England cricket team in North America in 1859

England Cricket Team In North America In 1859

England cricket team in North America in 1859

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The English cricket team in North America in 1859 was the first ever overseas cricket tour.


The idea for the tour came from WP Pickering (1819-1905), who had been captain of cricket at Eton College in 1837 and 1838. He had emigrated to Canada in 1852 and played for Canada against the United States the following year. He originally opened discussions for a possible tour in 1856 but financial problems meant that it was three years before the money could be raised. The English team required a guarantee of £750, which Pickering obtained through the Montreal Club.


The English team comprised six members of the All-England Eleven and six of the United All-England Eleven.

With George Parr as captain, the twelve players were effectively the cream of professional talent in the 1859 English cricket season that had just ended:


Five matches were played, all against XXIIs, so none had first-class status. Three exhibition games were also played in which the 12 England players divided and added five North Americans to each team to make up eleven-a-side matches. Including travelling time, the trip lasted two months and each English player (all professionals) cleared about £90, a sizeable sum at...
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