Lancashire County Cricket Club represents the historical county of Lancashire in English cricket. The club has been granted first-class status since its establishment around 1864. Lancashire’s home is Old Trafford Cricket Ground The team does will also play games at other grounds in the county. Lancashire was a founder member of the County Championship in 1890 and have been successful in winning the event nine times including the most recent in 2011. The team’s limited-overs team is called Lancashire Lightning.
Lancashire were widely recognised for being an Champion County for four times between 1879 and 1889. They took their first two County Championship titles in the 1897 and 1904 seasons. Between 1926 and 1934, they won the championship five times. In the most of the interwar period, Lancashire and their neighbours Yorkshire had the best two squads of England and the Roses Matches between them were usually the most memorable part of the domestic season. In 1950, Lancashire also shared the county title together with Surrey. The County Championship was restructured in 2000 with Lancashire as Division 1. They took home 2011’s the 2011 County Championship, a gap of 77 years since the last time they won an outright title in 1934.
In 1895, Archie MacLaren scored 424 in an innings for Lancashire which remains the highest score ever scored by an Englishman in first-class cricket. Johnny Briggs, his career ran from 1879 to 1900, was the first model player who scored 10,000 runs, and also take 1,000 wickets in the game for Lancashire. Ernest Tyldesley, younger brother of Johnny Tyldesley was the leading scorer for the club with 34,222 runs in 573 matches of Lancashire during 1909- 1936. Fast bowler Brian Statham took the club record of 1,816 wickets in 430 matches of the first class between 1950 between 1950 and 1968. England cricketer Cyril Washbrook became Lancashire’s first professional captain in 1954.
The Lancashire team from the late 1960s and the beginning of the 1970s, captained by Jack Bond and featuring the West Indian batsman Clive Lloyd proved successful in limited-overs cricket, winning the Sunday League in 1969 and 1970 and in 1970 and 1969, as well as the Gillette Cup four times between 1970 between 1970 and 1975. Lancashire also won the Benson and Hedges Cup in 1984, and three times between 1995 and 1990, and The Sunday League in 1989, 1998 and 1999. They won the Twenty20 Cup for the first time in 2015.
The earliest cricket played in Lancashire
The sport of cricket may not have made its way to Lancashire before in the late 18th century. As recommended by the Association of Cricket Statisticians (ACS) the first documented report of the sport played within the county was found in the Manchester Journal dated Saturday, 1 September 1781. It was a game of eleven players played the previous Monday, 27 August at Brinnington Moor. It was a match between a group composed of printers and a team representing Bredbury and Haughton. Haughton and Bredbury, who were the winners. As Bredbury was at the time part of Cheshire and the match was the first reference to that county as well.
In 1816 in 1816, in 1816, the Manchester Cricket Club was founded in 1816 and soon became the main north country rivals in the form of Nottingham Cricket Club and Sheffield Cricket Club. On the 23rd and 25th of July, 1849 both the Sheffield as well as Manchester clubs played each other at Hyde Park in Sheffield but the match was referred to as Yorkshire v Lancashire. This was the first time that had a team using Lancashire as its title and it is sometimes believed to have become the first Roses Match. Yorkshire was victorious by five wickets. Teams referred to as Yorkshire although based on Sheffield, the Sheffield club, were present since 1833. The Roses Match is one of cricket’s oldest and most famous rivalries. In 1857 the Manchester club moved from Old Trafford to Old Trafford, which has been the home of Lancashire cricket since that time.
The county club’s history
The 12th of January, 1864, Manchester Cricket Club was able to hold a meeting at the Queen’s Hotel in Manchester for the purpose of forming a club for the representation of the county. There were 13 local teams represented. Broughton, Longsight, Manchester and Western from the Manchester area; Huyton, Liverpool and Northern from Merseyside; Accrington, Ashton, Blackburn, Oldham, Whalley and Wigan from towns outside of the region. Lancashire County Cricket Club began its existence in formed with the intention of, it was said, “spreading a thorough knowledge and appreciation of the game throughout Lancashire”. The club was envisioned to play home matches alternately on Old Trafford, Aigburth, Preston, Blackburn and at “other places to help introduce good cricket throughout the county”.
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The county club’s first game was its first-ever official game at Warrington at Birkenhead Park, on Wednesday, 15 June 1864. However, it was not a First-Class match. The first inter-county game that was first-class was played in 1865 at Old Trafford against Middlesex; Lancashire defeated Middlesex by 62 roos, but Middlesex’s V. E. Walker took all ten wickets in the second innings of Lancashire.
The early Lancashire team was reliant on amateurs, which caused problems. Even though they were content to play in the prestigious Old Trafford, they were less willing to travel to away games. During the early 1870s, the team was dominated by A. N. Hornby’s bat. The standard of the team’s cricket was improved after the arrival from two professionals, Dick Barlow and Alex Watson. The impact on the team of Barlow as well as Hornby was so great that their batting tandem was immortalised in the poem Lord’s By Francis Thompson. This team also was enhanced thanks to A. G. Steel the amateur player who was second only to W. G. Grace as the best all-rounder. Johnny Briggs, a professional from Sutton-in-Ashfield and the only player to reach 10,000 runs and take 1,000 wickets for Lancashire as well as wicketkeeper Dick Pilling, who in 1891 was named by Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack as the second-best wicket-keeper of all time, behind Jack Blackham. As Lancashire’s reliability improved, also did their support. in 1878, 28,000 over just three nights watched Lancashire perform in Gloucestershire.
The first major win of the club’s history occurred in 1879. At that time, the majority of cricket journalists with the exception of Wisden – agreed to the idea that Lancashire along with Nottinghamshire were joint champions. Lancashire was named the county champion in 1881 and again shared this title along with Nottinghamshire in 1882.
Dick Barlow carried his bat for only 5 not out in Lancashire’s total of just 69 over two and a half hours in the match against Nottinghamshire on the treacherous, wet Trent Bridge pitch in July 1882. Barlow and his long-time opener pair Hornby are the opening batsmen immortalized in the famous poem by Francis Thompson. When the poem was published in 1884, Old Trafford became the second ground, after The Oval, to stage the first Test match in England. While it rained the first day, over 12,000 people watched the second, and the match that was played between England and Australia resulted in an unfinished draw.
In the 1880s, there was a controversy; Kent and Nottinghamshire objected to the bowling decisions that were performed by John Crossland and George Nash. Nottinghamshire even refused to play Lancashire. Though the 1880s saw an uneasy period with limited results for the team however, it was also the period when certain records for the club were established. In 1885, George Kemp (later 1st Baron Rochdale) scored Lancashire’s first century in a Roses Match. That same year Johnny Briggs and Dick Pilling created a record-setting first-class partnership in the ninth wicket in 173. This record remained in place until 1899 and has not been equalled by Lancashire. The club also shared its title as champions Surrey in 1889.