BATSMAN OF THE YEAR - 1893

Lionel Palairet

MR. LIONEL CHARLES HAMILTON PALAIRET is a Somerset man by close associations, but by birth he belongs to Lancashire, having been born at Grange-over-Sands in that county on May 27, 1870. Though now less than twenty-three years of age, Palairet has served a long apprenticeship to cricket. In 1880 he was a member of the eleven at the Rev. S. Cornish's School at Walton Lodge, Clevedon, and on leaving there in 1884 he proceeded to Repton School. He gained his colours at Repton in 1886, and remained in the eleven for the three following seasons, being captain of the team in 1888 and 1889. During all this time his powers as a cricketer were gradually ripening, and in his last year at school he had a very fine record, averaging more than 29 runs per innings, and taking 56 wickets for a little over 12½ runs each. Going up to Oxford in October, 1889, he got into the University eleven in his first season, one of his best innings being 72 at Lord's against the M.C.C. and Ground. In a match of small scores, on a bad wicket, he only made 0 and 17 against Cambridge, but his record for Oxford was by no means bad -- 285 runs in fifteen innings, with an average of 19. In 1891 he was even less successful in the University match, being got rid of for 2 and 11, and in Oxford matches generally he came out with the modest average of 15.11. For Somerset, however, he batted in very different style, scoring 560 runs in ten matches, with an average of 31. This form was good enough to prove that he had first-class abilities as a batsman, and in 1892, as everyone knows, he had a most brilliant season. Though somewhat overshadowed by his captain, H. T. Hewett, he averaged 32 for Somerset, and in first-class matches he could show the splendid aggregate of 1,343 runs, with a average of 31.41. Moreover, he had the great satisfaction of leading the Oxford eleven to victory at Lord's, and coming out for his University with the excellent record of 509 runs and an average of 36.5. He has been re-elected captain at Oxford for 1893, and given a continuance of good health, there can be little doubt that even greater distinction awaits him in the cricket world. He has almost every good quality as a batsman, combining strong defence with fine hitting, and playing always in beautiful style. Indeed, among the young cricketers of the day there is no one better worth looking at. His father, an enthusiastic supporter of the game, spared no pains in securing him the best coaching, and we believe we are correct in saying that he owes a good deal to the valuable practice he obtained against Attewell and Martin.

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