Cricket

Published on July 4th, 2017 | by Arunabha Sengupta

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25 wickets in a day Gloucestershire vs Glamorgan — A rare event today, but not as rare as you would think

The Cheltenham Cricket Festival is not what it once was.

Gloucestershire County Cricket Club played their first game at the College ground in 1872, and since then it has been the traditional Cricket Festival on the ground,  one of the oldest traditions of the game. However, in recent years, the charm and the fanfare associated with the event has been rather muted and lukewarm.

And against the dark gloom of overcast skies, the splendour of the uncertain game was etched out yet again this year, bringing an element of near impossibility into the action … uncertainty that characterises much of cricket.

It was Glamorgan who batted first on a seaming wicket under dense cloud cover and were bowled out for 117 in just 32.1 overs. But then Gloucestershire floundered against a truly international seam attack. South African Test player Merchant de Lange, the Australian-born Dutch cricketer Timm van der Gugten, alongside the captain Michael Hogan, who played his initial cricket for New South Wales … the three together restricted the hosts to 141 in 41.2 overs.

In the second innings, Nick Selman and Jacques Rudolph went after David Payne, the most successful Gloucestershire bowler of the first innings. But after a rousing start of 36 in just 8 overs, Glamorgan lost 5 wickets in the last 9, finishing with 59 for 5 at the end of the bizarre day’s cricket. They now lead by 35, and the match hangs on razor’s edge.

25 wickets in a day is really a rare occurrence in the current day.

However, it is by no means as rare as it may seem. In fact, First-Class cricket has seen instances of even all 40 wickets being lost in a day.

It is true that most of these occurrences took place way back in time. Indeed, for the first such instance of a 40-wicket day, we have to go back to Broad Halfpenny Down, Hambledon, the cradle of cricket. Hampshire scored 167, following which England were bowled out for 112; and when Hampshire piled 182 in the second innings, England surrendered to Richard Nyren and Noah Mann for just 88. It is a testimony to his quality that in such a low scoring game John Small, the first man to use a straight bat, got 65 in the first innings.

40 wickets were lost again in 1787 in a Middlesex-Essex game played on the Old Lord’s Ground in Marylebone. In the 19th century it happened four more times, three of them taking place in Cambridge. But 1827 was the last time one witnessed a full monty of wickets in one day.

In contrast, 39 wickets in a day do have a significantly modern instance.

The first such incident did take place in 1806, a match featuring famed cricketers of the era such as William Lambert, Silver Billy Beldham, Tom Walker and Lord Frederick Beauclerk.

However, the fourth and final instance happened as recently as in 1958. And if the weather gods had not allowed the few overs on the first day, in which Derbyshire scored 8 for the loss of 1 wicket, this game at the Ind Coope Ground in Burton-on-Trent could well have seen 40 on the second day. The second saw Derek Shackleton and Malcolm Heath destroy Derbyshire for 74. Following this Leslie Jackson and Harold Rhodes routed Hampshire for 23, the top score being 5  by Harry Barnard. Shackleton and Heath were at the Derbyshire men again, dismissing them for 107. Set 159 to win, Hampshire lost 7 for 46 to Jackson and Rhodes before Derby captain Donald Carr played spoilsport and introduced the first bowling change of the match. Promptly Derek Morgan, who had played the best innings in the game with 46, picked up the last three wickets to give Derbyshire a win by 103 runs.

In fact, the 1950s was a decade when such remarkable matches could be witnessed. Especially at The Oval, where wickets were tailored for the Jim Laker-Tony Lock spin twins. And they came into the fray only if Alec Bedser, Peter Loader and Stuart Surridge had not dismissed the opponents already. So, on Day 3 at The Oval, in the match against Gloucestershire in 1952, 38 wickets fell on the second day as Surrey emerged victorious by 135 runs. Laker and Lock had 8 wickets each.

In all 38 wickets have fallen just 3 times in a day’s play, and the one time in the 20th century was after a long, long gap, following the MCC-Cambridge game of 1848.

