Home > News >

Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack is now 150 not out

Wisden

The first edition was a 112-page work, in contrast to the some 1,500 pages needed to encompass the modern game © AFP (File Pic)

London: Apr 10, 2013

It started as a the work of a former cricketer looking to secure an income in his retirement and was priced at a modest one shilling.

By contrast, Wednesday saw the publication of the 150th edition of Wisden Cricketers’ Almanack, with the hardback edition a somewhat more expensive £50 ($76, 59 euros).

In the intervening years the publication founded by John Wisden — an English professional bowler known for his “fast and ripping off-cutters” — has established itself as the “bible of cricket”.

Published every year since 1864 — not even two world wars interrupted the unbroken sequence — the appearance of the annual, primarily a review of the previous year’s English cricket season but now encompassing the global cricket calendar, has become a landmark event among the game’s enthusiasts.

That first edition was a 112-page work, in contrast to the some 1,500 pages needed to encompass the modern game, and included such random details as the lengths of Britain’s canals.

Also there were the dates of the Wars of the Roses — a series of dynastic wars fought for the English crown in the 15th century — and the rules of an ancient pub game called Knur and Spell.

But over time features that have become staples made their first appearance, with 1889 marking the debut of the Almanack’s Cricketers of the Year — a highly prized award which a player can win only once in their career.

Recipients have ranged from giants of the game in the 19th and early 20th centuries such as WG Grace and Jack Hobbs to modern-day greats from Viv Richards and Ian Botham to current England skipper Alastair Cook and Indian legend Sachin Tendulkar.

“It was an honour to be named one of the Wisden Cricketers of the Year in 1993 because you feel like you are being recognised by one of the game’s great institutions,” former England captain Alec Stewart told the BBC.

The reference work’s familiar yellow cover made its debut with the 1938 edition, as did the woodcut image by artist Eric Ravilious of two Victorian-era gentlemen playing cricket, which has since become Wisden’s emblem.

Having outlived some early rivals, Wisden established a pre-eminent place in cricket publishing.

But in an age when cricket statistics and comment are just a mouse-click away and the Internet provides a constantly updated supply of information, how will Wisden, having reached a well-known cricketing landmark “score” of 150, press on to its double century?

“In an age of tweeting and blogging, which are both important nowadays, we try to make a virtue of the fact that we can step back and take a considered view,” current editor Lawrence Booth told the BBC.

“The fact that people still buy Wisden suggests there is still an affection for that approach. Until people stop buying it we will carry on doing it.”

India tour of Australia 2014, Practice matches

Nov 24, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Glenelg, Adelaide

Pakistan vs New Zealand in UAE, 2014

Nov 26, 2014 (11:30 IST)   at Sharjah

India tour of Australia 2014, Practice matches

Nov 28, 2014 (05:29 IST)   at Adelaide

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 28, 2014 (12:00 IST)   at Dhaka

England tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 29, 2014 (10:00 IST)   at Colombo

More

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 26, 2014  at Dhaka

Bangladesh won by 124 runs

England tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 26, 2014  at Colombo

Sri Lanka won by 25 runs

Hong Kong tour of Sri Lanka, 2014

Nov 24, 2014  at Colombo

Hong Kong won by 2 wkts

Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh, 2014

Nov 23, 2014  at Chittagong

Bangladesh won by 68 runs

South Africa tour of Australia, 2014

Nov 23, 2014  at Sydney

Australia won by 2 wickets (D/L method)

Photos

Phil Hughes suffers head injury: In photos

Videos

AB de Villiers: Disappointed with defeat in Australia

Daniel Vettori becomes the most capped New Zealand player

Quinton de Kock equals record for most centuries before the age of 22

Wriddhiman Saha’s performance in the 1st Test at Brisbane could make or break his career

England tour of Sri Lanka 2014: Stats overview of past encounters

Pakistan vs New Zealand 2014: New Zealand’s inspired performance in 2nd Test serves important lesson to non-Asian countries

Australia Australia vs South Africa 2014 Bangladesh Bangladesh vs Zimbabwe Bangladesh vs Zimbabwe 2014 England India India tour of Australia 2014-15 South Africa South Africa tour of Australia 2014 Sri Lanka Zimbabwe Zimbabwe tour of Bangladesh 2014 Zimbabwe vs Bangladesh Zimbabwe vs Bangladesh 2014

Jacques Kallis to make his debut as caddy

Moeen Ali, Ravi Bopara’s efforts go in vain as Sri Lanka trump England by 25 runs in 1st ODI

West Indies tour of South Africa 2014-15: Sheldon Cottrell ready for return

Phil Hughes’ injury asks for review of safety factor in cricket equipment, feels Jagmohan Dalmiya

Shikha Pandey shines in India Women’s win over South Africa

Daniel Vettori becomes the most capped New Zealand player

Quinton de Kock equals record for most centuries before the age of 22

Wriddhiman Saha’s performance in the 1st Test at Brisbane could make or break his career

England tour of Sri Lanka 2014: Stats overview of past encounters

Pakistan vs New Zealand 2014: New Zealand’s inspired performance in 2nd Test serves important lesson to non-Asian countries

Fan of the Day

Niharika Shah

Niharika Shah

682 Posts | 6 Fans

Video: Phil Hughes suffers head injury, collapses on field during New South Wales vs South Australia tie

Bigg Boss: Hot Pakistani model Veena Malik and husband arrested on blasphemy charges

மணப்பெண் அழகு சரிபார்ப்பு பட்டியல் – உங்கள் திருமணத்திற்கு ஒரு மாதத்திற்கு முன் என்ன செய்ய வேண்டும்

Bigg Boss 8: Is Gautam Gulati out of the house?

More broadband connections to boost GDP growth in Asia Pacific: GSMA

Scoop: Is Sid Mallya really gay? Watch video to find out!

Microsoft Lumia 535: First non-Nokia low budget Windows smartphone set to be launched today

रितेश-जेनेलिया देशमुख के घर पुत्ररत्न का हुआ जन्म

India is becoming our largest overseas market, Xiaomi CEO Lei Jun says

Also on cricketcountry.com

Play Fantasy Cricket & Win

Cash Daily! Click here