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When Cricket Still Had Foul Ground?
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"We may see how the game was played about this time from the picture, of date 1743, in the possession of the Surrey County Club. The wicket was a 'skeleton hurdle,' one foot high and two feet wide, consisting of two stumps only, with a third laid across. The bat was curved at the end, and made for free hitting rather than defence. The bowling was all along the ground, and the great art was to bowl under the bat. All play was forward of the wicket, as it is now in single wicket games of less that five players a side. With these exceptions, the game was very much the same as it is today ."
Robert MacGregor, Pastimes and Players (Chatto and Windus, London, 1881), page 16. Note that the circular hole, described in #1730.1, is not seen. Caveat: It is not clear from this account whether forward hitting was common in the 1740s or whether MacGregor is simply drawing inferences about this single painting.
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