July 7, 2012

English cricket

Cricketing connections of Arthur Conan Doyle

Abhishek Mukherjee

Arunabha Sengupta, writing in cricketcountry.com, explores the cricketing connections of Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, the author of Sherlock Holmes stories.

The cricketing connection of the great writer, who passed away on this day 82 years ago, was not limited just to names of characters. Sir Arthur was a First-Class cricketer of some ability. Wisden observes in his obituary: “While never a famous cricketer, he could hit hard and bowl slows with puzzling flight. For MCC v Cambridgeshire at Lord's, in 1899, he took seven wickets for 61 runs, and on the same ground two years later carried out his bat for 32 against Leicestershire, who had Woodcock, Geeson and King to bowl for them.”
Cricket did feature in some of Conan Doyle’s other writings – even if they did not attain the stratospheric levels of fame as his Holmes tales. In one of his Brigadier Gerard stories, Conan Doyle describes a French officer’s rather calamitous efforts at the game as a prisoner of war.

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