Ohzat? Wisden breaks WG Grace’s first class record

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One of cricket’s oldest career records has been rewritten after the Wisden Cricketers Almanack decided to reduce the number of first-class hundreds scored by England WG Grace.

The Victorian-era sports star, widely considered the founder of modern batting, would have marked his 100th century for Gloucestershire against Somerset on May 17, 1895.

But Wisden, cricket’s ‘bible’ for more than 150 years, has now aligned itself with the Association of Cricket Statisticians and Historians (ACSH), which has long questioned the status of several ‘first class’ matches. disputed by Grace.

As a result, 10 matches were removed from Grace’s record, reducing her number of runs from 54,896 to 54,211, reducing her wickets from 2,876 to 2,809 and lowering her centuries from 126 to 124.

Now Wisden has ruled Grace’s one-hundredth came a fortnight when he also became the first man to complete 1,000 first-class runs before the end of May, one of eight cricketers to have achieved the feat.

The ACSH first persuaded Wisden to change Grace’s statistics in 1981, but its editor, then-Times cricket correspondent John Woodcock, reverted to the original recordings the following year, saying he preferred ” leave the figures of the great man as they were”. as long as anyone wants to remember it”.

But Wisden’s current editor, Lawrence Booth, told The Times: “Now is the time to accept that the Almanac should be more about records than romance.”

In another change, Jack Hobbs’ record tally of hundreds of first class was increased.

It had long been widely believed that the Surrey and England star, a cricketing giant of the early decades of the 20th century, had scored 197 centuries.

But Wisden has now decided that the two hundred he made towards the end of his career for Vizianagram’s Maharajkumar XI should also count as first-class, taking his tally to 199.

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