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Ireland International Matches Database
Match Report
Derek Scott

This was the 4th match v MCC and all had been held at Lords. Ireland recorded her third win and the other match (in 1867) had been abandoned after only a few overs. MCC fielded three professionals but Hunt's bowling in the first MCC innings laid the foundations of victory. Hunt played regularly in Cork but this was his only game for Ireland for some unknown reason. TJS Casey, W Hone Snr., AJ McNeile, Viscount Massereene also crossed over from Ireland for the game but the others played little cricket in Ireland. Notable among these were JH Ponsonby, a son of the Hon. Spencer Ponsonby who for many years played for MCC and I Zingari. Ponsonby played for Harrow v Eton in 1864 and was an effective lob bowler and an excellent wicket-keeper. HH Montgomery in this match became the first player to bat through an innings for Ireland. He, too, played for Harrow v Eton in 1864 and later became Bishop of Tasmania. He was born in India and was a hard hitter. AH Smith-Barry was later MP for Cork and often played for Cheshire. Viscount Massereene apparently took no part in the game as he was "absent" in both innings - it was the only "game" the North of Ireland player played for Ireland.

For MCC there appeared HW Fellows who, as a bowler, played for I Zingari in Ireland in 1860-61 and 1863, and also for MCC v Ireland in 1862. He did not bowl at all in this match. Captain Eccles was also to play for I Zingari in Ireland in 1876. For 8 of the Irish players this was their last game and for 6 of them it was their only game. Only TJS Casey, W Hone Snr. and AG Meldon played again.

The first day's play ended at 2 00 pm due to rain. In the morning Ireland made 82 for 3, Montgomery being 31 not out and McNeile 8 not out. Mumford, Smyth and Morton took a wicket each. JH Ponsonby made 9, Casey 16 and Hone was bowled for 0.

The second day was very hot and the wicket was hard. Nixon and Marten quickly dismissed the remaining batsmen and Ireland was all out for 100, Massereene being absent. The six remaining wickets had fallen for a further 18 runs. Of these Montgomery scored a further 6 and was 37 not out at the end. MCC in reply got to 50 for 5 but lost their last 5 wickets for a further 29. Hunt bowled through the innings taking 7 for 17 in 23 overs. The young MCC players did not do very well but E Tredcroft reached 23 and Fellows made 20. In fact Tredcroft played in this match under the alias of E Thompson.

In Ireland's second innings W Hone Snr. (26) and Hunt (22) made 58 out of 108 scored. McNeile and Smith-Barry made useful contributions and at 5 30 pm MCC went in to bat to make 130 to win. W.Hone Snr., who rarely bowled, got both the opening batsmen (R Forster and Mumford) for 0 and three were down for 7. MCC never recovered and were all out for 54 shortly before 7 00 pm. Hunt again bowled through the innings - 19 overs but only took 1 wicket. Hone took 4 for 20 and McNeile, with very slow underhand lobs demolished the tail. Immediately prior to this game W Hone Snr. had played for MCC v England. After the MCC v Ireland game The Times commented that "to snatch a laurel from the cr&ecaute;me de la cr&ecaute;me of cricket is calculated to place Irish cricket in a foremost position."