|Established||Soon after 1751|
|Home venue|| Darnall cricket ground |
|Notable players||Tom Marsden|
The Sheffield Cricket Club was founded in the 18th century and soon began to play a key role in the development of cricket in northern England. It was the direct forerunner of Yorkshire County Cricket Club and some of the teams fielded by Sheffield were styled Yorkshire. Sheffield generally held first-class status, depending on the quality of their opponents, from 1827 to 1855.
Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of eleven players on a field at the centre of which is a 20-metre (22-yard) pitch with a wicket at each end, each comprising two bails balanced on three stumps. The batting side scores runs by striking the ball bowled at the wicket with the bat, while the bowling and fielding side tries to prevent this and dismiss each player. Means of dismissal include being bowled, when the ball hits the stumps and dislodges the bails, and by the fielding side catching the ball after it is hit by the bat, but before it hits the ground. When ten players have been dismissed, the innings ends and the teams swap roles. The game is adjudicated by two umpires, aided by a third umpire and match referee in international matches. They communicate with two off-field scorers who record the match's statistical information.
Yorkshire County Cricket Club is one of eighteen first-class county clubs within the domestic cricket structure of England and Wales. It represents the historic county of Yorkshire. The club's limited overs team is called the Yorkshire Vikings. Yorkshire teams formed by earlier organisations, essentially the old Sheffield Cricket Club, played top-class cricket from the 18th century and the county club has always held first-class status. Yorkshire have competed in the County Championship since the official start of the competition in 1890 and have played in every top-level domestic cricket competition in England.
First-class cricket is an official classification of the highest-standard international or domestic matches in the sport of cricket. A first-class match is of three or more days' scheduled duration between two sides of eleven players each and is officially adjudged to be worthy of the status by virtue of the standard of the competing teams. Matches must allow for the teams to play two innings each although, in practice, a team might play only one innings or none at all.
The earliest known references to cricket in Yorkshire are in 1751.These relate to local matches in Sheffield and to a game on or soon after Monday, 5 August at Stanwick, near Richmond, between the Duke of Cleveland’s XI and Earl of Northumberland’s XI (the same teams had earlier played in Durham and this is Durham's earliest cricket reference).
Sheffield is a city and metropolitan borough in South Yorkshire, England. Historically part of the West Riding of Yorkshire, its name derives from the River Sheaf, which runs through the city. With some of its southern suburbs annexed from Derbyshire, the city has grown from its largely industrial roots to encompass a wider economic base. The population of the City of Sheffield is 582,506 (mid-2018 est.) and it is one of the eight largest regional English cities that make up the Core Cities Group. Sheffield is the third-largest English district by population. The metropolitan population of Sheffield is 1,569,000.
Richmond is a market town and civil parish in North Yorkshire, England and the administrative centre of the district of Richmondshire. Historically in the North Riding of Yorkshire, it is situated on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, and one of the park's tourist centres. Richmond is the most duplicated UK placename, with 56 occurrences worldwide.
Duke of Cleveland is a title that has been created twice, once in the Peerage of England and once in the Peerage of the United Kingdom. The dukedoms were named after Cleveland in northern England.
It is believed that Sheffield Cricket Club was founded soon after that date and it began to play matches against teams from other northern towns, including some inter-county fixtures.
Sheffield quickly became the main centre for cricket in Yorkshire. In September 1757, a match took place between Wirksworth and Sheffield at Brampton Moor, near Chesterfield. This is the earliest reference to cricket in Derbyshire.
Chesterfield is a large market town and borough in Derbyshire, England, 24 miles (39 km) north of Derby and 11 miles (18 km) south of Sheffield at the confluence of the rivers Rother and Hipper. Including Whittington, Brimington and Staveley it had a population of about 103,800 in 2011, making it the second largest town in Derbyshire. Archaeologists trace it to a soon-abandoned Roman fort of the 1st century AD. Later an Anglo-Saxon village developed. The name comes from the Old English ceaster and feld. It has a sizeable street market three days a week. The town sits on a coalfield, which was economically important until the 1980s, but little visual evidence of mining remains. The best-known landmark is the Church of St Mary and All Saints with its crooked spire, originally built in the 14th century.
