The term ‘one-day cricket’ is a metaphor. In a literal sense, one-day cricket is commonplace and as old as the game itself; indeed most recreational cricketers have, as players, known no other kind. More importantly, one-day cricket has historically characterised the northern leagues, vital signifiers of class and region in the culture of the English game, not to mention women’s cricket, which had flourished in several countries between the World Wars. 2 However, in the decades that followed the Second World War the term ‘one-day cricket’ had a more specific meaning and a greater import. It referred to cricket matches that would be limited not only by time, but by structure (a specified number of overs), thus taking a crucial aspect of the encounter beyond the control of the two team captains, and it meant that the contest would, by the end of the day, have produced a winner: honours could no longer be even. It also meant a challenge to the prevailing economic order of cricket and to its traditional pattern of governance. This chapter explores these issues historically. It will argue that a number of factors contributed to the entrenchment of one-day cricket, initially in England, in the 1960s. These included: the relative decline in financial and political power of the British aristocracy; a corresponding fall in the annual revenue of the English county cricket clubs; the growth in influence in ruling circles of the elites of what the American sociologist Alvin Gouldner called ‘impression management’; 3 the politicisation and enhanced bargaining power of professional county cricketers; material changes in the consumer market for cigarettes; and what can be assumed to have been new attitudes to leisure and sport on the part of sections of the English public.