BATSMAN OF THE YEAR - 1890

Billy Gunn

WILLIAM GUNN, emphatically the most successful batsman of 1889, was born on the 4th of December, 1858, and is consequently in his 32nd year. He first appeared in the Nottingham eleven in 1880, and, though his efforts in a dozen matches for the county that season only resulted in an average of 10, it was yet evident from the outset that a batsman of more than ordinary promise had been discovered. How abundantly that early promise has been fulfilled readers today will not need to be told. Like all other cricketers he has been far more successful in some seasons than others, but on the whole his career has been one of steady progress, and the summer of 1889 found him in a higher position than he had ever occupied before. In the exhaustive record of the season's doings which will be found further on in WISDEN'S ALMANACK, all his performances will be found fully set out, so it is only necessary to say here that he started the summer in his best form, and, allowing for the difference in the wickets after the month of July, maintained his high standard till the last important match had been played. Gunn must stand about 6 ft. 2 in. or 6 ft. 3 in., and we think we are correct in saying that no batsman of the same height has ever played in more elegant and perfect form. Certainly we know no professional at the present day whom it is a greater pleasure to watch. Even before he rose to his present fame as a batsman, Gunn was one of the most brilliant fields in the country, and it is the general opinion of practical cricketers that in the long field and at third he has never had a superior. Gunn was a member of Shaw and Shrewsbury"s Team in Australia during the season of 1886-87, and averaged 21.8 in eleven-a-side matches, and 20.7 in all matches. He was not a member of either of the English teams that went out to the Colonies in the season of 1887-88. For several years Gunn was one of the most brilliant forwards in the country at Association football, but latterly he has given up the game, reserving himself entirely for cricket. He is a partner in a cricket outfitter's business in Nottingham.

© John Wisden & Co