September 05, 1826, Brighton, Sussex
April 05, 1884, Westminster, London, (aged 57y 213d)
Right hand bat
John Wisden was, according to Fuller Pilch the finest allrounder of his day. Although a small man, under 5' 6" in height, he was for many years an excellent fast bowler, very accurate with an easy delivery. In later years although his pace diminished he was still one of the country's leading bowlers. He was a fine batsman with an extremely straight bat, excelling at the `draw' and leg hits.
Born at Brighton on September 5, 1826, he went, after the death of his father, to live with Tom Box under whose guidance Wisden's cricketing abilities soon developed. He made his debut for Sussex when only 18 years of age. His performances with both bat and ball were exceptional. The greatest feat of his career was when he clean bowled all ten wickets in the second innings of the South v. North game at Lord's in 1850. At the commencement of his career, and up to the time he reduced his pace, he averaged around ten wickets per match and
in the 38 matches he played in 1850 he captured 340 wickets. His two greatest batting performances were in 1849 when he scored 100 for Sussex against Kent and in 1855 when he scored 148 in the Sussex and Yorkshire match - the only century scored that season. He played for Clarke's All England XI in its early years. Later, on the formation of the United All England XI, he became, with James
Dean, their joint Secretary. In 1859, in conjunction with George Parr,
Wisden took a team of English cricketers to Canada and USA. Frequent attacks of rheumatism caused him to abandon the game after the 1863 season at the early age of 37. He launched, in 1864, the famous Wisden Cricketers' Almanack. He suffered greatly in the latter part of his life and died from cancer on April 5, 1884.
RJ Brown, The Cricketer
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