Derbyshire is a county in the East Midlands of England. A substantial portion of the Peak District National Park lies within Derbyshire, containing the southern extremity of the Pennine range of hills which extend into the north of the county. The county contains part of the National Forest, and borders on Greater Manchester to the northwest, West Yorkshire to the north, South Yorkshire to the northeast, Nottinghamshire to the east, Leicestershire to the southeast, Staffordshire to the west and southwest and Cheshire also to the west. Kinder Scout, at 636 metres (2,087 ft), is the highest point in the county, whilst Trent Meadows, where the River Trent leaves Derbyshire, is its lowest point at 27 metres (89 ft). The River Derwent is the county's longest river at 66 miles (106 km), and runs roughly north to south through the county. In 2003 the Ordnance Survey placed Church Flatts Farm at Coton in the Elms as the furthest point from the sea in Great Britain.
William White's History & General Directory of the Borough of Sheffield (1833) has the following information: "In 1757 we find the Town Trustees attempting the abolition of brutal sports by paying 14s6d to the cricket players on Shrove Tuesday to entertain the populace and prevent the infamous practice of throwing at cocks". Mr White does not give the primary source from which he himself derived the information but it would likely be in parish or town records of some kind which may or may not still exist.
Shrove Tuesday is the day in February or March immediately preceding Ash Wednesday, which is celebrated in some countries by consuming pancakes. In others, especially those where it is called Mardi Gras or some translation thereof, this is a carnival day, and also the last day of "fat eating" or "gorging" before the fasting period of Lent.
On Tuesday, 7 July 1761, the Leeds Intelligencer (now the Yorkshire Post ) announced a game to be played at Chapeltown the following Thursday (9 July) and this is the first game known to have been played in the Leeds area.
Chapeltown is a suburb of north-east Leeds, in West Yorkshire, England.It is part of the Leeds City Council Ward of Chapel Allerton. It is approximately one mile north of Leeds city centre. Chapeltown was the scene of rioting, with disturbances in 1975, 1981 and 1987.
Leeds is a city in the United Kingdom, located in the county of West Yorkshire in Northern England, approximately 170 miles north of central London. Leeds has one of the most diverse economies of all the UK's main employment centres and has seen the fastest rate of private-sector jobs growth of any UK city. It also has the highest ratio of private to public sector jobs of all the UK's Core Cities, with 77% of its workforce working in the private sector. Leeds has the third-largest jobs total by local authority area, with 480,000 in employment and self-employment at the beginning of 2015. Leeds is ranked as a High Sufficiency level city by the Globalization and World Cities Research Network. Leeds is the cultural, financial and commercial heart of the West Yorkshire Urban Area. Leeds is served by four universities, and has the fourth largest student population in the country and the country's fourth largest urban economy.
On Thursday, 5 September 1765, the London Chronicle reported a "great match" on Monday, 26 August: Leeds v Sheffield at Chapeltown Moor, near Leeds. Sheffield won "with great difficulty". As this game was highly rated and was reported by a London newspaper, it shows that cricket was well established in Yorkshire only 14 years after it was first reported there.
The London Chronicle was an early family newspaper of Georgian London. It was a thrice-a-week evening paper, introduced in 1756, and contained world and national news, and coverage of artistic, literary, and theatrical events in the capital.
In August 1771, the first of many matches between Sheffield and Nottingham was held. This one took place on the Forest Racecourse at Nottingham and is the earliest known reference to cricket in Nottinghamshire and to any team from the county. The result of the game is unknown because "of a dispute having arisen by one of the Sheffield players being jostled" and the reports mention a Sheffield player called Osguthorpe who "kept in batting for several hours together".
This match may tentatively be regarded as the beginning of county-level cricket in the north of England. The Sheffield club was representative of its county in a similar fashion to Nottingham and (much later) Manchester. Although standards of play in the south were probably much higher than in the north at this time, the same scenario can be observed re the Hornchurch, Maidenhead, Chertsey, Dartford and Hambledon clubs in their respective counties.
In 1772, the Daily Messenger carried reports of a match in Sheffield on Monday, 1 June, in which Sheffield defeated Nottingham.
The Sheffield club continued to play occasional first-class matches, mainly against other northern clubs. In September 1833 occurred the first use of "Yorkshire" as the team name instead of "Sheffield". This was in the Yorkshire v Norfolk match at Hyde Park, Sheffield which Yorkshire won by 120 runs. The great Fuller Pilch was still playing for Norfolk. Yorkshire was by now finding star players of its own, especially the fast bowling all-rounder Tom Marsden.
Although the Sheffield and Manchester clubs had met previously, there was a significant development on 23, 24 & 25 July 1849 when the match was called Yorkshire versus Lancashire at Hyde Park. This was the first match to involve a Lancashire county team and also, therefore, the first "Roses Match". Yorkshire won by 5 wickets.
