LONDON: Two of English cricket’s oldest fixtures, Oxford vs Cambridge and Eton vs Harrow will no for a longer period be staged each year at Lord’s immediately after this 12 months, ending a tradition stretching back 200 a long time and which after relished the sight of poet Lord Byron strolling to the crease.
Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC), which owns ‘the house of cricket’, mentioned the two matches would take position in late June but included they “will no extended be played as standard once-a-year fixtures at Lord’s immediately after 2022”.
The club, usually portrayed by its critics as elitist, explained the determination had been taken in purchase to “further MCC’s objective to broaden the scope of the fixture listing” and give “a wider range of players” the likelihood to perform at Lord’s.
Oxford and Cambridge, England‘s two oldest universities, have played annually at Lord’s since 1851, with the exception of the years of the two Globe Wars and the initial calendar year of the Covid-19 pandemic.
They played men’s very first-class fixtures right up until 2000 and a men’s limited-overs fixture right until 2021.
Last calendar year, the Stump Out Sexism marketing campaign was launched by a previous Oxford captain, Vanessa Picker, in protest that Lord’s experienced in no way staged a women’s fixture between the universities.
MCC have been unwilling to stage into what they noticed as a selection for the universities.
But replying to a ask for from the marketing campaign to uncover an “equitable remedy”, MCC main executive, Male Lavender, wrote in a letter that Lord’s would be “really joyful to accommodate a men’s and women’s T20 double header on the very same working day up coming 12 months”.
This 12 months Oxford and Cambridge will play a T20 double-header on June 27, while the women’s match could now be the initial and very last amongst the two universities played on the major sq. at Lord’s.
Eton and Harrow, two of England’s oldest and most exclusive charge-shelling out educational institutions, have played just about every other at Lord’s considering that the early 19th century, with the poet George Byron taking portion in the inaugural 1805 edition.
Henry Blofeld, the cricket commentator who has performed in both fixtures — he was a schoolboy at Eton and a pupil at Cambridge — advised The Periods: “I suppose the ‘antis’ will be cheering and old farts like me will be unhappy. It is inevitable with the way that modern society has moved.”
Although the universities have produced various former England captains, which includes Colin Cowdrey and Mike Smith (Oxford) and Mike Brearley and Mike Atherton (Cambridge), they no for a longer time have very first-class cricket status.
The Varisty match, as the fixture in between Oxford and Cambridge is identified, utilised to be performed about three days.
But the Lord’s version of the match was reduced to a one-day video game in 2001, with a four-working day recreation involving the universities alternating concerning Fenner’s in Cambridge and the Parks in Oxford.
After a spotlight of the English summertime social time, the match among Eton and Harrow the moment attracted tens of hundreds of supporters but crowds have declined significantly in new decades.


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