37 wickets in a day saw the first time such a feat happening outside England. At Basin Reserve, Wellington, the hosts and Auckland managed to lose that many wickets on the second day in 1873-74.

36 wickets have never been captured in the 20th or 21st centuries. But the last time it happened was in a match featuring an international side. At Aston Lower Grounds, Birmingham, 1884, Fred Spofforth ripped through an England XI, while Dick Barlow returned the compliments for the hosts. But when Spofforth took 7 more in the second innings to dismiss England XI for just 26, the Australians were left with just 33 to win. They lost six wickets for 28 before managing to knock off the runs.

35 wickets have fallen in a day on four occasions in First-Class cricket, only once in the 20th century when Warwickshire fell for 47 on their own turf against Alex Coxon and Bill Bowes in 1947.

The Victoria-Tasmania encounter of 1851-52 saw 34 wickets fall in a day, the highest number to topple in a day in Australia. That was in Emerald Hill, Melbourne. The same number of wickets fell on two separate days at Scarborough, when Yorkshire played Hampshire in 1946 and Middlesex in 1959.

With 33 wickets, we come to very modern times. After a wet first day at Bristol, 1981, Somerset was bowled out twice and Gloucestershire once, the latter conceding a first innings lead of 71. Chasing 252 to win, Gloucestershire ended the second day well placed on 150 for 3 in the second innings, Zaheer Abbas having stroked his way to an unbeaten 50. However, the following morning, Joel Garner ripped through the batting and the hosts were all out for 193.

A similar pattern followed the game between Nottinghamshire and Lancashire two years later at Trent Bridge. With rain allowing Notts to reach 17 without loss on the first day, the second saw the lush green wicket being used to magnificent us by Stephen Jefferies. The Notts were bowled out for 86. But Mike Hendricks and Eddie Hemmings struck back to restrict the Lancashire lead to 72. On an extended day the Nottinghamshire men piled up 294 in the second innings before reducing Lancashire to 27 for 3. Hemmings picked up all 7 the next day and Lancashire were routed for 65.

Among the 17 instances of 32 wickets a day, we find two that have encroached into the current century.

In December 2006, Shabbir Ahmed and Kashif Raza bowled Habib Bank out for 125, the last eight wickets falling on the second day after a curtailed first day’s play at National Bank Sports Complex, Karachi.  Azhar Mahmood and Shahid Afridi returned the favours, and Water and Power Development Authority were skittled for 72. Thereafter Mushtaq Ahmed picked up five wickets for Water and Power, but Afridi struck the ball hard and often to get 100 off 91 balls. By the end of the day, Habib Bank had picked up four second innings wickets and were in the driver’s seat. They won the following morning, by a whopping 178 runs.

At the De Beers Diamond Oval, Jandre Coetzee pulverised the Easterns and Hardus Viljoen did likewise to Griqualand, the first two innings of the match finishing by the 63rd over. After that Charl Pietersen struck with his left arm seamers to vanquish the Easterns again. The 39 run target was chased down by the Griqualand batsmen for the loss of 2 wickets. The match was over within a day.

A day of First-Class cricket has seen 31 wickets fall 25 times, 20 of them before the First World War. But then it happened twice in 1925, the College Ground in Cheltenham witnessing it’s first wicket-falling-festival against Nottinghamshire. Unfortunately for the hosts, Tom Richmond’s 14 wickets got better of the efforts of Charlie Parker and Percy Mills.

Curiously, in 1967 there was a double bill of 31 once again. In late June, in the picturesque County Ground New Road, Worcestershire, Fred Titmus, Brian Brain and the others picked up wickets by the bushel before Peter Parfitt’s unbeaten 162 led Middlesex to a 4-wicket victory. And then in Gillingham, in the second half of August, Don Shepherd and Jeff Jones struck for Glamorgan while Derek Underwood and Alan Brown did so for Kent. Finally the result was a thin 26-run win for the latter.

And finally, in April 2006, Pakistan International Airlines beat Karachi Harbour in a battle between air and sea that saw 31 wickets fall on Day 2.

There have been as many as 30 instances of 30 wickets falling in a day. 7 of them have taken place after the Second World War.

