Worcestershire County Cricket Club

Infobox cricket team
county = Worcestershire County Cricket Club

oneday = Worcestershire Royals
coach = flagicon|England Steve Rhodes
captain = flagicon|England Vikram Solanki
overseas1 = flagicon|AUS Steve Magoffin (to July 10)
flagicon|West Indies Fidel Edwards (from July 10)
founded = 1865
ground = New Road
capacity =
fcdebutvs = Yorkshire
fcdebutyr = 1899
fcdebutvenue =
title1 = Championship
title1wins = 5
title2 = Pro40
title2wins = 4
title3 = FP Trophy
title3wins = 1
title4 = Twenty20 Cup
title4wins = 0
website = [http://www.wccc.co.uk WCCC]

Worcestershire County Cricket Club is one of the 18 major county clubs which make up the English domestic cricket structure, representing the historic county of Worcestershire. Its limited overs team is called the Worcestershire Royals, although unofficially the county is known by some fans as "the Pears".

The club is based at New Road, Worcester.


* County Championship (5) - 1964, 1965, 1974, 1988, 1989:"Division Two" (1) - 2003
* Gillette/NatWest/C&G/Friends Provident Trophy (1) - 1994
* Sunday/Pro 40 League (4) - 1971, 1987, 1988, 2007
* Twenty20 Cup (0) -
* Benson & Hedges Cup (1) - 1991

* Minor Counties Championship (3) - 1896, 1897, 1898; shared (1) - 1895

econd XI honours

* Second XI Championship (3) - 1962, 1963, 1982; shared (0) -
* Second XI Trophy (1) - 2004


Earliest cricket

Cricket must have reached Worcestershire by the 18th century but surprisingly the earliest reference to cricket in the county is as late as 1829.

A match on 28 August 1844 at Hartlebury Common between Worcestershire and Shropshire is the earliest known instance of a county team in Worcestershire. Two years later, XXII of Worcestershire played William Clarke's All-England Eleven at Powick Hams.

Origin of the club

Worcestershire CCC was formed on 4 March 1865 at the "Star Hotel" in Worcester.

The club owes much to Paul Foley who was from a family of iron masters in Stourbridge. He also owned an agricultural estate at Stoke Edith in Herefordshire. He became involved with the club in the 1880s and helped to establish the Minor Counties Championship which began in 1895. Worcestershire shared the inaugural title with Durham and Norfolk before winning outright in 1896, 1897 and 1898.

With this success behind it, the club applied for first-class status and entered the County Championship in 1899. Worcestershire CCC played its initial first-class match "versus" Yorkshire CCC on 4, 5 & 6 May 1899.

The first-class county

The inclusion of Worcestershire increased the County Championship to 15 teams. At first they performed moderately despite the superb batting of Tip Foster, who could rarely play after 1901. Weak bowling on perfect New Road pitches was responsible for this, but in 1907 when Tip Foster played regularly for three months their batting, considering the difficulty of the pitches, was among the finest of any county team. Their best performance that year was an innings of 567 on a somewhat difficult pitch against Fielder and Blythe of Kent CCC. After that year, however, the batting was never strong enough to make up for woefully weak bowling.

Worcestershire were so weak the club could not compete in the Championship in 1919, and their form in 1920 - when they lost "three successive games by an innings and over 200 runs" - was probably the worst of any county side. Their form, with one remarkable exception, was woeful up to the early thirties. Fred Root, one of the first exponents of leg theory bowling, took over 1,500 wickets for the county and was a Test standard player in an otherwise fourth-rate team. In Cyril Walters and the Nawab of Pataudi the team acquired its first class batsmen since the Fosters, but both had to give up the game after playing brilliantly in 1933 - when the bowling was briefly very weak.

The emergence of Dick Howorth and Reg Perks in the 1930s, however, was built up so well that by 1947 Worcestershire were sufficiently strong in bowling to be competitive at county level even if their batting was not adequate for high honours. Roly Jenkins, with 183 wickets in 1949, gave them briefly the best attack in county cricket, but they soon declined again and their form in the 1950s was indifferent at best.

Their first period of great success came in the 1960s under the Presidency of Sir George Dowty and the captaincy of Don Kenyon, when the county won two County Championships thanks to the achievements of such players as Norman Gifford, Tom Graveney, Jack Flavell, Len Coldwell and Basil D'Oliveira. The following decade, the New Zealander Glenn Turner was instrumental in Worcestershire's third championship. In the 1980s, the prodigious batting feats of Graeme Hick and the arrival of Ian Botham paved the way for two more county titles.

