The name of George Summers is for ever connected with the tragedy that occurred during the Nottinghamshire v MCC match at Lord’s in June 1870. Nottinghamshire batted first and Summers went in first wicket down with the County’s score standing at 29. With the addition of a further 10 runs, Bignall’s wicket fell and Daft joined Summers. The pair added 129 for the third wicket when Summers was bowled by a shooter from Platts. He had played an excellent innings of 41.
When Nottinghamshire batted again the first ball which Summers received, bowled by Platts, struck the batsman on the cheek-bone. He was carried insensible from the field and although he recovered sufficiently to return to Nottingham - against medical advice - George Summers died at his home three days later on 19 June 1870.
A stone to his memory still stands in the Nottingham General Cemetery, the inscription reading: ‘This tablet was erected to the memory of George Summers by the Marylebone Cricket Club to mark their sense of his qualities as a cricketer and to testify their regret at the untimely accident on Lord’s ground which cut short a career so full of promise. June 19th, 1870, in the 26th year of his age.’
George Summers was born in Nottingham on 21 June 1844, and resided at 35 Station Street. He was a fine batsman with an excellent defence and a good fieldsman at cover point or long leg. He first played for the XXII Colts in August 1864 and again in April 1867. His debut in First-Class cricket was for Nottinghamshire v Middlesex at Islington in June 1867, when he scored 29 and 37; he appeared in all but one of the Nottinghamshire matches from that date until his death.
He visited Paris with a Nottingham team in 1864 and scored 90 in one innings.
Nottinghamshire First-Class Number: 114
An article about George Summers and his untimely demise can be found here