The most recent was at Luton in June 1995. Graham Gooch, Mark Waugh, Nasser Hussain, Ronnie Irani were among the batsmen dismissed for 127 against a seaming David Capel, following which Mark Illott picked up 9 for 19 to rout the Alan Lamb-led Northamptonshire for 46. It was Paul Taylor who did the damage to Essex second time around, and Northampton finished day one on one without loss, requiring 192 to win. After 8 wickets had been lost for 161 on the following day, Lamb and the Indian leg-spinner Anil Kumble batted with plenty of pluck to see the Northants through to a 2-wicket win.

In all 30 or more wickets have fallen during a single day of First-Class cricket on as many as 168 occasions.

So, 25 wickets in a day is rare… but not as rare as one may think.

The complete list of 30 or more wickets in a day is given below.

 

Wickets Match Venue Day of Match Year
40 Hampshire v England Broad Halfpenny Down, Hambledon 1 1779
40 Middlesex v Essex Lord’s Old Ground, Marylebone 1 1787
40 England v Surrey Lord’s Old Ground, Marylebone 1 1802
40 England v Surrey Lord’s Old Ground, Marylebone 1 1807
40 Cambridge Town Club v Cambridge University Parker’s Piece, Cambridge 1 1817
40 Cambridge University v Cambridge Town Club University Ground, Barnwell, Cambridge 1 1821
40 Cambridge Union Club v Cambridge University Parker’s Piece, Cambridge 1 1827
39 England v Surrey Lord’s Old Ground, Marylebone 1 1806
39 Surrey Club v Marylebone Cricket Club Kennington Oval, Kennington 2 1848
39 Oxford University v Marylebone Cricket Club Magdalen Ground, Oxford 2 1880
39 Derbyshire v Hampshire Ind Coope Ground, Burton-on-Trent 2 1958
38 Cambridge Town Club v Cambridge University Parker’s Piece, Cambridge 1 1819
38 Marylebone Cricket Club v Cambridge University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1848
38 Surrey v Gloucestershire Kennington Oval, Kennington 2 1952
37 Wellington v Auckland Basin Reserve, Wellington 2 1873/74
37 Surrey v Northamptonshire Kennington Oval, Kennington 3 1913
36 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1832
36 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1850
36 Tasmania v Victoria Launceston Cricket Club Ground, Launceston 1 1850/51
36 England XI v Australians Aston Lower Grounds, Birmingham 1 1884
35 Manchester v Yorkshire Moss Lane, Manchester 2 1844
35 Gentlemen v Players Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1853
35 Marylebone Cricket Club v Surrey Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1872
35 Warwickshire v Yorkshire Edgbaston, Birmingham 2 1947
34 Victoria v Tasmania Emerald Hill, Melbourne 1 1851/52
34 Marylebone Cricket Club v Lancashire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1886
34 South v North Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1887
34 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1898
34 Lancashire v Leicestershire Whitegate Park, Blackpool 3 1907
34 Yorkshire v Hampshire North Marine Road, Scarborough 2 1946
34 Yorkshire v Middlesex North Marine Road, Scarborough 2 1959
33 Cambridge Town Club v Cambridge University Parker’s Piece, Cambridge 1 1819
33 England v Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1847
33 Marylebone Cricket Club v Surrey Club Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1848
33 Gentlemen of England v Gentlemen of Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1849
33 Marylebone Cricket Club v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1850
33 England v Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 3 1860
33 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1863
33 Marylebone Cricket Club v Lancashire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1869
33 Gloucestershire v Northamptonshire Spa Ground, Gloucester 2 1907
33 Gloucestershire v Somerset Phoenix County Ground, Bristol 2 1981
33 Nottinghamshire v Lancashire Trent Bridge, Nottingham 2 1983
32 C Lennox’s XI v G Leycester’s XI Lord’s Old Ground, Marylebone 1 1802
32 Marylebone Cricket Club v England Lord’s Old Ground, Marylebone 1 1804
32 Marylebone Cricket Club v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1823
32 Cambridge University v Marylebone Cricket Club Parker’s Piece, Cambridge 1 1836
32 Cambridge University v Marylebone Cricket Club Parker’s Piece, Cambridge 1 1837
32 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1843
32 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1848
32 Marylebone Cricket Club v Nottinghamshire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1879
32 Otago v Auckland Caledonian Ground, Dunedin 1 1889/90
