Full name Thomas White
Born 1740, Reigate, Surrey
Died July 28, 1831, Reigate, Surrey (aged 91 years)
Major teams Surrey
Batting style Right-hand bat
Thomas White played for Surrey between 1773 and 1778, but his lasting contribution to cricket came in 1771. Playing for Chertsey against Hambleon at Laleham Burway, White used a bat so wide that it completely obscured the stumps. The Hambledon players not unreasonably objected and a formal protest was made by Thomas Brett, as Hambledon's opening bowler; this was signed by himself, his captain Richard Nyren and master batsman John Small. The incident brought about a change in the Laws of Cricket wherein the maximum width of the bat was set at four-and-a-quarter inches.
There is much debate why White did this, but it is likely to have been to make a point to force a change in the Laws as the old-style hockey-stick-shaped bats had given way to more traditional flat bats, and at the time there was no restriction on their dimensions.
Many accounts attribute the use of the wide bat to "Shock" White of Brentford, but he was a different person and was not playing in the game concerned.