The cricket tradition in Hambledon is very strong and very old, and could be as old as that of our namesake on Broadhalfpenny Down.
In July of the year 1745, eleven maids of Surrey Hambledon, “dressed all in white” played a match against eleven maids of Bramley on Gosden Common, Bramley and defeated them by 127 notches to 119. This fact is known from a press report given in the Reading Mercury dated 16th. August 1745 which describes this as “the greatest match that was ever played in the south part of England” and comments on the unprecedented size of the crowd (of both sexes) which would suggest that cricket in Hambledon was not then confined to the gentler sex.
There is also a report in 1844 in the Hambledon Village School Log Book at the Surrey History Centre, that the Rector commanded that a large number of children absent from school on account of “a grand cricket match in the village” were to be punished.
The above would suggest that cricket has been played at Hambledon for at least 170 years. However, most probably cricket has been played in the village for over 260 years. Although there are old photographs and minute books going back to the early 1920’s there are no other older records to substantiate these claims.
To the present day, Hambledon Cricket Club is continuing to flourish, fielding 2 teams. A Senior XI League side competing in the local “Village Cricket League”, which Hambledon and other local villages helped to form in 1986. The club also fields a Senior XI non-league side most weekends playing friendly matches against other local sides.
In addition to the senior games, Hambledon CC has for the last 14 years organised training and coaching sessions for juniors of ages 7 to 15’s. Hambledon CC Juniors enter teams in the Berkeley Sports Two Counties Youth Cricket Competition and field four sides – under 9’s, under 11’s, under 13’s and under 15’s and have been very successful.