the game at Laleham Burway on 10 & 11 September. It was not reported afterwards.

other matches

Hambledon Club v Hambledon Parish

Itchin Stoke Down, near Alresford, Hampshire

Saturday, 30 May 1778

result unknown (GB18)

Pre-announced in the Hampshire Chronicle on Monday, 18 May as Hambledon Club v Hambledon Parish with Noah Mann.

London v Dartford

Artillery Ground, Bunhill Fields, Finsbury, London

Monday, 24 & Tuesday, 25 August 1778

result unknown (GB18)

This was pre-advertised as Hampshire v All-England but that fixture was postponed and London v Dartford was played instead. The postponement was recorded in the Daily Advertiser on Friday, 21 August.

The Morning Chronicle on Tuesday, 25 August reports that London scored over 120 and Dartford 84. Dartford at one point were apparently 0-5! The remainder of the match was to be played out the same day (Tuesday) but no subsequent report was found. The status of these two once great teams was by now dubious and this must be regarded as a minor match.


the history

14 February. Death of Captain James Cook on the Sandwich Islands (i.e., Hawaii).

the cricket

single wicket

Monday, 7 – Tuesday, 8 June . There was a "fives" game at the Artillery Ground in which the Duke of Dorset's team beat Sir Horace Mann's by 1 wicket. Dorset's team was James Aylward, William Brazier, Sam Colchin, Constantine Phillips and an unknown player called Polden. Mann's team was Joseph Miller, William Bedster, William Bullen, Robert Clifford and one of the May brothers. This was reported in the Morning Post next day (see GB18).

first-class matches

Hampshire v All-England

Itchin Stoke Down, near Alresford, Hampshire

Monday, 14 – Tuesday, 15 June 1779

Hampshire won by 6 wickets (SB39)

All-England 80 (W Bedster 23, J Miller 23; R Nyren 4w) & 179 (R Clifford 34, Mills 34, W Bedster 26, J Miller 25; R Nyren 2w)
Hampshire 137 (T Sueter 44, R A Veck 30; E Stevens 4w, Lamborn 3w) & 125-4 (R A Veck 39*, J Aylward 27, E Aburrow 25*; E Stevens 2w)

This is one of the matches that Mr Haygarth reports as having "another account" which records different scores.

All-England v Hampshire

The Vine, Sevenoaks, Kent

Wednesday, 23 – Saturday, 26 June 1779

Hampshire won by an innings and 89 runs (SB40)

All-England 56 (W Bedster 22, E Stevens 21*; R Nyren 3w, N Mann 3w) & 87 (W Bedster 37; N Mann 3w)
Hampshire 232 (R A Veck 79, N Mann 56; Lamborn 5w, W Bullen 2w)

The scorecard as laid out in S&B shows that Veck and Mann batted at nos 5 and 6 in the order, which would suggest a high partnership between them, but the batting order is not certain.

Surrey v Kent

Laleham Burway Ground, near Chertsey, Surrey

Monday, 9 – Wednesday, 11 August 1779

Kent won by 5 wickets (SB41)

Surrey 123 (J Minshull 40, W Yalden 27; J Boorman 3w) & 108 (H Attfield 25; W Bullen 3w)
Kent 141 (R A Veck 55, J Miller 25; E Stevens 3w, Lamborn 3w) & 91-5 (J Miller 25; Lamborn 2w)

R A Veck, who had probably his best season in 1779, played for Kent as a given man and his innings won the match for them.

Hampshire v All-England

Broadhalfpenny Down, near Hambledon, Hampshire

Monday, 23 August 1779

Hampshire won 134 runs (SB42)

Hampshire 167 (John Small 66, N Mann 45) & 182 (G Leer 58, T Sueter 24, N Mann 23; Lamborn 4w, E Stevens 2w)
All-England 112 (J Aylward 51) & 88 (J Miller 37; R Nyren 3w, N Mann 3w)

No bowling or fielding details were found for the two first innings.

In S&B, Mr Haygarth writes: "Another account says this match was played at Chertsey. In the score Berwick and Bowra were not mentioned as playing as given men for Hambledon, but as they do so in the next match, of course they must be in this. Why Berwick is a given man cannot now be said, as his doings do not entitle him to such a position. How the two sides were got out in their two first innings was not inserted in the score book from whence it was copied".

All-England v Hampshire

Moulsey Hurst, Molesey, Surrey

Monday, 13 – Thursday, 16 September 1779

Hampshire won by 2 wickets (SB42)

All-England 91 (W Bullen 35, R Clifford 33; R Nyren 3w) & 242 (E Stevens 52, H Attfield 46, J Miller 34, J Minshull 34, W Yalden 25)
Hampshire 172 (T Taylor 80, N Mann 38; E Stevens 3w) & 162-8 (R A Veck 43, E Aburrow 35, R Nyren 23*)

In direct contrast with the previous match, no bowling or fielding details were found for the two second innings!

significant matches

Kent v Surrey

Bishopsbourne Paddock, Bourne, near Canterbury, Kent

Wednesday, 21 – Saturday, 24 July 1779

drawn (GB18)

Badly affected by rain, the game was abandoned and all bets were declared void. Surrey had scored 62 and Kent had replied with 83-8 when the rain intervened. Kent had two given men from Hampshire who were apparently R A Veck and James Aylward.

There was a return match on 9 August as recorded in S&B.

other matches

Berkshire Club v Hampshire & Berkshire

probably at Old Field, Bray, Berkshire

Monday, 12 July 1779

result unknown (GB18)

This must have been an early match arranged by the famous Oldfield Club which achieved prominence in the next decade. The opposition is described as "11 picked men out of Hampshire & Berks". Advertised in the Reading Mercury a week earlier.

