Little Bits of History

High Score

Posted in History by patriciahysell on June 27, 2014
AEJ Collins

AEJ Collins

June 27, 1899: AEJ Collins scores 628 runs not out in cricket. This is the highest ever recorded score in the game. Collins was 13 years old at the time and the score was accumulated over four days. He was born in India, where his father served as a judge in the Indian Civil Service. Both parents had died before he started school at Clifton College in September 1897. He played both rugby and cricket and received a bronze medal for boxing at the public school tournament in 1901. Collins was playing for Clarke’s House against North Town House and the teams were playing on an outfield which has since been renamed Collins Piece. The field was rough and in an unusual shape with a narrow field. Because of the oddity of field shape, the three short boundaries only counted for two runs.

The match began on Thursday, June 22 because there was a holiday while the college team played an annual match against Old Cliftonians nearby. Collins won the toss and chose to bat first with the game starting around 3.30 PM. When play ended at 6 PM, he had scored 200 runs. School lessons permitted another 2.5 hours of play on Friday and news of the boy’s achievement had reached the college audience who abandoned the older boys to watch young Collins. He ended the day with a score of 509 although it was misreported in the papers as 510 and his name was listed as AEG Collins. The play resumed on Monday during the lunch hour and he ended with a score of 598. On Tuesday, June 27, the school authorities permitted a longer playing time to attempt to finish the match. Play ended with Collins scoring 628 – 1 six, 4 fives, 31 fours, 33 threes, 146 twos, and 87 singles.

Despite all this, Collins never played professional sports. Instead he chose an army career and passed entrance exams to the Royal Military Academy which he entered in September 1901. He represented the Academy in both rugby and cricket and scored a century for them as well. He joined the British Army as a Second Lieutenant in the Royal Engineers in 1904. He continued to play sports for the military but never played first-class cricket. He was sent to France when World War I broke out and was killed in action on November 11, 1914 at the First Battle of Ypres having attained the rank of Captain.

Cricket is a bat and ball game played between two teams, each with 11 players. A rectangular 22-yard long pitch lies in the center of the field. Each team takes turn to bat and attempt to score runs while the other team fields. The bowler delivers the ball to the batsman who attempts to hit the ball away from the fielders so he can run to the other end of the pitch – which is counted as a run – without getting run out. Each batsman continues batting until he is out. The batting team continues batting until ten batsmen are out. There is always one “not out” batsman as the last one has no partner to bat with. The game has been played in England since the 16th century and she brought it to many of her colonies. In the mid 1800s, the first international match was held.

I hate losing and cricket being my first love, once I enter the ground it’s a different zone altogether and that hunger for winning is always there. – Sachin Tendulkar

To me, it doesn’t matter how good you are. Sport is all about playing and competing. Whatever you do in cricket and in sport, enjoy it, be positive and try to win. – Ian Botham

To me, cricket is a simple game. Keep it simple and just go out and play. – Shane Warne

I tend to think that cricket is the greatest thing that God ever created on earth – certainly greater than sex, although sex isn’t too bad either. – Harold Pinter

Also on this day: The Oscar of the Children’s Library – In 1922, the Newbery Medal was first awarded.
Collinswood – In 1966, Dark Shadows premiered.
ATM – In 1867. the world’s first ATM was installed.
Helen Keller –  In 1880, Helen was born.

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