The compiling of cricket records has occupied the leisure hours of many of the game’s enthusiasts for over a hundred years. Books containing cricket averages have been popular sellers since the 1850s and books of published cricket scores go back another fifty years. So it is perhaps surprising that it was not until 1973 that an association was founded to meet the needs of the many cricket enthusiasts who find that their appreciation of the game is enhanced by an awareness of the historical and statistical context in which it takes place.
The Association of Cricket Statisticians and Historians now has more than a thousand members all over the world. Each member receives the Association’s quarterly journal, comprising articles by Association members on a range of subjects relating to cricket’s history and statistics. Just as important, the Association acts as a focal point. Members meet others interested in the same area of research and can thus compare notes and resolve problems.
Although based in the UK, the ACS takes a global view of the game and supports research and publications dealing with cricket in the UK and overseas, from its earliest beginnings right up to the present day. Its scope includes not just Test and first-class cricket but all forms of the game: limited-overs, minor counties and second elevens, league and club cricket, women’s cricket to name but a few.
Three major annuals are issued each year by the Association – as a result of requests from members. The Year Book gives details of every current first-class and List A player in the world; the Second Eleven Annual gives similar particulars for every player appearing in the English Second XI Competition; and the newest addition is the Overseas First-Class Annual, giving the full score of every first-class match played outside England and Wales.
A major on-going project of the Association is the publication of the full scores of past first-class matches, the series having now reached the 1920s. So far as practical, the opportunity is being taken to check details against the original scorebooks, as opposed to simply copying old printed scores with their inherent errors.
The Association is also active in biographical research, and produces several publications each year in its critically-acclaimed ‘Lives in Cricket’ series. The Association sees it as one of its principal aims to allow members the opportunity to publish their work, whether it takes the form of a full-scale book or an article in the journal or on the website. Members’ proposals for publications are always welcomed, and grants are available for members wishing to undertake historical or statistical research.
The ACS gives members an opportunity to set up special interest groups, either face-to-face or on-line, to look at particular aspects of the game. Current special interest groups include early cricket (before 1800) and minor county cricket.
The ACS is widely respected for its work on the classification of major cricket. The game’s governing body, the International Cricket Council (ICC), regularly consults the ACS on issues of match status. The ACS has agreed a list, generally accepted as authoritative, classifying matches played before first-class status was officially defined by the ICC in 1947.
The Association welcomes applications for membership from anyone with an interest in the subject. There is no joining fee or qualification, simply an annual subscription of £20 sterling (UK) or £26 sterling (outside the UK). There is also a junior rate of £10 sterling for Under-18s. The Association is entirely non-profit making and all the money received from subscriptions and other activities goes towards the publication of our members’ work and the distribution of publications to our members.
For more details on the Association, you should write to, email, or telephone, the Secretary:
(Secretary – The Association of Cricket Statisticians and Historians),
The SSE SWALEC,
CF11 9XR, Wales.
Telephone: +44 (02920) 419383
or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
For membership enquiries, please contact the Membership Secretary, Huw Nathan, by sending an email to email@example.com