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Full name Samuel Biddulph
Born December 23, 1840, Hyson Green, Nottingham
Died March 7, 1876, Nottingham (aged 35 years 75 days)
Major teams Nottinghamshire
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm medium (roundarm)
Fielding position Wicketkeeper
Nottinghamshire Cricket Matches by A.K.Sutton said "Samuel Biddulph is the noted stumper for the County XI and for quickness of sight, execution and indomitable courage, perhaps stands second to but few in the cricketing world. He receives the ball from the field most masterly and no matter at what speed if well put in, and the chance is there, he is safe in putting down the stumps with an effect the most electric". He was described by Lillywhite's Cricketers' Companion as "A merry batsman against moderate bowling, often hitting up a long score at the close of an innings."
Biddulph is recorded as first playing for his native village in a match in 1858, but the first important match he took part in was for The Next XXII v the Nottingham First XI in 1861 - a match played for the benefit of George Butler. 1862 saw his debut for Nottinghamshire - against XXII Colts on April 21, 22. This was followed by a match for Eleven Professionals Who Have Never Played At Lord's against MCC on June 2, 3. His next match, on June 6, 7 was for Nottinghamshire against Cambridgeshire. Later in the season, he played for Players v Gentlemen at Lord's. Curiously, this was his only appearance for the Players in his career. He played regularly for Nottinghamshire until 1875.
He was a professional for the MCC at Lord's from 1863 until his death, playing many matches for the Club. He took part in most of the North v South matches of the period and appeared for the All England Eleven against XXII of Yorkshire in 1862 at Barnsley. It was in this match that he had the "distinction" of batting twice in the second innings - the second time as substitute for G.Parr. In 1866 he played nine matches for the United All England Eleven, another of the professional elevens of the time. He umpired many matches, including the University match of 1873 and three Players v Gentlemen matches. He lived in Great Alfred Street North, Nottingham and then at 13 Mornington Street, Nottingham. His height was given as 5ft 6in and his weight variously between 9st 9lb and 11st. He was employed in Nottingham as a lacemaker. Part way through the 1875 season he was forced to retire through ill health and he died of a disease of the kidneys early in 1876 and was buried at the General Cemetary, Nottingham.
On September 15, 16, 1876, a benefit match was played for his widow and children. Nottinghamshire played MCC, and the players all gave their services free.
Copyright © Peter Griffiths, 2002.
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