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Match Report
Derek Scott

Of the team originally selected for this match Ross, Harrington, Andrews and Adair cried off and they were replaced by Stuart, French, Mitchell and Crawford. Initially DR Taylor was to have taken Andrews' place but he was unable to do so. It must be assumed that GJ Meldon was not available. He had scored a century against London County for Dublin University after the Irish team had been selected. If he was available, he would surely have come on as a substitute. A trial match entitled "Dublin University against Rest of Ireland" at College Park was played before the team was originally chosen.

Two days were not enough for this game which ended in a draw. The London County team included the great WG Grace, then almost 55 years of age, WL Murdoch, the former Australian captain was then 48 years of age, JWHT Douglas, who was later to captain England, and LOS Poidevin, who had just come from Australia and played with great success for Lancashire some years later. The fact that Ross and Harrington were unable to play for Ireland was a sore blow. Previously London County had played Dublin University at College Park. The match ended in a high-scoring draw with Poidevin and GJ Meldon each scoring a century.

The first day was rather even, London County scoring 237 to Ireland's 177-5. The weather was very good and there was a large attendance. Grace won the toss and he and Murdoch began the innings. Lambert and French bowled. Grace was caught by Mitchell at mid-off off a hard drive from Lambert. He had made only a single. Murdoch made 26 out of 38 and was then caught at slip by French, also off Lambert. W. Smith and Poidevin were now together and the runs were mounting very quickly. Kelly had come on and at 74 he bowled Smith who had hit freely for his 34. With Douglas in the 100 went up in 80 minutes. Douglas was almost run out soon after. At 120 Lambert came off after bowling since the start. No relief came to Ireland's rescue and at lunch the score was 176-3 with Poidevin 73 and Douglas 35. Crawford began to bowl after lunch and his second ball had Poidevin caught smartly by French at slip. His 73 was chanceless and included 10 fours. The partnership for this fourth wicket had added 102. Gale came in but was soon brilliantly caught by SD Lambert one-handed low down at short slip off French. 179-5-3. Douglas and Major Fleming sent up 200 shortly before 3.30, the result of 165 minutes play. With four more added Fleming was bowled by RH Lambert for 15. At 222 Crawford came on again and at once had both Covell and Douglas out. Both were caught in the out field by Stuart. Douglas's 53 was very sound. 13 runs later SD Lambert made another outfield catch off Crawford to dismiss Bell. 235-9-5. At 237 Greenway was caught off R.H. Lambert and the innings was over. Crawford was the best bowler with 4-36 in 10 overs. He might have been used more.

Grace and Greenway (the only professional with London County) began the bowling to SD Lambert and SC Smith. Grace's second ball bowled Lambert for 0. Stuart came in and Smith hit a six and three fours in two overs before being stumped off Grace 19. 23-2-19. RH Lambert came in and scored rapidly off both bowlers, Grace being the chief sufferer, but at 64 he was caught by Poidevin in the slips off Greenway. He had made 37 out of 41 added with Stuart for the third wicket. FH Browning was next and, as usual, he battled delightfully. At 80 Bell and Douglas came on to bowl. 100 went up in 90 minutes. Browning gave a chance when he was 38. The score rose and Greenway came back on at 157. One run later he bowled Browning for 60. This was made in his prettiest style and he hit a six and 10 fours. Again Stuart had been the "sleeping partner" and Browning had made 60 out of 94 for this fourth wicket. At 164 AD Comyn was caught by Poidevin at slip off the first ball he faced. It was from Greenway. Sir TC O'Brien, the captain, played out time with Stuart. Stuart had been in 2 hours for his 39 not out while O'Brien was seven not out. The score was 177-5.

Douglas and Greenway bowled when play resumed at 11.50 a.m. on the second day. Both batsmen played very well and the score was only three short of the London County total when Stuart was LBW trying to turn Grace to leg. Stuart's 55 had taken three hours but it was a very invaluable knock. He and O'Brien had put on 70 for the sixth wicket. Kelly was next and before he had scored he was missed by Douglas, a caught and bowled chance, and by Murdoch at mid-off, off successive balls. Shortly after Smith dropped him at third man, a charmed life! Next ball O'Brien was caught at point by Douglas off Grace for 51. This included nine fours. 250-7-51. C. G. Mitchell came next but he lost Kelly, bowled Douglas for 12, at 253. Crawford played on to Douglas at 269. Mitchell and French added 22 for the last wicket. At 291 Douglas bowled French 12. Mitchell was 16 not out. Douglas took 4-80 in 26 overs.

At 1.15 p.m. London County began their second innings with a deficit of 54. Lambert and French bowled to Gale and Smith. French's first ball got Smith for three. Brewer was next and at lunch the score was 32-1. After lunch Kelly replaced Lambert. At 42 Brewer was caught at point off French for 20. Douglas was next but at 53 Gale was bowled by Kelly for 23. Murdoch skied a few before Stuart caught him off French for eight. Poidevin was caught at the wicket off Kelly for 0. 73-5. If Ireland could dismiss the remainder of the visitors quickly they now had a good chance to win. But Grace was next. He hit three fours early on, saw up the hundred, and then the wicket began to kick a little. Lambert replaced French. Grace was out to a smart catch by Comyn off Kelly at 104. He had made 24 out of 31 added for the sixth wicket with Douglas. Covell was next and he and Douglas held up the Irish attack while another 39 runs were added. Finally, the patient Douglas was stumped off Crawford for 44. Fleming made all the 12 runs added for the eighth wicket and was then caught at the wicket off Crawford. Still Ireland had a chance but the last two wickets were allowed to add 38 runs. Pavel and Bell added 21 for the ninth wicket. Coverdale was then bowled off his pads by French for a very good 35. At 193 Greenway was magnificently caught by Mitchell off Lambert. French's 4-39 in 19 overs was good bowling.

Ireland had only 45 minutes batting time to get 140. In that 45 minutes they lost five wickets for 42 runs. R.H.Lambert was caught off Greenway for 0 while Smith was LBW to Douglas for six. Mitchell and Browning hit hard but at 26 Mitchell played on to Douglas for seven. Stuart came in and at 30 Browning was caught by Poidevin off Greenway 12. O'Brien was caught by Smith in the outfield off Greenway for eight. Stuart and Kelly then played out time. Stuart had, in fact, not played for Ireland for 11 years.

The Mardyke