Gloucestershire County Cricket Club is one of eighteen first-class county clubs within the domestic cricket structure of England and Wales. It represents the historic county of Gloucestershire. Founded in 1870, Gloucestershire have always been first-class and have played in every top-level domestic cricket competition in England. The club played its first senior match in 1870 and W. G. Grace was their captain. The club plays home games at the Bristol County Ground in the Bishopston area of north Bristol. A number of games are also played at the Cheltenham Cricket Festival at the College Ground, Cheltenham and matches have also been played at the Gloucester cricket festival at The King's School, Gloucester.
Gloucestershire's most famous players have been W. G. Grace, whose father founded the club, and Wally Hammond, who scored 113 centuries for them. The club has had two notable periods of success: in the 1870s when it was unofficially acclaimed as the Champion County on at least three occasions, and from 1999 to 2006 when it won seven limited overs trophies, notably a ‘double double’ in 1999 and 2000 (both the Benson and Hedges Cup and the C&G Trophy in both seasons), and the Sunday League in 2000.
First XI honours
- Champion County (3) – 1874, 1876, 1877, shared (1) – 1873
- County Championship (0)
- Runners-up (6): 1930, 1931, 1947, 1959, 1969, 1986
- Royal London One-Day Cup (1) – 2015
- Sunday/National League/Pro40 (1) – 2000
- Runners-up (2): 1988, 2003
- Division Two (2): 2002, 2006
- Gillette/NatWest/C&G Trophy (5) – 1973, 1999, 2000, 2003, 2004,
- Semi-finalists (5): 1968, 1971, 1975, 1987, 2009
- Benson & Hedges Cup (3) – 1977, 1999, 2000
- Finalists (1): 2001
- Semi-finalists (1): 1972
- Twenty20 Cup -
- Finalists (1): 2007
- Semi-finalists (1): 2003, 2020
Second XI honours
- Second XI Championship (1) – 1959
Cricket probably reached Gloucestershire by the end of the 17th century. It is known that the related sport of "Stow-Ball" aka "Stob-Ball" was played in the county during the 16th century. In this game, the bat was called a "stave". See Alice B Gomme : The Traditional Games of England, Scotland and Ireland.
A game in Gloucester on 22 September 1729 is the earliest definite reference to cricket in the county. From then until the founding of the county club, very little has been found outside parish cricket.
Origin of club
In the early 1840s, Dr Henry Grace and his brother-in-law Alfred Pocock founded the Mangotsfield Cricket Club which merged in 1846 with the West Gloucestershire Cricket Club, whose name was adopted until 1867, after which it became the Gloucestershire County Cricket Club. Grace hoped that Gloucestershire would join the first-class county clubs but the situation was complicated in 1863 by the formation of a rival club called the Cheltenham and Gloucestershire Cricket Club.
Dr Grace's club played Gloucestershire's initial first-class match versus Surrey at Durdham Down in Bristol on 2, 3 & 4 June 1870. Gloucestershire joined the (unofficial) County Championship at this time but the existence of the Cheltenham club seems to have forestalled the installation of its "constitutional trappings". The Cheltenham club was wound up in March 1871 and its chief officials accepted positions in the hierarchy of Gloucestershire. So, although the exact details and dates of the county club's foundation are uncertain, it has always been assumed that the year was 1870 and the club celebrated its centenary in 1970.
The early history of Gloucestershire is dominated by the Grace family, most notably W G Grace, who was the club's original captain and held that post until his departure for London in 1899. His brother E M Grace, although still an active player, was the original club secretary. With the Grace brothers and Billy Midwinter in their team, Gloucestershire won three Champion County titles in the 1870s.
Since then Gloucestershire's fortunes have been mixed and they have never won the official County Championship. They struggled in the pre-war years of the County Championship because their best batsmen, apart from Gilbert Jessop and briefly Charlie Townsend, were very rarely available. The bowling, except when Townsend did sensational things on sticky wickets in late 1895 and late 1898, was very weak until George Dennett emerged – then it had the fault of depending far too much on him. Wally Hammond, who still holds many of the county's batting records formed part of an occasionally strong inter-war team, although the highest championship finish during this period was second in 1930 and 1931, when Charlie Parker and Tom Goddard formed a devastating spin attack.
Dominance in one-day cricket (1999–2004)
Gloucestershire was very successful in one-day cricket in the late 1990s and early 2000s winning several titles under the captaincy of Mark Alleyne and coaching of John Bracewell. The club operated on a small budget and was famed as a team greater than the sum of its parts, boasting few international stars. Gloucestershire's overall knockout record between 1999 and 2002 was 28 wins and seven losses from 37 games, including 16 wins from 18 at the Bristol County Ground.