Alresford v Berkshire

Odiham Down, near Odiham, Hampshire

? August 1779

result unknown (GB18)

GB18 records a notice in the Reading Mercury that "some time in August", there would be a match on Odiham Down between Alresford and Berkshire. It says that Alresford would have "some of the Hambledon Club" and Berkshire would be "with the Maidenhead Club".

Berkshire v Oxfordshire

Henley-on-Thames, Berkshire

Tuesday, 5 October 1779

result unknown (GB18)

One of the earliest references to cricket in Oxfordshire was in the Reading Mercury on Monday 4 October: "On Tues. Oct 5 at Henley, the County of Berks v the County of Oxford, for £25 a side". See GB18.


the history

The Battle of Cape St Vincent (off the coast of Portugal) took place on 16 January. Fought in moonlight, it was a victory for a British fleet under Admiral Sir George Rodney over a Spanish squadron under Don Juan de Lángara.

the cricket

Duke & Son of Penshurst made the first-ever six-seam cricket ball and it was presented to the Prince of Wales (i.e, the future King George IV).

Several games have been recorded between the Duke of Dorset and Sir Horace Mann, though the match titles vary as before. Two of the matches have surviving scorecards which are in S&B.

There were also three matches between Alresford and Odiham & Alton. The Hampshire players R A Veck and Thomas Taylor played for Alresford in these games. The Odiham & Alton teams included Noah Mann and players called Beldham and James Wells. Wells could have been either of the two brothers James and John; Beldham must have been George Beldham, elder brother of William Beldham who was still only 14 in 1780.

first-class matches

Duke of Dorset's XI v Sir Horace Mann's XI

The Vine, Sevenoaks, Kent

Tuesday, 27 – Wednesday, 28 June 1780

Sir Horace Mann's XI won by 7 wickets (SB43)

Duke of Dorset's XI 93 (W Bowra 33) & 92 (W Bullen 34; Berwick 3w)
Sir Horace Mann's XI 105 (J Aylward 47) & 81-3 (J Miller 24*)

This was John Minshull's last recorded match.

Sir Horace Mann's XI v Duke of Dorset's XI

Bishopsbourne Paddock, Bourne, near Canterbury, Kent

Monday, 21 – Wednesday, 23 August 1780

Duke of Dorset's XI won by 14 runs (SB44)

Duke of Dorset's XI 97 (Earl of Tankerville 30, W Bedster 23; Gibson 5w, R Clifford 4w) & 163 (W Pattenden 32, W Bullen 30, E Stevens 25, W Bedster 24; Gibson 3w, R Clifford 2w)
Sir Horace Mann's XI 149 (B Rimmington 62, Mr R Hosmer 36; E Stevens 2w) & 97 (W Yalden 22*; W Bedster 3w, E Stevens 2w)

The player known only as Gibson made his two recorded appearances in this match and the previous one. In this game, he was credited with 8 dismissals.

All-England v Hampshire

Bishopsbourne Paddock, Bourne, near Canterbury, Kent

Thursday, 31 August – Friday, 1 September 1780

All-England won by 165 runs (SB45)

All-England 197 (W Yalden 52, W Bowra 31, T Rimmington 25, R Clifford 25; R Nyren 3w) & 144 (J Miller 37, W Yalden 34, J Aylward 24; Lamborn 2w)
Hampshire 80 (John Small 22; R Clifford 4w) & 96 (E Aburrow 36, N Mann 33; R Clifford 3w, E Stevens 2w)

Yalden's two scores made the difference and Haygarth reports that he "got 12 runs in two following strokes, Bedster 7 and Lumpy 6". In those days, there were no set boundaries and even in the time of WG we read of batsmen, especially WG himself, "hitting into the country".

The match title recorded in S&B is Kent with Surrey Divided v Hambledon Club with Surrey Divided. In fact, only Attfield and Tankerville of Surrey played for Hampshire, while their opponents are in effect an All-England team. John Freemantle made his debut for Hampshire.

Hampshire v All-England

Itchin Stoke Down, near Alresford, Hampshire

Wednesday, 20 – Friday, 22 September 1780

All-England won by 51 runs (SB46)

All-England 179 (J Miller 50, R Clifford 33*, E Stevens 31, J Aylward 26, W Bedster 24; Lamborn 4w) & 101 (B Rimmington 38; R Nyren 4w)
Hampshire 169 (E Aburrow 42, T Sueter 36, N Mann 30; E Stevens 4w, R Clifford 2w) & 60 (R A Veck 23; E Stevens 6w)

With 10 wickets and a first innings knock of 31, there is no doubt that Lumpy was the man of this match!

other matches

Maidenhead v Chertsey

Priestwood Common, near Maidenhead, Berkshire

Tuesday, 8 August 1780

Maidenhead won by 5 runs (DC)

The Maidenhead v Chertsey game in DC was a single innings match. A handful of Maidenhead's players in this game were later recognised in major matches.

john freemantle

John Freemantle (born 1758, probably at Bishop Sutton, Hampshire; died 3 August 1831 at Alresford, Hampshire) played for the legendary Hambledon Club. He was the elder brother of the more famous Andrew Freemantle. He had only a short first-class career from the 1780 season until 1782, playing seven times for Hampshire. It is possible he gave up playing early due to injury. John Freemantle was primarily a bowler and in Scores & Biographies, it is said that he was "tolerably fast". He was a useful batsman but it is said that when fielding he "never flinched from the ball".

The History of Cricket: 1771 – 1775 | The History of Cricket: 1781 – 1786 | Index

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