|Ground:||Raeburn Place, Edinburgh|
|Scorecard:||Scotland v GL Jessop's XI|
|Event:||GL Jessop's XI in Scotland 1903|
DateLine: 4th February 2013
The two days' match between G.L. Jessop's eleven and an eleven of Scotland at Raeburn Place, Edinburgh, shortly before twelve o'clock, when the visitors, having won the toss, opened the batting before a very fair attendance.
There was only one change in the Scottish team, C.T. Mannes (Drumpellier) being unable to play, and W.R. Sharp (Forfarshire) though he would rather have stood out, kindly consented, at practically the eleventh hour, to fill the vacancy. There were, however, four changes in the team announced to play for the visitors, and the absence of Llewellyn (Hampshire) was a big disappointment, the others who did not come north being Bestwick (Derbyshire) and A.E. Neild (Gloucester) while Nott also of Gloucester, instead of playing, was umpire for the visitors, George Howell (Fettes) officiating at the other end. The vacancies were filled by A.E. Beldam (Middlesex), a cousin of the county player; W. Williams also of Middlesex; and Brockwell and Montgomery of Surrey, so that the team included five who might be called county men.
Yesterday's cricket, as most people probably expected, went all in favour of the visiting team, and at close of play it looked as if the Scotsmen would have enough to do to save the follow-on this forenoon.
Fine weather favoured the engagement, though there was some rain in the afternoon, but the attendance, though at its height it must have approached to nearly 2000, was rather disappointing, and as the stand put up by the Grange was not required, its erection must have been a dead loss to the promoting club.
Those who did patronise the game saw some very interesting play, and if only the Scottish eleven had replied with more heart to the 263 compiled by their opponents, there would have been no reason to grumble. It was G.L. Jessop, however, the spectators had come chiefly to see, and if he only stayed in for half an hour, he gave quite a characteristic display, and those who have not even seen him before got a very good idea of how rapidly and yet how easily he can make runs.
His innings was a treat as regards the clever way he placed the ball between fielders. He seemed to be playing just a quiet and ordinary game, too, and there was absolutely no appearance of great effort being expended on his hits; yet, as can easily be imagined, runs came very freely from his bat.
In decided contrast to Jessop's batting was that of Beldam, for while the Gloucester man rattled on 61 in thirty two minutes, the latter was in for six times as long and scored only 19 more. Absolutely no fault, however, could be found with Beldam's cricket, except that it was distinctly slow, and his defence was of the soundest.
There was a big "tail" to Jessop's team, and some of the last men shaped in a way which seemed to indicate that their chances of participating in the near future in county cricket are very remote.
On the whole, the Scots offered a poor resistance to the attack of the visitors, though some very fair cricket was seen while they were at the wickets. They finished off 136 behind so that 37 runs are still wanted to save the follow-on, and only three wickets remain to be captured.
The start of the visitors was not a good one, for, with only 16 on the board, C.L. Townsend was clean bowled by Dennett with a ball which broke just enough to beat the bat, and at 25 T.H. Fowler was nicely taken at slip, after getting a "life" from A. Blacklock, who should have stumped him off Dennett a run earlier.
The next pair, however, seemed pretty well established at the crease, though G.J.V. Weigall would have been run out when he had made 4 if Blacklock had broken the wicket from a smart throw in by H.J. Stevenson. It took the visitors an hour to score 53 runs, and at 65 a double change was tried, F. Hoggarth and W. Webster relieving the Grange professionals, who had opened the attack.
The change, however, only accelerated the rate of run-getting, and, though Stevenson went on with his lobs at 77, the pair were still together at lunch time when an hour and thirty five minutes play had produced 89.
So carefully had Beldam played that it took him an hour to get his first 10 runs. With only other 3 runs recorded on resuming, Weigall was forced to go, caught cleverly by Sharp at cover point off a breaking ball from Dennett.
Brockwell and Montgomery went in for lively hitting, and the former paid the penalty by being stumped, and the latter was clean beaten and bowled by Dennett, after being missed in the long field off that bowler by R.H. Johnston. Brockwell had three 4's, one 3, and three 2's, and Montgomery five 4's, and one 2.
