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Cricket in the Olympic Games 1900 Review
by Peter Griffiths


Event:Olympic Games 1900

DateLine: 2nd October 2006

 

The provisional Olympic programme "des Jeux Olympiques de 1896", published in Paris in January 1895 and drawn up previously by the organisers in Athens in late 1894, listed cricket as one of the official sports. In the event, insufficient entries were received and cricket did not appear in the 1896 Games.

 

The only cricket match to take place in the Olympics was staged at the 1900 Games held in conjunction with the Paris Exhibition. Indeed the handbills for the match only mention 'Exposition Universelle de 1900". However a 1900 fixture card for the Albion Cricket Club (one of the 8 Clubs playing cricket in Paris at the time) shows that three matches were scheduled:
Aug 4/5 Belgium v Frnace
Aug 11/12 Holland v France
Aug 19/20 England v France
Only the last match took place.

 

The match was oficially recognised as a formal Olympic competition in 1912 , when the International Olympic Committee drew up a roll of all the events that had taken place in the Paris Olympiad of 1900.

 

The minutes of the Dutch Cricket Board show that at their meeting on 16 July 1900 there was a discussion on participation in the tournament. It was noted in the minutes that a match was scheduled between Holland and France on August 12/13. The invitation was declined due to lack of finance and there not being much interest.

 

The prime mover at this period behind the Castle Cary Cricket Club was W.S.Donne. He organised over 20 tours for the Club - when on tour the Club called itself the Devon and Somerset Wanderers. Their tour to France in 1900 included three matches of which the 'Olympic' one was the first, the other two being one-day matches on the following two days which they won by 15 runs and by two wickets. They stayed in the Hotel des Trois Princes in Paris for four days. The other two members of the party - who did not play in the Olympic match were F.Thompson and E.Thompson.

 


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