Born on 28 May 1850 in Arnold, Joseph Sulley was the professional for Notts Amateurs in 1887, he had some remarkable bowling figures in local cricket during the early part of that season, the most outstanding of which was performed for Bestwood Park versus Harrington United, his figures being 13-11-4-9. He was chosen to play for Notts v Surrey at the Oval in August 1887, in place of the injured Scotton, on the strength of his performances in club cricket. Despite the importance of the occasion Sulley gave a most creditable display - taking 4-66 and 2-40 against the County Champions of 1887; he also scored 11 and 4. He was a left-arm medium pace bowler, with a break from the off, and a fair batsman. His only other First-Class appearance was in July in the following year against Yorkshire at Trent Bridge, where he scored 1 and 5 not out and took 2-53 and 0-1.
Sulley first appeared for Arnold and Bestwood Park in 1869. He never appeared in any of the Notts Colts games. He became a cricket professional in Lancashire in the 1870s and whilst with the Manchester club in 1880 made his First-Class debut in the Gentlemen of North v Players of North fixture at Old Trafford in July 1880. The Gentlemen were two players short and called in two local professionals, Sulley and Sutton-in-Ashfield born Johnny Briggs (Lancashire and England), to fill the places. The Players won by three wickets, Sulley, though, had a good game for the losers scoring 31 and 5 and having figures of 5-46 and 2-45. Two months earlier, Sulley had scored 34 not out and taken 10 wickets in the match for the Manchester club versus Lancashire Colts XVI at Old Trafford.
He was a noted athlete; in February 1871 he won the Sheffield Shrove Tuesday Handicap for sprinting. He was originally a framework knitter but later became the landlord of The Seven Stars on Calverton Lane in Arnold. He died In 14 February 1932 aged 81 at his home on Church Drive, Daybrook.
Nottinghamshire First-Class Number: 196