Francis Joseph SHACKLOCK – cricketer

Francis Joseph SHACKLOCK was born at Crich 22 Sept 1861.

His parents, Francis and Mary SHACKLOCK, who came from Kirkby in Ashfield Notts, were living on Crich Common in 1861.

The family returned to Nottinghamshire in 1867 which meant he could qualify to play cricket for Notts.
He was a right-hand batsman and right-arm fast bowler.

On 13 September1883 he played against the MCC and took a wicket in the first innings, four in the second but did not score a run. Playing against Somerset in 1893, he took four wickets in four successive balls.

In 1884, not considered good enough by the committee of Notts to play for them he joined Derbyshire, his birth county, where he played with them for two seasons.

In 1886 he returned to play for Notts, where he had lived most of his life and where he began his cricketing career.

Francis Joseph SHACKLOCK emigrated to New Zealand on 8th October 1903, aged 43; sailing on the SS Papanui,. On his emigration listing he said he was a professional cricketer.
He then coached in Auckland also playing and coaching in Otago. His final first class match was on 3rd March 1905 for Otago against Australia.

He enlisted in the New Zealand military forces on 19th January1919 – his stated profession was lace maker and professional cricketer,

He died at Christchurch on 1st May 1937 and was buried in Bromley Cemetery, Christchurch.

[with thanks to Prunella Bradshaw]

Controversy over which county he was entitled to represent

In the newspapers there was much discussion on his playing eligibility; he became a cricketer of some renown. He was born at Crich but the family moved to Nottinghamshire when he was aged six and learnt to play cricket in Nottinghamshire. In 1884, because he was not selected to play for Nottinghamshire, he played two seasons for Derbyshire. Later he was invited to play for Nottinghamshire which he did but his entitlement was disputed by Derbyshire. SHACKLOCK’s response was reported in a long newspaper article –

Derby Mercury 7 April 1886
[an extract...]
My only reason for playing for Derbyshire in 1884 was that I was not considered good enough by the committee of Notts to play for them – for surely it cannot be supposed for a moment that any cricketer having a qualification to play for these two counties would choice select Derbyshire. I have worked hard during last season, and I think it is a fair argument to use – that if I have now been able to obtain a place in the Notts Eleven, Derbyshire has reaped the benefit of my exertions as well as myself, and I confidently leave the whole matter for decision of the M.C.C. or any other body of independent gentlemen.

There was much more reporting and correspondence over this issue.

Wikepedia has quite an interesting article on him:

Francis Joseph Shacklock (22 September 1861 – 1 May 1937) was an English cricketer who played first-class cricket for Nottinghamshire in 1883 and between 1886 and 1893, for Derbyshire in 1884 and 1885, for MCC between 1889 and 1893 and for Otago in New Zealand from 1903 to 1905. Shacklock may have been the inspiration for the naming of Arthur Conan Doyle's character Sherlock Holmes.

Shacklock was born at Crich, Derbyshire, and by 1881 was a professional cricketer living in Kirkby in Ashfield, Nottinghamshire. He made his first-class debut for Nottinghamshire in September 1883 against MCC when he took a wicket in the first innings and four in the second innings but failed to score a run.

Shacklock joined Derbyshire in the 1884 season and played regularly. In the 1885 season against Yorkshire in August he took 8 for 45 in the first innings, and 5 for 87 in the second innings of the same match. He shared the top wicket tally for the season with William Cropper. Shacklock took 59 wickets for Derbyshire at an average of 16.74 and a best performance of 8 for 45.

In 1886 Shacklock rejoined Nottinghamshire and played 117 matches for them over the next eight years. For Nottinghamshire he took 360 wickets at an average of 18.74 and a best performance of 8 for 32. After 1889 Shacklock played for the MCC against the universities and also for sides selected by Nottinghamshire wicketkeeper Mordecai Sherwin.

In 1903 Shacklock moved to New Zealand where he coached in Dunedin and played for Otago. He remained in New Zealand and moved to Christchurch, where he was the principal coach to the Canterbury Cricket Association in the early 1920s. He died in Christchurch in 1937.

The name of Arthur Conan Doyle's most famous character, Sherlock Holmes, is said to have been inspired by the combination of Shacklock and Sherwin. His fellow fast bowler at Derbyshire was William Mycroft and the pair Shacklock and Mycroft were prominent in a match against MCC at Lord's in June 1885. Conan Doyle, who was an active MCC member, published his first Sherlock Holmes story two years later. Holmes' brother in the stories was named Mycroft.

During 1919, when in New Zealand, he voluntary enlisted in the N.Z. Army Ordnance Corps aged 57. His Army record in on the complimentary Crich parish WW1 site: Frank Joseph SHACKLOCK

Derby Daily Telegraph 4 May 1937
News has been received from Christchurch, New Zealand, of the death of Frank Shacklock, who in his County Cricket days in England accomplished some wonderful bowling performances. He was born at Crich 75 years ago, by virtue of which he played for Derbyshire for a couple of seasons.
[there followed a brief obituary]