The club's run of success started by defeating Yorkshire to win the Benson & Hedges Super Cup in 1999 before then beating neighbours Somerset in the 1999 NatWest Trophy final at Lord's. In 2000 Gloucestershire completed a hat-trick of one-day titles, winning all the domestic limited overs tournaments, the Benson and Hedges Cup, the C&G Trophy and the Sunday League in the same season. The club maintained its success winning the C&G Trophy in 2003 and 2004, beating Worcestershire in the final on both occasions.
Recent years (2006–present)
The club's captain for the 2006 season, Jon Lewis, became the first Gloucestershire player for nearly 10 years to play for England at Test match level, when he was picked to represent his country in the Third Test against Sri Lanka at Trent Bridge in June 2006. His figures in the first innings were 3–68, including a wicket in his very first over in Test cricket, and he was widely praised for his debut performance.
Following the retirement of several key players, such as "Jack" Russell and Mark Alleyne, Gloucestershire's fortunes declined. The club subsequently stripped back its playing budget as it looked to finance the redevelopment of the Bristol County Ground in order to maintain Category B status and secure future international games at their home ground. Performances suffered and despite reaching the final of the 2007 Twenty20 Cup, losing narrowly to Kent, the club failed to win any major trophies for a decade.
In 2013 Gloucestershire stopped using 'Gloucestershire Gladiators' as its limited-overs name.
Gloucestershire won their first major silverware for 11 years in 2015, overcoming favoured Surrey to win the Royal London One-Day Cup in the final at Lord's. Captain Michael Klinger, who flew back from Australia to play in the semi-final win over Yorkshire, was named the tournament's MVP scoring 531 runs at an average of over 106.
Gloucestershire contest one of English cricket's fiercest rivalries, the West Country derby against Somerset, which usually draws the biggest crowd of the season for either team. Traditionally, the boundary between the counties is drawn by the River Avon. Although Gloucestershire CCC's home ground is in Bristol, which straddles the Avon (and has been a county in its own right since 1373), many people from south Bristol favour Somerset CCC despite the fact the club plays its home games much further away in Taunton. However, in the past Somerset have played first-class matches at venues in the south of Bristol.
The club's debut home match in first-class cricket was played at Durdham Down in the Clifton district of Bristol. This was the only time the county used this venue for a match. The following year Gloucestershire began to play matches at the Clifton College Close Ground in the grounds of Clifton College in the same part of the city, and this remained a regular venue for the county until the 1930s, hosting nearly 100 first-class matches. In 1872 the county used a venue outside Bristol for the first time when they played at the College Ground in the grounds of Cheltenham College. This venue has continued to be used regularly for the county's annual "Cheltenham festival" event, which in the modern era incorporates additional charity events and off-field entertainment. In 1889 Gloucestershire began to play matches at the Bristol County Ground in Bristol, which has subsequently served as the club's main headquarters and hosted the majority of the county's matches. It was here that the club played its first List A match in 1963 against Middlesex, and its first Twenty20 match forty years later against Worcestershire. Somerset have played first-class matches at other venues in the city.
In the 1920s Gloucestershire ceased playing at the Spa Ground in Gloucester, which had been in use since 1882, and switched to the Wagon Works Ground in the city. This ground remained in use for nearly 70 years, hosting over 150 first-class matches, before its use was discontinued in 1992. In 2012 the club investigated the possibility of returning to the Wagon Works Ground and making it their permanent headquarters after being refused permission for extensive redevelopment of the County Ground in Bristol, but ultimately this did not occur. In 1993, the club moved its base in Gloucester to Archdeacon Meadow, a ground owned by The King's School. This venue was only used for first-class matches until 2008 but was used for four Twenty20 matches in 2010 and 2011, the most recent county games to take place in the city. All subsequent matches have taken place in either Bristol or Cheltenham.
- No. denotes the player's squad number, as worn on the back of their shirt.
