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1737 English cricket season

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Start date  1737
1737 English cricket season
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The 1737 cricket season was the 140th in England since the earliest known definite reference to cricket in January 1597 (i.e., Old Style – 1598 New Style). Details have survived of seven important matches. Frederick, Prince of Wales, seems to have been the sport's main patron this year while Kent, who twice defeated a combined London & Surrey team, seem to have been the strongest county.


Important matches

The following matches are classified as important:

Single wicket

August. Two unnamed players, one from Wandsworth and one from Mitcham, described as "two of the most celebrated sportsmen in the game", played a match on Kennington Common. The Mitcham man was hit by the ball in his first innings and concussed for a time. He continued but was "beaten by a considerable number of notches".

Other events

May. There was a tragic incident in a local match at Newick in Sussex when a player called John Boots was killed after he collided with his partner whilst going for a run. Both men were knocked down but got up again, only for Mr Boots to drop down dead as he was running to his wicket. This was recorded in a number of sources. Mr McCann found a reference in the West Sussex Records Office which named Mr Boots and said he was buried on Tues 31 May at Chailey. Chailey and Newick are neighbouring parishes just to the north of Lewes in East Sussex.

June/July. Frederick, Prince of Wales and Sir William Gage wagered a considerable sum on a match in Hyde Park, London. This seems to have involved noblemen only and was not an important match.

Wednesday, 6 July. Stansted v Hertford is the earliest known match in Hertfordshire. Stansted won.

Thursday, 14 July. Another minor "aristocrats only" game Kew Green. The captains were the Prince of Wales and the 3rd Duke of Marlborough. The Prince of Wales XI won.

The General Evening Post on Tuesday, 2 August, announced a game at Kew Green to be played on Thursday, 4 August. Frederick, Prince of Wales was due to play and lead a team of noblemen against the London Cricket Club, but it was probably members of the London Club rather than its professional players, so it would have been another minor match. G. B. Buckley says it is doubtful if the match was ever played as Frederick's first child Princess Augusta (1737–1813) was born "on Aug. 3" (sic) and this occasioned "great rejoicings in London". The Prince provided beer for the populace but "one lot of it was too bad to drink". In fact, Augusta was born on Sunday, 31 July. She was the elder sister of George III and became Duchess of Brunswick-Wolfenbüttell. She was the mother of Princess Caroline of Brunswick who made the famously ill-fated marriage with the future George IV in 1795.

Friday, 12 August. Hertford v Brentwood played at Ware, Hertfordshire is the second known match in the county, only five weeks after the first. Brentwood won by 6 runs for a £200 prize.


  • earliest known match definitely played in Essex
  • earliest known matches played in Hertfordshire
  • Clubs and teams (all minor teams)

  • Brentwood
  • Hertford
  • Stansted
  • Players

  • John Boots
  • Charles Spencer, 3rd Duke of Marlborough
  • Venues

  • Ilford (unspecified venue)
  • Additional reading

  • Altham, H. S. (1962). A History of Cricket, Volume 1 (to 1914). George Allen & Unwin. 
  • Ashley-Cooper, F. S. (1880). Kent Cricket Matches 1719–1796. Gibbs & Sons. 
  • Birley, Derek (1999). A Social History of English Cricket. Aurum. 
  • Bowen, Rowland (1970). Cricket: A History of its Growth and Development. Eyre & Spottiswoode. 
  • Buckley, G. B. (1937). Fresh Light on pre-Victorian Cricket. Cotterell. 
  • Major, John (2007). More Than A Game. HarperCollins. 
  • Marshall, John (1961). The Duke who was Cricket. Muller. 
  • Underdown, David (2000). Start of Play. Allen Lane. 
  • References

    1737 English cricket season Wikipedia

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