In 2006, Worcestershire won promotion to the first division of the Championship on the last day of the season by beating Northamptonshire while their rivals for second promotion spot, Essex, lost to Leicestershire. However, their 2007 season began badly, including an innings-and-260-run loss to Yorkshire, Worcestershire's worst innings defeat since 1934. [cite web | url=http://cricketarchive.co.uk/Archive/Records/England/Firstclass/Worcestershire/Team_Records/Largest_Defeat_by_Innings.html | title=Largest Margin of Innings Defeat | accessdate=2007-05-14 | publisher=CricketArchive] A flood-hit season inflicted serious financial damage, and on-field results in the Championship gave little cheer as Worcestershire were relegated. However, in the Pro40 First Division things were very different, and victory over Gloucestershire in mid-September brought the title to New Road, the county's first trophy since 1994. [cite web | url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/cricket/counties/6985924.stm | title=Worcestershire clinch Pro40 title | date=2007-09-13 | accessdate=2007-09-14 | publisher=BBC Sport]

2008 squad


County caps awarded

:"Note: Worcestershire no longer award traditional caps, instead awarding "colours" on a player's Championship debut."

Most first-class wickets for Worcestershire
Qualification - 1000 wickets [http://www.cricketarchive.com/Archive/Records/England/Firstclass/Worcestershire/Bowling_Records/Most_Career_Wickets.html]


*Highest team total: 701/6 declared v Surrey, Worcester, 2007
*Lowest team total: 24 v Yorkshire, Huddersfield, 1903
*Highest individual innings: 405* by Graeme Hick v Somerset, Taunton, 1988
*Most runs in a season: 2,654 by Harold Gibbons, 1934
*Most runs in a career: 34,490 by Don Kenyon, 1946–1967


*Best bowling in an innings: 9-23 by Fred Root v Lancashire, Worcester, 1931
*Best bowling in a match: 15-87 by Arthur Conway v Gloucestershire, Moreton-in-Marsh, 1914
*Most wickets in a season: 207 by Fred Root, 1925

Highest partnership for each wicket

*1st: 309 by Frederick Bowley and Harry Foster v Derbyshire County Cricket Club, Derby, 1901
*2nd: 316 by Stephen Moore and Vikram Solanki v Gloucestershire, Cheltenham 2008
*3rd: 438* by Graeme Hick and Tom Moody v Hampshire, Southampton, 1997
*4th: 330 by Ben Smith and Graeme Hick v Somerset, Taunton, 2006
*5th: 393 by Ted Arnold and William Burns v Warwickshire, Birmingham, 1909
*6th: 265 by Graeme Hick and Steve Rhodes v Somerset, Taunton, 1988
*7th: 256 by David Leatherdale and Steve Rhodes v Nottinghamshire, Nottingham, 2002
*8th: 184 by Steve Rhodes and Stuart Lampitt v Derbyshire, Kidderminster, 1991
*9th: 181 by John Cuffe and Robert Burrows v Gloucestershire, Worcester, 1907
*10th: 119 by William Burns and George Alfred Wilson v Somerset, Worcester, 1906

=List A=

*Highest team total: 404/3 in 60 overs vs Devon, Worcester, 1987
*Lowest team total: 70 all out in 22 overs vs Gloucestershire, Worcester, 2002
*Highest individual innings: 180* by Tom Moody vs Surrey, The Oval, 1994
*Best bowling: 7-19 by Neal Radford vs Bedfordshire, Bedford, 1991

Worcestershire Facts and Feats

* No fewer than seven Foster brethren represented Worcestershire during the period 1899–1934, with six appearing during the seasons 1908-11. The full list, with Worcestershire careers in brackets is: BS (1902-11), GN (1903-14), HK (1899–1925), MK (1908-34), NJA (1914-23), RE (1899–1912) and WL (1899–1911). Not surprisingly the county became known as 'Fostershire'.
* 29 year old batsman Worcestershire batsman Maurice Nichol died on the night of the rest day in the match against Essex at Chelmsford in 1934. He was known to have a heart weakness after a bout of pneumonia two years before. A minute's silence was observed before start of play on the Monday and the players wore black armbands. C.F. Walters, Nichol's captain, stroked an elegant century. Suggestions of 'horse play' were quickly debunked with a bruise on Nichol's chest explained by a blow from a ball.
* Cyril Walters made a record 9 centuries in a season for Worcestershire in 1933. Although he only averaged 30.75 in first-class cricket, he boasted an impressive 52.27 in Tests.
* Reg Perks took 9 wickets in an innings, for the second time, against Gloucestershire at Cheltenham. His 9 for 42 could have been even better as the last batsman was dropped off his bowling. He took a record 2143 for Worcestershire.

ee also

* [http://www.wccc.co.uk/club_history.html Worcestershire CCC history]


External sources

* [http://cricketarchive.co.uk/Archive/Grounds/11/grounds_for_country_11.html Grounds in England] from CricketArchive. Retrieved 9 December 2006.
* [http://www.wccc.co.uk Worcestershire County Cricket Club]

Further reading

* H S Altham, "A History of Cricket, Volume 1 (to 1914)", George Allen & Unwin, 1962
* Derek Birley, "A Social History of English Cricket", Aurum, 1999
* Rowland Bowen, "Cricket: A History of its Growth and Development", Eyre & Spottiswoode, 1970
* Roy Webber, "The Playfair Book of Cricket Records", Playfair Books, 1951

* Playfair Cricket Annual – various editions
* Wisden Cricketers Almanack – various editions

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