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Cork Cricket Club

A Look Back: Reflecting on the 125th Anniversary

In 1999, Cork County Cricket Club celebrated a monumental year – the club’s 125th anniversary, alongside the 150th anniversary of both the Cork City Club (County’s predecessor) and cricket at the Mardyke Cricket Ground. This article, published then, provides a fascinating glimpse into the club’s rich history.

A Ground Steeped in History

The Mardyke emerges as a central character in the story. Cricket has graced its grounds since 1849, witnessing legendary names like W.G. Grace and W.G. Murdoch, and later stars like Duleepsinhji and Sir Learie Constantine. The article also mentions the final, rain-affected match of 1999 against Mark Alleyne’s Gloucestershire XI, a reminder of the ongoing cricketing legacy.

Opening batsman Graham Gooch pictured prior to the Irish Examiner sponsored exhibition match against Cork County at the Mardyke,Cork. (Picture Dan LInehan)

Beyond Cricket: A Stage for History

The Mardyke wasn’t just about cricket. It hosted the first international lacrosse match in Ireland (1903) and witnessed advancements in cycling technology with the first pneumatic tire used in a race. The ground also holds significance during historical events, with the presence of the 17th Lancers and the 16th Irish Division leaving their mark.

A Legacy of Players and Personalities

The article highlights several notable figures associated with the club. Four test cricketers – Leland Hone, Sir Tim O’Brien, Charlie Hallows, and Doug Wright – donned the Cork County colors. Additionally, interesting personalities like George Berkeley (inventor of the follow-on rule), Dyer (of the Amritsar massacre), and W.P. Lloyd (Victoria Cross recipient) add unique chapters to the club’s story.

Celebrating the Past, Embracing the Future

The 1999 celebrations included two commemorative books, delving deep into the history of cricket in Cork. This dedication to preserving the past continues today. As we celebrate our 150th anniversary in 2024, we look back with pride on the rich tapestry woven by players, administrators, and supporters. The legacy of the Mardyke and the incredible stories it holds inspire us to continue this remarkable journey.

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