William Bullen (dates unknown) was an outstanding English cricketer throughout the last quarter of the 18th century. Hailing from Kent, Bullen was a great all-rounder, noted in the key sources as a fast bowler and a "powerful hitter".
He may have been a genuine debutant in the 1773 season, when he first appears in a scorecard. He played until the 1800 season, making 120 known first-class appearances. There is no doubt that he was one of the period’s most prolific players as well as one of the best.
In July 1774, playing for All-England v Hampshire at Sevenoaks Vine, Bullen became the first bowler known to have taken five wickets in an innings when he bowled five Hampshire batsmen in their first innings. These were "bowled" wickets only as bowlers at the time were not credited with wickets falling to catches.
Many consider it to be a pity that so little outside match reports is known of him, due to his great accomplishments.
- Fresh Light on 18th Century Cricket by G B Buckley (FL18)
- The Dawn of Cricket by H T Waghorn (WDC)
- Scores & Biographies, Volume 1 by Arthur Haygarth (SBnnn)
- The Glory Days of Cricket by Ashley Mote (GDC)
- John Nyren's "The Cricketers of my Time" by Ashley Mote