Colin de Grandhomme rewrites record books with stunning century on Hampshire first class debut - here are the other seven men who have achieved the feat

Colin de Grandhomme rewrote the record books today in his first Championship appearance.

Monday, 5th July 2021, 4:47 pm
John Crawley hit 272 on his Hampshire debut against Kent in 2002. Photo by Julian Herbert/Getty Images.
John Crawley hit 272 on his Hampshire debut against Kent in 2002. Photo by Julian Herbert/Getty Images.

The Kiwi all-rounder became only the eighth Hampshire player to score a century on his first class debut for the county, and the sixth in a Championship fixture.

His stunning unbeaten 173 against Surrey at The Ageas Bowl – a career best innings - is the second highest score on debut by a Hampshire player. It is only beaten by John Crawley’s 272 at Canterbury in 2002.

Here, The News recalls the previous seven batsmen to reach three figures.

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Cecil Abercrombie

June 1913

Abercrombie had already played three first-class games - one for the Army & Navy XI and two for just the Navy - by the time he made his Hampshire debut, aged 27, against Oxford University at the County Ground in Southampton.

On his first visit to the crease, he scored 126 before making 39 in the second innings of a drawn encounter.

Abercrombie had made his international rugby union debut for Scotland three years earlier, and went on to win six caps.

He was serving aboard HMS Defence at the Battle of Jutland in World War 1 in May 2016 when the ship was struck by German fire, exploded and sank with the loss of all men.

Dennis Baldry

May 1959

Baldry struck an unbeaten 151 in his maiden first class innings for Hampshire against Glamorgan at Burnaby Road, Portsmouth.

Aged 28, he had signed for Hampshire after five years playing for Middlesex - but after 88 innings without a century for his former county, his ton against Glamorgan was long overdue.

With Henry Horton hitting 94, Hampshire declared on 350-6 and then bowled their visitors out twice to win by an innings and nine runs.

Baldry went on to score two more centuries in his first 15 innings for the county - 123 against the MCC and 142 against Somerset. Somewhat remarkably, they would prove his only three first class hundreds in 242 innings spanning 10 years.

Richard Hayward

July 1981

Hayward scored an unbeaten 101 in his first first class innings for Hampshire in a tour match against Sri Lanka.

Then 27, he had made one previous first class appearance - for the Minor Counties against the touring Indians two years earlier. But on that occasion he didn’t bat in the first innings and was out for a duck in the second.

Hayward went on to make 13 first class appearances for Hampshire in 1981 and 1982. He later had a short spell with Somerset and played most of his 50 first class games in New Zealand.

John Crawley

April 2002

Signed from Lancashire, the England batsman made a sensational start to his Hampshire career with a huge 272 at Canterbury.

He hit 36 fours in a 576-minute stay at the crease as Hampshire replied to Kent’s 577-7 declared score with a monster 671 - Nick Johnson hitting 117.

Crawley’s innings was the fourth highest in Hampshire’s first class history at the time. It remains the seventh highest, with Crawley himself twice passing it - hitting 301 not out against Notts in 2004 and 311 not out against the same opponents the following year.

Shane Watson

June 2004

The Australian all-rounder followed up his first innings 24 with an unbeaten 112 in the second innings as Hampshire thrashed Somerset at The Ageas Bowl.

Watson, batting at No 7, struck 16 fours and a six and added 158 for the eighth wicket with Shaun Udal, who followed up a first innings 50 with 74 batting at No 10.

Watson would return for a second Hampshire stint in 2005, helping the county win the C & G Trophy and belting an unbeaten 203 in a Championship game against Warwickshire.

Andy Bichel

August 2005

The Australian all-rounder compiled arguably the most amazing of the eight centuries scored by Hampshire players on their first class debut for the county.

Hampshire were 81-7 were Bichel, batting at No 9, walked out to join Nic Pothas in a Championship game against Gloucestershire at Cheltenham.

The pair put on 257 for the eighth wicket - a new county record for that wicket which still remains to this day - with Bichel hitting 138 off 169 balls. He raced to his century off 104 balls, with 18 fours and a six. Pothas was finally out for 139.

John Crawley hit 120 in the second innings and Hampshire ended up winning by 178 runs in the season they finished runners-up to Nottinghamshire.

Ajinkya Rahane

May 2019

The Indian batsman followed up his first innings 10 with 119 as Hampshire celebrated the first-ever Championship game at Newclose on the Isle of Wight with a crushing 244-run victory over Nottinghamshire.

Rahane put on 254 for the third wicket with Sam Northeast (133) before Kyle Abbott, Keith Barker and Fidel Edwards all took three wickets as the visitors were bowled out for 194.

Rahane was to play seven Championship games for Hampshire that season, but only managed the one century and finished with a disappointing average of 23.61.