32 Lancashire v Somerset Old Trafford, Manchester 2 1892
32 Canterbury v Hawke’s Bay Lancaster Park, Christchurch 2 1893/94
32 Otago v Fiji Carisbrook, Dunedin 2 1894/95
32 Middlesex v Gentlemen of Philadelphia Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1908
32 Kent v Middlesex Mote Park, Maidstone 1 1913
32 Ireland v New Zealanders Observatory Lane, Rathmines, Dublin 1 1937
32 Habib Bank Limited v Water and Power Development Authority National Bank of Pakistan Sports Complex, Karachi 2 2006/07
32 Griqualand West v Easterns De Beers Diamond Oval, Kimberley 1 2010/11
31 Cambridge University v Marylebone Cricket Club FP Fenner’s Ground, Cambridge 2 1850
31 Marylebone Cricket Club v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1856
31 Oxford University v Cambridge University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1863
31 Otago v Canterbury South Dunedin Recreation Ground, Dunedin 1 1867/68
31 North of the Thames v South of the Thames Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1868
31 Cambridge University v Marylebone Cricket Club FP Fenner’s Ground, Cambridge 2 1870
31 Marylebone Cricket Club v Surrey Club Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1873
31 Kent v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1873
31 Marylebone Cricket Club v Australians Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1878
31 Marylebone Cricket Club v Hampshire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1881
31 North v Australians Old Trafford, Manchester 1 1886
31 Nelson v Wellington Victory Square, Nelson 1 1887/88
31 Marylebone Cricket Club v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1889
31 Wellington v Canterbury Basin Reserve, Wellington 1 1890/91
31 Middlesex v Yorkshire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1891
31 Yorkshire v Surrey Bramall Lane, Sheffield 1 1893
31 Auckland v New South Wales Auckland Domain, Auckland 2 1893/94
31 West Indies v RA Bennett’s XI Queen’s Park Oval, Port of Spain 2 1901/02
31 Marylebone Cricket Club v London County Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 3 1903
31 Lancashire v Nottinghamshire Aigburth, Liverpool 1 1906
31 Lancashire v Somerset Old Trafford, Manchester 2 1925
31 Gloucestershire v Nottinghamshire College Ground, Cheltenham 2 1925
31 Worcestershire v Middlesex County Ground, New Road, Worcester 2 1967
31 Kent v Glamorgan Garrison Ground 2, Gillingham 2 1967
31 Pakistan International Airlines v Karachi Harbour Multan Cricket Stadium, Multan 2 2005/06
30 Cambridge University v Cambridge Union Club University Ground, Barnwell, Cambridge 1 1827
30 England v The Bs Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1831
30 Cambridge Town Club v Cambridge University Parker’s Piece, Cambridge 1 1831
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1834
30 England v Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1834
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Cambridge University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1835
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1837
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1838
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Cambridge Town Club Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1840
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1840
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1844
30 Oxford University v Marylebone Cricket Club Magdalen Ground, Oxford 1 1845
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Cambridge University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1845
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Cambridge University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1847
30 Kent v England St Lawrence Ground, Canterbury 2 1848
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Cambridge University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1849
30 Gentlemen of England v Gentlemen of Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1850
30 South v North Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1850
30 Gentlemen of England v Gentlemen of Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1853
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Surrey Club Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1854
30 Tasmania v Victoria Lower Domain Ground, Hobart 1 1857/58
30 England v Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1858
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Lancashire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1867
