The early years
[ St Albans Centennial Book (1905-2005) ]
For several years the quest for a suburban home base occupied the minds of club officials. St Albans Park and Elmwood Park were considered, and there were negotiations with the St Albans Hockey Club and Edgeware Bowling Club. The debate lapsed about 1911 when it was pointed out a transfer from Hagley would financially embarrass the other clubs playing there.
In the light of what became reality many years later, it is interesting to note a meeting was called in 1907 to investigate the formation of a St Albans Ladies Cricket Club. Women would be eligible for membership and allowed to use the club's materials and practice pitches. Nothing came of it.
Representative selections were soon coming the way of St Albans players. Reece and Ollivier were already established in Canterbury teams in the pre-district cricket era, and were followed by H A Bishop, C A Cuff, B B Wood, E E Crawshaw, D M Sandman, R G Hickmott, J S Barrett, and L R Brunton leading up to World War I.
Famous Australian cricketer Victor Trumper, who owned a sports shop in Sydney, provided the sample of the original St Albans blazers and caps after suitable materials had not been available in Christchurch.
St Albans won its first senior championship in 1909/10, rising from last the previous summer. Don Sandman captured 64 wickets and Wood contributed the first double century with 201 against Riccarton.
The title was retained in 1910/11, after a play-off with Sydenham was won on the first innings. Sandman took 84 wickets in the season, still a St Albans record today. He was also a century-maker, along with Crawshaw and Reese.
Sandman had become the club's first New Zealand representative, in 1909, and extended his international career through to 1921.