The earliest reference to cricket in the county dates from the 1790s. An embryo county organisation existed in the 1820s and a County club was initially founded in 1861. It went out of existence briefly in 1897 but was re-formed on 26th November 1899, and joined the Minor Counties’ Championship in 1901. At present twenty Minor Counties participate in two competitions.
Devon was the scene of a county club’s foundation on 18 August 1875, but not its own! Somerset County Cricket Club was set up by some Somerset Gentlemen players at a meeting at Sidmouth CC, immediately after a match against the Gentlemen of Devon.
An application was made for first-class status and entry to the County Championship in 1948, however the County was turned down. Devon has won the Minor Counties Championship eight times, one of them shared. It first won in 1978 and then under the captaincy of Peter Roebuck it won for four consecutive years from 1994 to 1997, a record for the competition. There was a shared title with Bedfordshire in 2004, another success in 2006 and the most recent achievement was victory against Cambridgeshire in the Championship final at March in September 2011.
Devon has won the MCCA Knockout Trophy five times since its inception in 1983. It won in 1992, 1994, 1998, 2008 and 2014.
The county first played List A cricket in the 1969 Gillette Cup against Hertfordshire and appeared in 33 List A matches from 1969 to 2005, winning seven and losing 26, the majority of which were against first-class opponents. The county claimed a first-class scalp once, defeating Leicestershire in the 2004 Cheltenham & Gloucester Trophy. The right to play List A cricket was lost in 2006 when the Minor Counties were excluded from the Cheltenham & Gloucester Trophy from that onward.
The Devon Lion
The County’s heraldic badge is a pale blue lions with a red tongue, and is taken from the coat of arms of the Earls of Devon, who inherited it from the de Redvers family in the fourteenth century. The original badge is quartered with rampant lions in the top right and bottom left, with three red circles in the adjacent segments. They look a little like cricket balls, but are in fact representations of drops of blood, indicating the military sacrifice over time of the family.
Devon CCC was given permission by the Earl of Devon to adopt the rampant blue lion with a red tongue, and its capped players are awarded a blazer and cap featuring a light blue rampant lion.
Devon Colours are Navy Blue, Sky Blue, Gold, and Black.