This project aims to improve our knowledge of particularly memorable performances in lower levels of the game – instances of teams being bowled out for 0, or batsmen sharing a last-wicket stand of over 200, or a wicket-keeper making seven stumpings in an innings, and so on and so on.
It builds on the research carried out over many years by the late Ernest K Gross, who compiled extensive lists of such feats. The project aims to expand on Gross’s work in two ways:
- by locating scorecards – in as much detail as can now be traced – of the matches in which the most significant of these feats occurred, and
- by identifying further similar performances, from anywhere in the world, that either post-date Gross’s researches (he died in 1985), or else which simply passed him by.
Using local newspapers and other sources, it has been possible to track down at least some details of many of the matches of interest that are not currently recorded in the database of Cricket Archive. However, there is still much more that can be done. It is hoped that, by exploring additional sources, we can
- find better or fuller information on the matches for which we have at least some details, and
- find further matches in which performances occurred which equal, or even surpass, those recorded by Gross.
The project is open to all as one of the ACS’s Collaborative Projects. It was launched in May 2020, and thanks to contributions from many cricket-lovers around the world it has now reached a Third Edition, substantially enhanced and enlarged from the earlier versions.
Linked from the present page are
- a more detailed introduction to the project (please click here)
- a fully revised Record Index of all known matches – whether first-class or ‘minor’ – in which the most significant of the ‘major feats’ were recorded (click here)
- a set of nearly 500 scorecards, in various levels of detail or certainty, of minor matches not currently included in Cricket Archive but in which such feats are known, or thought, to have occurred. For ease of handling, these scorecards are divided chronologically into three files – one covering matches to 1906/07 (click here), one covering matches between 1907 and 1944 (click here), and one covering matches from 1945 to 2022/23 (click here).
- a new file giving notes on some ‘major feats’ recorded across an entire season or an entire career (click here)
- a new file of other ‘interesting’ scorecards that do not meet the criteria for inclusion in the main scorecard files (click here); and
- a new file of matches in which a reported ‘major feat’ is now known to be a fake, a fiction, or a fiddle (click here).
All cricket-lovers or historians are welcome to take part in this project in any way they can – from letting us know of a single match in which a feat took place that qualifies for appearance in these lists, right up to researching sources that might help to improve our knowledge of several matches in one go. Participants from outside the UK are particularly welcome to join in this venture – there are some significant gaps in our current knowledge that could, we hope, be filled from sources not currently available in the UK.
If you would like to share in the work towards a fourth edition of this project, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org
Keith Walmsley – June 2023