- denotes players with international caps.
|No.||Name||Nat||Birth date||Batting style||Bowling style||Notes|
|10||Jack Taylor||England||12 November 1991||Right-handed||Right-arm leg break||Captain (T20)|
|15||Chris Dent||England||20 January 1991||Left-handed||Slow left-arm orthodox|
|21||Marcus Harris||Australia||21 July 1992||Left-handed||—||Overseas player|
|64||Ben Charlesworth||England||19 November 2000||Left-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|88||Miles Hammond||England||11 January 1996||Left-handed||Right-arm off break|
|12||Graeme van Buuren||South Africa||22 August 1990||Right-handed||Slow left-arm orthodox||Club Captain; |
|19||Luke Charlesworth||England||4 April 2003||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|22||Will Naish||England||19 June 2003||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|53||Tom Price||England||2 January 2000||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|67||Ollie Price||England||12 June 2001||Right-handed||Right-arm off break|
|8||Tom Lace||England||27 May 1998||Right-handed||—|
|25||James Bracey||England||3 May 1997||Left-handed||—|
|72||Ben Wells||England||30 July 2000||Right-handed||—|
|4||Jared Warner||England||14 November 1996||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|5||Josh Shaw||England||3 January 1996||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|6||Tom Smith||England||29 August 1987||Right-handed||Slow left-arm orthodox|
|14||David Payne||England||15 February 1991||Left-handed||Left-arm fast-medium|
|36||Matthew Taylor||England||8 July 1994||Right-handed||Left-arm fast-medium|
|39||Ajeet Dale||England||3 July 2000||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|47||Paul van Meekeren||Netherlands||15 January 1993||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|77||Zafar Gohar||Pakistan||1 February 1995||Left-handed||Slow left-arm orthodox||Overseas player|
|83||Dominic Goodman||England||23 October 2000||Right-handed||Right-arm fast-medium|
|—||Marchant de Lange||South Africa||13 October 1990||Right-handed||Right-arm fast||UK Passport|
Among the international players who have represented Gloucestershire are:
- W G Grace
- E M Grace
- Fred Grace
- Billy Midwinter
- Gilbert Jessop
- Charlie Parker
- Wally Hammond
- Tom Goddard
- Sam Cook
- Tom Graveney
- Arthur Milton
- Mike Procter
- Zaheer Abbas
- Sadiq Mohammad
- Courtney Walsh
- David Lawrence
- Jack Russell
- Javagal Srinath
- Malinga Bandara
- Marcus North
- Aaron Redmond
- Ian Butler
- Hamish Marshall
- James Franklin
- Kane Williamson
- Rob Nicol
- Muttiah Muralitharan
- Ed Cowan
- Dan Christian
- Cameron Bancroft
- Michael Klinger
- Andrew Tye
- Peter Handscomb
- Mark Craig
- Cheteshwar Pujara
- Kevin Curran
- WG Grace 1870–1898
(Longest Serving Captain)
- WG Grace, W Troup 1899
- GL Jessop 1900–1912
- COH Sewell 1913–1914
- Sir FG Robinson 1919–1921
- PFC Williams 1922–1923
- DC Robinson : 1924–1926
- WH Rowlands 1927–1928
- BH Lyon 1929–1934
- DAC Page 1935–1936
- BO Allen 1937–1938
- WR Hammond 1939–1946
- BO Allen 1947–1950
- Sir DTL Bailey 1951–1952
- JF Crapp 1953–1954
- GM Emmett 1955–1958
- TW Graveney 1959–1960
- CTM Pugh 1961–1962
- JKR Graveney 1963–1964
- JB Mortimore 1965–1967
- CA Milton 1968
- AS Brown 1969–1976
- MJ Procter 1977–1981
- DA Graveney 1982–1988
- CWJ Athey 1989
- AJ Wright 1990–1992
- AJ Wright, CA Walsh 1993
- CA Walsh 1994
- RC Russell 1995
- CA Walsh 1996
- MW Alleyne 1997–2003
- CG Taylor 2004–2005
- J Lewis 2006–2008
- APR Gidman 2009–2012
- M Klinger 2013–2014
- GO Jones 2015
- GH Roderick 2016-2017
- CDJ Dent 2018-2021
- GL van Buuren 2022 to date 
Most first-class runs for Gloucestershire
Most first-class wickets for Gloucestershire
- Highest total for – 695–9 declared v. Middlesex, Archdeacon Meadow, Gloucester, 2004
- Highest total against – 774–7 declared by the Australians, Bristol, 1948
- Lowest total for – 17 v. the Australians, Cheltenham (Spa), 22 August 1896
- Lowest total against – 12 by Northamptonshire, Gloucester, 1907
- Highest score – 341 Craig Spearman v. Middlesex, Gloucester, 2004
