Wizened Wisden's Cricketers' Almanack leads book auction, next month

A great cricketer has reached a landmark today with Sachin Tendulkar smashing his fifth double century as he reached 203 before dismissal by Tillakaratne Dilshan's spin bowling. India have now posted 669-9 against Sri Lanka.

Coincidentally, Bloomsbury Auctions is just readying itself for a sale of rare books and ephemera in London, and will no doubt be hoping that the excitement of this series, not to mention England's series against Pakistan, which began today, will buoy their auction.

Of the 417 lots on offer, 82 relate directly to cricket and other sports and these include first editions of legendary batsman W G Grace's The Fight for the Ashes 1932-3 and Great Batsmen Their Methods at a Glance, which was co-authored by C B Fry.

The bulk of the section, however, is given over to editions of Wisden's Almanack. The book has produced an edition annually every year since its creation in 1864, making it the longest running sports annual in history.

Wisden Almanack 1873
Wisden's Almanack from 1873

When accomplished all-rounder John Wisden set it going, it was intended as a rival to Fred Lillywhite's The Guide to Cricketers and went on to become the most famous sports reference book in the world.

Most of the issues on offer are listed with three figure estimates, but one edition - of the relatively small proportion of those which were published during Wisden's lifetime is expected to bring at little more:

The tenth edition, which is rare and may be considered a good investment, comes with its original printed wrappers, the spine carefully restored and coloured to match original and no flaws except a very small tear at head of front cover at spine.

It is expected to sell for £3,000-4,000, though it might bring more. A broad selection of Wisdens sold for a stunning £90,000 last year at Bonhams. Bloomsbury's auction takes place on August 12 in London.


Join our readers in 186 countries around the world - sign up for your free weekly Collectibles Newsletter today

Featured products

Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Elvis Presley Authentic Strand of Hair
Sale price£399
In stock
Fidel Castro signed certificateFidel Castro Signed Certificate
Fidel Castro signed certificate
Sale price£2,995
In stock
King Henry VIII Autographed DocumentKing Henry VIII Autographed Document
King Henry VIII Autographed Document
Sale price£55,000
In stock