The Marylebone Cricket Club was founded in the year 1787 and is popularly known in the cricket world as MCC. This world most famous cricket club was founded as a private member’s club which was totally dedicated to the development of cricket. The club is situated at the Lord’s Cricket Ground near to the St. John’s Wood in North side of London.
Marylebone Cricket Club founded in 1787, was opened by Thomas Lord as his first ground on the site which is presently occupied by Dorset Square. The club adopted this land as their home venue. In fact, this club was the reconstitution of an older club which had its origins in early 18th century. This club was named formerly as the ‘Noblemen’s and Gentlemen’s Club’ or the ‘Cricket Club’.
Moreover, it was also used for social and gambling club purpose and various such sport connections like the London Cricket Club, Hambledon Club, Jockey Club, White Conduit Club and many prize fighting promotions. Whilst at a match at the White Conduit Fields, the members were not satisfied with the surroundings and asked Thomas for a more private venue near to London. Thomas, who was a professional bowler at the White Conduit club, opened his new ground, and the then Gentlemen’s Club got moved and initially got renamed as the Mary-le-bone Club.
Right from the beginning of the 20th century, this Club (MCC) had organized the England cricket team and the team had played here on their tours. It even includes the 1976-77 tour of Australia. The England touring team last wore the yellow and red stripes of the MCC whilst on their tour of New Zealand in 1996-97. The club’s color was initially sky blue for over a century after its foundation in 1787, but had to change the color for unconfirmed reasons.
This club has over 18,000 full members and over 4,000 associate members. These members enjoy special rights to use the Pavilion and its stands at Lord’s for any of the matches played at the ground. If a person wants to join this club, he or she must get the vote of three members, and also a sponsorship of a person on the list of MCC Sponsors. As the demand for its membership is more than the number of places obtainable each year, there are ways to lessen the period of becoming a full member.
One can either become a playing member or an out match member. There is also another alternative way of becoming a member of MCC. A person can be awarded honorary life membership, which is of course a rare honor to be granted to someone. Some of the present honorary life members of this club are Sunil Gavaskar, Andy Flower, David Shepherd, Alec Stewart and Sir Garfield Sobers.
The present MCC
MCC teams still continue to play in a regular basis, at first class level. This club has even produced its MCC coaching manual, has a training programme for young aspiring cricketers and a bible for traditional cricket playing skills. Known to tour around England, this club plays matches against many state and private schools. This tradition is being followed even today since the 19th century. What’s more, the club has its own real tennis and squash court too with active golf and bridge societies. Its super.