- Most runs in season – 2,860 W. R. Hammond, 1933
- Most hundreds in career – 113 W. R. Hammond, 1920–1951
Best partnership for each wicket
- 1st – 395 D. M. Young & R. B. Nicholls v. Oxford University, Oxford, 1962
- 2nd – 256 C. T. M. Pugh & T. W. Graveney v. Derbyshire, Chesterfield, 1960
- 3rd – 392 A. P. R. Gidman & G. H. Roderick v. Leicestershire, Bristol, 2014
- 4th – 321 W. R. Hammond & W. L. Neale v. Leicestershire, Gloucester, 1937
- 5th – 261 W. G. Grace & WO Moberly v. Yorkshire, Cheltenham, 1876
- 6th – 320 G. L. Jessop & J. H. Board v. Sussex, Hove, 1903
- 7th – 248 W. G. Grace & E. L. Thomas v. Sussex, Hove, 1896
- 8th – 239 W. R. Hammond & A. E. Wilson v. Lancashire, Bristol, 1938
- 9th – 193 W. G. Grace & S. A. P. Kitcat v. Sussex, Bristol, 1896
- 10th – 137 L. C. Norwell & C. N. Miles v. Worcestershire, Cheltenham, 2014
- Best bowling – 10–40 E. G. Dennett v. Essex, Bristol, 1906
- Best match bowling – 17–56 C. W. L. Parker v. Essex, Gloucester, 1925
- Wickets in season – 222 T. W. J. Goddard, 1937 and 1947
One-day / T20 cricket
|Season||Kit supplier||Kit sponsor|
|2016||D&B Scaffolding||D&B Scaffolding|
- "Reliving Gloucestershire's limited-overs glory days". Espncricinfo.com. Archived from the original on 2 October 2018. Retrieved 29 September 2018.
- An unofficial seasonal title sometimes proclaimed by consensus of media and historians prior to December 1889 when the official County Championship was constituted. Although there are ante-dated claims prior to 1873, when residence qualifications were introduced, it is only since that ruling that any quasi-official status can be ascribed.
- Rae, p.89.
- CricketArchive – match scorecard. Archived 6 February 2018 at the Wayback Machine Retrieved on 24 November 2008.
- Andrew Miller (2 June 2006). "Swinging onto centre stage". ESPNcricinfo. Archived from the original on 3 August 2011. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
- Andrew McGlashan (4 August 2007). "Kent take Twenty20 in thrilling final". ESPNcricinfo. Archived from the original on 2 August 2014. Retrieved 5 May 2013.
- Pete Orchard (20 March 2014). "Talking Point: Should Gloucestershire County Cricket Club change their name?". Gloucestershire Echo. Archived from the original on 29 March 2014. Retrieved 11 October 2015.
- "Klinger completes MVP double | England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) - the Official Website of the ECB". Archived from the original on 13 October 2015. Retrieved 21 September 2015.
- "First-Class Matches played on Knowle Cricket Club Ground, Bristol (3)". CricketArchive. Archived from the original on 3 July 2015. Retrieved 3 July 2015.
- "First-Class Matches played on Imperial Athletic Ground, Bristol (9)". CricketArchive. Archived from the original on 4 July 2015. Retrieved 3 July 2015.
- "First-Class Matches played by Gloucestershire". CricketArchive. Archived from the original on 8 July 2015. Retrieved 7 July 2015.
- "First-Class Matches played on Durdham Down, Clifton (1)". CricketArchive. Archived from the original on 4 July 2015. Retrieved 3 July 2015.
- "Plans unveiled for 2015 Brewin Dolphin Cheltenham Cricket Festival". Bristol Post. 27 May 2015. Archived from the original on 14 July 2015. Retrieved 8 July 2015.
- "Gloucestershire's future in doubt". ESPNcricinfo. 11 January 2012. Archived from the original on 1 August 2015. Retrieved 10 July 2015.
- "Scorecard - Gloucestershire CCC vs Worcestershire CCC, 21-24 July 2014". ESPNcricinfo. Archived from the original on 23 July 2014. Retrieved 23 July 2014.
- H S Altham, A History of Cricket, Volume 1 (to 1914), George Allen & Unwin, 1962
- Derek Birley, A Social History of English Cricket, Aurum, 1999
- Rowland Bowen, Cricket: A History of its Growth and Development, Eyre & Spottiswoode, 1970
- Simon Rae, W G Grace, Faber & Faber, 1998
- J R Webber, The Chronicle Of W.G., The Association Of Cricket Statisticians and Historians, 1998
- Roy Webber, The Playfair Book of Cricket Records, Playfair Books, 1951
- Playfair Cricket Annual – various editions
- Wisden Cricketers' Almanack – various editions