Full name Henry Phillips
Born October 14, 1844, Hastings, Sussex
Died July 3, 1919, Clive Vale, Hastings, Sussex (aged 74 years 262 days)
Major teams Sussex
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Slow left-arm orthodox (roundarm)
Fielding position Wicketkeeper
|First-class span||1868 - 1891|
Harry Phillips was the first wicketkeeper to do away with his long stop and take full responsibility for keeping (it happened against Gloucestershire in June 1873). This was an era when wicketkeepers always stood up, but gradually they began to stand back to faster bowlers and the long stop was consigned to history.
Harry Phillips, the veteran Sussex wicket-keeper, died at Hastings on July 4 in his 75th year. He was born at Hastings on October 14, 1844, and lived all his days in the town. It was Phillips' misfortune to be a little overshadowed by wicket-keepers more gifted than himself. He was first-rate--wonderfully nimble and clever--but not quite equal to Pooley and Pinder at the start of his career or in later years to Pilling and Sherwin. For this reason he was largely restricted to county cricket. The M.C.C. picked him for the Players at Lord's in 1873--a choice he abundantly justified--but his only other appearances against the Gentlemen were in John Lillywhite's benefit match on the old Brighton ground in 1871 and at Hastings in 1891--the year curiously enough in which he took leave of public cricket. Coming out for Sussex in 1868 he kept wicket for the county right on till 1888. In the following year he played in a few matches and in 1891 he played once. As a wicket-keeper he was physically well-equipped. He was ambidextrous and, for a man of his short stature, he had very long arms. His success was at times astonishing. For Sussex against Surrey at the Oval in 1872 he caught five batsmen and stumped five, and against Kent at Brighton in 1884 he caught three and stumped five. These were the most conspicuous of many remarkable feats. Phillips had small pretensions as a batsman--his average for Sussex during his whole career works out at a trifle over eleven--but he enjoyed one day of greatness. For Sussex against the Australians at Brighton in July, 1884, he played an innings of 111, he and Mr. G. N. Wyatt putting on 182 runs for the eighth wicket. The fact of his making such a score against Spofforth, Palmer, Giffen, Boyle, W. H. Cooper, and Midwinter bewildered the good people of Brighton, but it is safe to say that no one was quite so astonished as Phillips himself. He played very well, but Spofforth and Palmer were stale and dispirited, England having beaten Australia in a single innings on the previous day at Lord's. Phillips was always the cheeriest of cricketers. No day was long enough to damp his good spirits.
Wisden Cricketers' Almanack