Indian First Class Season 1892-93
There are various opinions about the exact start of First Class
cricket in India. There is a difference of opinion among historians
and statisticians about this. Among many important researches carried
out todate, probably the most significant and exhaustive one is by
the Association of Cricket Statisticians (ACS). The ACS published a
very important book 'A guide to First Class Cricket in India' in 1986
and that book has almost invariably become the standard book of
reference for all further research. Although the present author
disagrees about the classification of a couple of matches, there is
no reason not to accept the ACS match list as the correct standard.
According to the contemporary opinion, First Class cricket in India
began in this season. The first ever First Class match on the Indian
soil was played during this season at Poona on 26 and 27 August, 1892.
The season comprised of the Bombay Presidency matches and the Lord
Hawke's Team's tour to India (which, incidentally was the first ever
tour by any team to India which was to gain a First Class status).
The Bombay Presidency matches were played between Parsis and
Europeans. This is believed to be the first domestic tournament in
India to have a First Class status. Since the inception of this
tournament, two matches were played each season (apart from abnormal
circumstances). In a few years time, Parsis were to be briefly
replaced by Hindus. Later, the same tournament was 'extended' to
become a trinagular with Parsis and Hindus, both joining Europeans.
This tournament started to get immense popularity and was to later
become Quadrangular and then Pentangular and continued until the late
1940s when India became independent and was later partitioned.
In 1892-93, apart from the two Bombay Presidency matches, four other
matches played by Lord Hawke's team are considered as First Class.
Although Lord Hawke's team played many other matches on the tour,
they are not considered to have a First Class status. The main
criterion for classifying matches in this case, apart from the
references in Wisden 1894 is the fact that only Parsis and Europeans
were believed to have First Class sides.
References :: Various ACS journals and books, contemporary newspapers
<END> Contributed by Atul Kahate (Atul.Kahate@Virgin.Net)
Date-stamped : 13 Feb1998 - 02:32