In the winter of 1854, the club agreed to build a new ground on land near to Bramall Lane which they were to lease from the Duke of Norfolk for ninety-nine years. The first game played at Bramall Lane on 30 April 1855 between "The Eleven" and "The Twenty-two" resulted in the senior team losing by an innings and 28 runs.
On 7 March 1861, a Match Fund Committee to run Yorkshire county matches was established in Sheffield, which had by then been the home of Yorkshire cricket for nearly 100 years. It was from this fund that Yorkshire County Cricket Club was founded two years later. This was an exact parallel with the foundation of Sussex County Cricket Club from a similar fund (1836–1839).
On 8 January 1863, the formation of Yorkshire County Cricket Club was agreed at a meeting of the Sheffield Match Fund Committee in the Adelphi Hotel, Sheffield. The new club was originally based at Bramall Lane and played its first inter-county match against Surrey at The Oval on 4, 5 & 6 June 1863. It was a rain-affected draw, evenly balanced. The foundation of Yorkshire effectively superseded Sheffield, which ceased to be a first-class team in its own right.
For the history of Yorkshire cricket since the foundation of the county club, see: Yorkshire County Cricket Club
The 1772 English cricket season was the 29th season following the earliest known codification of the Laws of Cricket and the first in which matches have been awarded retrospective first-class cricket status. Details have survived of three first-class matches, all featuring Hampshire sides playing England XIs.
The 1730 English cricket season was the 34th cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of 14 matches as well as four notable single wicket matches.
The 1732 English cricket season was the 36th cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of 12 matches.
The 1741 English cricket season was the 45th cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of nine significant matches, including the first known appearance of Slindon Cricket Club. The earliest known tie in an elevel-a-side match occurred.
The 1733 English cricket season was the 37th cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of 12 matches. Two local matches played in Hampshire are the earliest known to have been played in the county.
The 1734 English cricket season was the 38th cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of seven matches.
The 1735 English cricket season was the 39th cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of 10 top-class matches, nine played eleven-a-side and one single wicket match.
In English cricket since the first half of the 18th century, various ad hoc teams have been formed for short-term purposes which have been called England to play against, say, Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) or an individual county team. The key factor is that they were non-international and there is a significant difference between them and the official England cricket team which takes part in international fixtures. Conceptually, there is evidence of this sort of team being formed, or at least mooted, since the 1730s. They have always been "occasional elevens" but, nevertheless, have invariably been strong sides. A typical example would be a selection consisting of leading players drawn from several county teams.
Manchester Cricket Club was founded in 1816 and was a direct forerunner of Lancashire County Cricket Club which was founded in 1864. Manchester matches are classified with first-class cricket between 1844 to 1858, after which it was superseded by the county club.
Sussex county cricket teams have been traced back to the early 18th century but the county's involvement in cricket dates from much earlier times as it is widely believed, jointly with Kent and Surrey, to be the sport's birthplace. The most widely accepted theory about the origin of cricket is that it first developed in early medieval times, as a children's game, in the geographical areas of the North Downs, the South Downs and the Weald.
The 1736 English cricket season was the 40th cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of 17 top-class matches and two notable single wicket matches.
The 1738 English cricket season was the 42nd cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of seven matches.
The 1739 English cricket season was the 43rd cricket season since the earliest recorded eleven-aside match was played. Details have survived of seven matches.
The 1751 English cricket season was the eighth season following the earliest known codification of the Laws of Cricket. Details have survived of nine eleven-a-side matches between significant teams and the earliest known references to cricket Durham, Somerset, Warwickshire and Yorkshire occurred during the year.
The 1757 English cricket season was the 14th season following the earliest known codification of the Laws of Cricket. Details have survived of two eleven-a-side matches between significant teams.
The 1765 English cricket season was the 22nd season following the earliest known codification of the Laws of Cricket. Details have survived of five eleven-a-side matches between significant teams.
The 1781 English cricket season was the 10th in which matches have been awarded retrospective first-class cricket status. The scorecards of six first-class matches have survived. Broadhalfpenny Down in Hampshire was abandoned in favour of Windmill Down and the earliest known mention of cricket in Lancashire has been found during the season.
1800 was the 14th season of cricket in England since the foundation of Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC). It is one of the more difficult seasons to analyse because of several matches involving prominent town clubs like Rochester, Woolwich, Homerton, Richmond, Storrington, Montpelier and Thames Ditton.
Cricket must have reached Hertfordshire by the end of the 17th century. The earliest reference to cricket in the county is dated 1732 and is also the earliest reference to Essex as a county team. On Thursday, 6 July 1732, a team called Essex & Hertfordshire played London Cricket Club in a first-class match at Epping Forest "for £50 a side". The result is unknown.