30 Gentlemen v Players Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1867
30 Oxford University v Cambridge University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1869
30 Otago v Canterbury South Dunedin Recreation Ground, Dunedin 1 1869/70
30 Kent v Surrey Mote Park, Maidstone 1 1873
30 Wellington v Nelson Basin Reserve, Wellington 1 1873/74
30 South v North Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1874
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Oxford University Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1874
30 South v North Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1875
30 Players v Australians Kennington Oval, Kennington 2 1878
30 Yorkshire v Middlesex Fartown, Huddersfield 2 1879
30 Middlesex v Gloucestershire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1881
30 Nelson v Wellington Botanical Gardens, Nelson 1 1883/84
30 Yorkshire v Australians Park Avenue Cricket Ground, Bradford 1 1884
30 Wellington v Canterbury Basin Reserve, Wellington 1 1886/87
30 Yorkshire v Nottinghamshire Bramall Lane, Sheffield 1 1888
30 Lancashire v Surrey Old Trafford, Manchester 1 1888
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Nottinghamshire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1891
30 Hawke’s Bay v Taranaki Farndon Park, Napier 1 1891/92
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1892
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Sussex Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1894
30 Derbyshire v Lancashire County Ground, Derby 1 1894
30 Lancashire v Somerset Old Trafford, Manchester 2 1894
30 Yorkshire v Somerset Fartown, Huddersfield 1 1894
30 Yorkshire v Gloucestershire Headingley, Leeds 2 1894
30 Yorkshire v Leicestershire St George’s Road, Harrogate 2 1894
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Kent Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1896
30 Leicestershire v Surrey Grace Road, Leicester 1 1897
30 Taranaki v Canterbury Bayly Park, Hawera 1 1897/98
30 Hampshire v Yorkshire County Ground, Southampton 2 1898
30 Middlesex v Somerset Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1899
30 Middlesex v Gloucestershire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1899
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Derbyshire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1903
30 Kent v Hampshire Angel Ground, Tonbridge 1 1904
30 Kent v Surrey Foxgrove Road, Beckenham 2 1905
30 Leicestershire v Northamptonshire Aylestone Road, Leicester 1 1905
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Nottinghamshire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 2 1906
30 Marylebone Cricket Club v Leicestershire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1906
30 Transvaal v Orange Free State Old Wanderers Top Back Ground, Johannesburg 1 1906/07
30 Middlesex v Gloucestershire Lord’s Cricket Ground, St John’s Wood 1 1907
30 Derbyshire v Sussex County Ground, Derby 2 1907
30 Gloucestershire v Nottinghamshire Spa Ground, Gloucester 1 1909
30 Gloucestershire v Middlesex Ashley Down Ground, Bristol 1 1909
30 Nottinghamshire v Middlesex Trent Bridge, Nottingham 1 1910
30 Kent v Gloucestershire Crabble Athletic Ground, Dover 1 1912
30 Eastern Province v Orange Free State St George’s Park, Port Elizabeth 1 1912/13
30 Gentlemen of Philadelphia v Australians Merion Cricket Club Ground, Haverford 1 1913
30 Warwickshire v Kent Edgbaston, Birmingham 1 1914
30 Somerset v Hampshire Clarence Park, Weston-super-Mare 1 1919
30 Somerset v Surrey County Ground, Taunton 1 1919
30 Natal v Transvaal Kingsmead, Durban 1 1925/26
30 Freelooters v Nizam’s State Railway A Gymkhana Ground, Secunderabad 1 1931/32
30 Griqualand West v Orange Free State Willowmoore Park Main Oval, Benoni 1 1931/32
30 Madras v Mysore Madras Cricket Club Ground, Chepauk, Madras 1 1934/35
30 Northamptonshire v Gloucestershire Town Ground, Peterborough 1 1946
30 Derbyshire v Somerset Queen’s Park, Chesterfield 1 1947
30 Lancashire v Sussex Old Trafford, Manchester 1 1950
30 Somerset v Lancashire Recreation Ground, Bath 1 1953
30 Northamptonshire v Essex Town Ground, Peterborough 2 1956
30 Kent v Worcestershire The Nevill Ground, Tunbridge Wells 1 1960
30 Northamptonshire v Essex Wardown Park, Luton 1 1995

Source: ACS Cricket

 

 

 

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About the Author

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Arunabha Sengupta is a cricket historian and the author of Sherlock Holmes and the Birth of The Ashes. He tweets @senantix.



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