In 1854 the Garrison Club defeated the Royal Victoria Club in the first recorded cricket match to be played at what was then the Garrison Ground. Although major games were played at the Domain, the Garrison Ground was used for practice by the NSW cricket team in 1860 and by the Victorian team in 1861 the before inter-colonial matches in those years.
Cricket was first played in Australia in Sydney's Hyde Park in 1803. However, up until the appointment of trustees to look after the SCG in the late 1870s, several different grounds had been used for major matches. The Domain was first used for inter-colonial games and then the Albert Ground in Redfern but in time both became unavailable, the Domain because of its poor condition and because it could not be fenced in and the Albert Ground because it closed in the late 1870s.
After the closure of the Albert Ground the New South Wales Cricket Association began using the Association Ground. The first major game played there was the final of the Civil Service Challenge Cup on 25 October 1877, between the New South Wales Government Printing Office and the Audit Office, and the first first-class match was the inter-colonial game, New South Wales against Victoria, in February 1878.
During the 1878–79 season Lord Harris' England team toured Australia. The feature of the tourists game against New South Wales at the SCG in 1879 was a riot sparked apparently when the crowd disagreed with an umpiring decision by George Coulthard that went against the locals. Lord Harris believed the invasion of the ground by about 2000 spectators was actually started by bookmakers in the stand. One of the umpires for the match was Edmund Barton, later to become Australia's first Prime Minister.
By the time the first test was played at the SCG between 17 February and 21 February 1882 the ground was in fine condition. The NSWCA had appointed Ned Gregory as curator and given him a cottage next to the ground for him and his family. Australia won that game by overhauling England's scores of 133 and 232 with scores of 197 and 5 for 169.
The ground high score in Test cricket was held for more than a century by Englishman Reg "Tip" Foster, who scored 287 in an Australia-England match in 1903. In the 100th test to be played at the SCG in January 2012, Michael Clarke was joined first by Ricky Ponting in a partnership of 288 and then by Michael Hussey in a partnership of 334 and built a score of 329 not out.
Don Bradman made his first visit to the ground in the 1920–21 season to watch the Fifth Test of the Australia and England series. In that game Charlie Macartney scored 170 to help seal a win for Australia.
Bradman scored the highest ever first-class innings of 452 at the SCG for New South Wales against Queensland in 1928–29. This record was surpassed by Hanif Mohammad who scored 499 run out. It was further bettered by the West Indian Brian Lara who scored 501 in 1994.
The 1928–29 season was a big one for cricket. On 15 December, the largest ever crowd to attend a cricket match at the SCG, 58,446, saw Australia and England play. With changes to the ground seating the record is unlikely to be beaten.
In the last test of the 1970–71 English tour, England fast bowler John Snow struck Australian spinner and tailender Terry Jenner on the head with a bouncer. The Sydney crowd let Snow and the English know they were not happy with his behaviour and when Snow took up his fielding position on the fence a spectator spoke to him and grabbed him by the shirt. Cans were thrown onto the field and England captain Ray Illingworth took his team from the ground.
The first women's club cricket match was held at the SCG in 1886 when the Fernleas played the Siroccos. Although cricket was not seen as an appropriate game for women, women's cricket associations were formed in Victoria in 1905 and other states in the 1920s and 1930s.
Night cricket came to the SCG in 1978 with the first World Series Cricket match to be played at the SCG on 28 November that year. A crowd of 50,000 packed the ground.
Read more about this topic: Sydney Cricket Ground
Famous quotes containing the word cricket:
“All cries are thin and terse;
The field has droned the summers final mass;
A cricket like a dwindled hearse
Crawls from the dry grass.”
—Richard Wilbur (b. 1921)
“The thing that struck me forcefully was the feeling of great age about the place. Standing on that old parade ground, which is now a cricket field, I could feel the dead generations crowding me. Here was the oldest settlement of freedmen in the Western world, no doubt. Men who had thrown off the bands of slavery by their own courage and ingenuity. The courage and daring of the Maroons strike like a purple beam across the history of Jamaica.”
—Zora Neale Hurston (18911960)