Meanwhile Beldam was batting with the utmost care and patience, and excepting a chance to the wicket keeper at 44, and a very bad stroke at 60, he never appeared to make a mistake. Jessop's advent was, of course, the signal for a hearty round of applause, and he was not long in giving the spectators cause to repeat their cheers, for, after a quiet opening and a bad stroke early on, from which the ball went over Stevenson's head at cover point, he hit out in great style, and with four successive drives he found the boundary.
Stevenson's lobs he punished freely, scoring 15 off his first over, three 4's and two 2's. He got 50 in twenty five minutes, but seven minutes later he jumped out of his ground to drive Dennett, and missing the ball, was easily stumped by the Selkirk wicket keeper, who, notwithstanding a slip or two, was doing capital work. In his merry 61 he had eight 4's, one 3, and nine 2's, and if many of them present would have willingly seen a little more of him, his dismissal was greeted with cheers. Strangely enough, he was out in the same manner in the first innings at Uddingston last year.
When he retired the score stood at 252, and the other four wickets, thanks to good fielding only added 11 runs, the catch at point which dismissed Crosby being especially noteworthy, for the batsman cut the ball very hard to J. Anderson.
The visitors were thus disposed of for a much smaller total than at one time seemed likely, and Beldam carried his bat right through the innings for a very correctly compiled score of 80, was playing as carefully at the finish as when taking his first over.
He was in for three hours and twenty minutes, and of course the innings lasted the same time. The fielding of the Scottish side was distinctly good, and Blacklock, besides stumping two men, kept wickets so well that he only gave away three byes.
Opening with Sharp and Stevenson, after about an hour's interval owing to rain, the Scotsmen made a fair start, and 27 had been scored before Stevenson in attempting a drive to the ropes, played a weak stroke to mid-on, and at 44 Anderson touched a ball he should have left alone, and was held in slip.
Hoggarth and Sharp, however, looked like improving matters. They seemed quite at home together, and both were getting runs steadily and by means of excellent cricket, but when they had added 23 the Gala man sent a ball into the hands of Montgomery at point, and three wickets were down for 57.
Brockwell, who met with much success on going on at 31, got Webster out for obstruction at 81 and a run later Townsend relieved Montgomery at the other end. The new bowler varied his bowling most judiciously and in his third over got rid of Sharp, and in his next over John Kerr got his leg in front to a straight one after making a very poor shape at the ball.
At that time Townsend had two wickets for 6 runs. Six were then out for 101, and hopes were centred in R.H. Johnston, but these were soon dissipated, for two later the captain of the Scottish eleven, after a careful innings, was out in much the same fashion as Anderson, caught in slip off a rising ball; in fact, it looked as if both had fallen to a trap set them by the Surrey professional.
The next pair, however, F. Blacklock and A.S. Cairns kept their ends up for fully twenty minutes until time for drawing stumps, and though the Leith Caledonian representative had a hankering after some of Brockwell's off theory deliveries, he fortunately did not manage to touch any of them.
While together the pair added 24 runs, which so far was the best stand of the innings and both, as the situation demanded, had played with the greatest care.
When play was resumed yesterday in this match at Raeburn Place, Edinburgh, the Scottish side found themselves in a very uncomfortable position, for with seven wickets down they were 135 runs behind, and thus wanted 37 to save running the risk of being compelled to follow on. So well, however, did the not outs A.S. Cairns (17) and A. Blacklock (8) that they not only got the 37, but carried the total from 127, at which figure it stood overnight, to 192 before they were parted.
Both men played in the same confident fashion as they did during the twenty minutes they were together on Monday, and they were never in difficulties with any of the six bowlers tried. They knew that much depended on their efforts, and very wisely they took no risks with the attack, and that their efforts were successful was shown by the fact that they put on 89 for the eighth wicket, 65 of these being put on yesterday in an hour's time.
Cairns scored the faster of the two but both had several boundaries, and the spectators, who were delighted with their display, were ready to applaud every good stroke. It was the eighth wicket partnership which saved the situation for the Scottish side, and when both did so well it would be invidious to give one of the men greater praise than the other.
