County Championship – W 3, L 1

Captain – G Parr

There was a problem with the fixture list for 1867. The dispute with Surrey excluded that county and Yorkshire were in disarray. The committee arranged matches home and away with Middlesex and Cambridgeshire and a home match with the North of England. Kent and Sussex were regarded as too weak to be capable of drawing a decent crowd.

In early June, Notts beat Cambridgeshire at Fenner’s by 120 runs. Notts scored 114 in their first innings with right-bat George Paling making a career best 41 not out, the home side were bowled out for 78 (George Wootton 6-45, Jemmy Shaw 4-34). Notts then made 182 (William Oscroft 44) and Cambridgeshire 97 all out failed once more as George Howitt (5-25) was the outstanding second innings bowler. Two weeks later Notts beat Middlesex by six wickets at the Cattle Market Ground in Islington. Middlesex won the toss and batted first and were 190 all out (Jemmy Shaw 6-96). Richard Daft batted at number 4 and made 72 not out as Notts totalled 217 (Russell Walker 6-91). Trailing by 27 runs on first innings, Middlesex were 137 all out, as Jemmy Shaw had match figures of 9-152. George Summers (37) ensured Notts easily obtained the 111 runs required.

Cambridgeshire’s George Tarrant (5-21) and Walter Watts (5-36) filleted Notts for 61 at Trent Bridge. Tom Hayward, uncle of the legendary Surrey namesake top scored with 52 as Cambridge acquired a lead of 139 runs, despite Jemmy Shaw taking 6-64. Notts narrowly avoided the innings defeat being 147 all out (Daft 62 not out, Watts 7-46). Notts closed their County programme in the last week of July as Middlesex came to Trent Bridge and contested a close fought game. The visitors had a first innings lead of 11 (215 versus 204), John Oscroft, brother of William, hitting 51 in the first innings, the highest score of the match.  Despite playing intermittently for the county until 1874, he never improved upon this score. Wootton took 5-60 as Middlesex were bowled out for 118. Notts needed 130 and got home with four wickets in a hand, wicket-keeper Sam Biddulph scoring 32.

A month later a strong North side were victorious by at Trent Bridge by 122 runs. Alfred Shaw (6-37) and Jemmy Shaw (3-35) bowled the North for 91. George Tarrant (Cambridgeshire - 5-55) and George Freeman (Yorkshire - 5-45) could not prevent Notts leading by 20 runs at the half-way point. Cambridgeshire right-handed opener John Smith scored 92 as North scored 240. Tarrant (4-53) and Freeman (4-45) bowled unchanged as Notts were all out of 109.

Daft (262 runs @43.66) was the leader run-scorer. The bowling was dominated by Jemmy Shaw (33 wickets @15.60) and Wootton (27 wickets @14.61).

A more promising cricketer making his county debut was George Summers (151 runs @25.16). Opening the innings in 1867, he immediately gained a permanent place in the county side. A very strong defence was allied to an elegant style and he was also a brilliant fieldsman who 'always bore himself much more like a gentleman than the half-and-half amateurs who sometimes play in big matches'.

Notts had to concede the title of Championship County to Yorkshire in 1867. A review of the season noted; 'There is one point on which all parties seem to be agreed, namely that it had only been through the introduction of new blood into the eleven since the formation of the County Committee, that the Notts Eleven has had such good fortune and that some further infusion has again become necessary'.

John Johnson, who had reluctantly continued in office in 1867, resigned as Honorary Secretary and Treasurer at the AGM in January 1868. The position was filled by GB Davy of Whatton, a major in the Robin Hood Rifles. Educated at Eton and Cambridge, he was acknowledged to be one of the best concertina players in England. His father made a fortune as a guano merchant and lived in Colston Bassett Hall, where a private cricket ground was established. Davy appeared, usually as an opening bat, for Notts Gentlemen.

July 2020