Cairns was first to go, and played very wildly at the ball which struck his leg and led to his retirement, leg before wicket. He had five 4's, six 3's, and two 2's in his more than useful 56, and Blacklock, who was last man out, had four 4's, five 3's, and four 2's. He was in just under two hours, and he and Cairns were largely responsible for the good show made by the Scotsmen.
The Caledonian man, who, by the way, gave a hard chance at 44, got most of the runs by late cutting, and on the leg side; while Blacklock, who showed the soundest of defence, scored all round the wickets. The striking feature of his display, however was its steadiness, and he never gave a chance, and had hard luck in just missing his half hundred. The eleven were all out for 227, so that exactly 100 had been scored yesterday.
At the beginning of the visitors' second innings Beldam allowed his partner to do all the hitting, and when Townsend fell to a good catch in the slips, the Middlesex man had only got five singles out of the total of 45, the ex-Gloucester amateur having meanwhile hit seven 4's, one 3, and one 2, in his lively 37.
Brockwell and Beldam had a very profitable partnership, and, with the amateur wakening up and scoring just as freely as the professional, the first hour of the innings produced 94 runs. It was at that total that Stevenson took the ball, and some sensational cricket was then seen. After two singles had been hit off him, the new bowler completely beat and bowled the Surrey man, the ball curling round the batsman's legs and striking his wicket.
From a Scottish point of view, the partnership was not broken up too soon, for the pair had put on 50 exactly. Then Weigall was in difficulties with the lobs, and off the second ball of Stevenson's second over he gave the bowler a chance of catching him, which Stevenson, who was half way up the pitch, was quick to take, two wickets for two runs for the bowler, and three for 98.
But the sensation of the day was to come when Jessop came in. He stayed the first ball he received to mid-off, and off the second ball he had his wicket removed by the wicket keeper when out of his ground, Blacklock thus having the credit of dismissing the Gloucester captain in both innings by stumping.
The famous hitter has played four innings in Scotland, and curiously enough he has been thrice stumped. Jessop's early departure was the signal for a loud shout from the crowd, but, on second thoughts, the spectators would, no doubt, be disappointed, particularly those who had not seen him on Monday, that they had not had an opportunity of witnessing his hitting powers.
The next wicket, however, made a good show, and before they were parted had raised the total from 98 to 166. It was Dennett's bowling that was responsible for the separation. He went on at 157, and after 7 had been hit off his first four balls, he got two wickets with two, but Fowler and Crosby gave the score a lift to 197, when the former hitting out at Dennett, gave R.H. Johnston a chance of bringing off a good catch near the ropes, and off the next ball Crosby was out to another fine catch at long-off.
Dennett had thus for the second time in the innings taken two wickets in succession, and after going on this time Dennett took four wickets for 11 runs. The last wicket fell with the total at 201, the innings having lasted just under two hours and a half.
With a chance of being beaten and no prospect of winning, the Scotsmen opened with Stevenson and Sharp and they made a satisfactory start, 30 having been got in little over half an hour, and they looked well set when the latter was smartly caught by the bowler, Montgomery, with the total at 44.
Then Stevenson and Hoggarth played in capital style, and things were going so well with the batting side that 70 went up without further loss, the first hour having produced 60 runs.
When there was no possibility of his side being defeated, Stevenson began to hit out, and twice in one over he drove balls from Montgomery over the ropes, the ball on one of these occasions finding a resting place in the Press-box.
At 77 he was given out for obstruction, and he was just one short of his half century. Among his hits were five 4's, two 3's, and five 2's. Another misfortune befell the Scotsmen shortly afterwards, Cairns, who had done so admirably in the first innings, being leg before in Williams first over, after getting a single and a 4.
The total was then 82 for three wickets, and before any more had been done, rain, which had been threatening for some time, drove the players to shelter, and shortly afterwards, three quarters of an hour before time, the game was abandoned as a draw.
From a Scottish standpoint, the match was in every respect a success. The players gave an excellent account of themselves, and with about 2000 spectators present on the first day and about 1500 on the second day, the Grange are likely to be in pocket over the engagement. A sum of about £70 was drawn on the first day.
(Article: Copyright © 2013 Cricket Scotland http://cricketscotland.com)
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