Full name Gerald Hill
Born April 15, 1913, Totton, Hampshire
Died January 31, 2006, Lyndhurst, Hampshire (aged 92 years 291 days)
Major teams Hampshire
Batting style Right-hand bat
Bowling style Right-arm offbreak
|First-class span||1932 - 1954|
Gerry Hill had two claims to fame. The first is that he was discovered by and recommended to Hampshire by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle. The other is that he was shot in the leg by a team-mate, Len Creese, while bowling in the nets. The bullet stayed in Hill's leg for the rest of his life, more than 60 years. Conan Doyle, a prominent club player in Southsea where he was a doctor, was playing golf with Hill's father, by coincidence, on the 18th fairway at Bramshaw in the New Forest when the skill of a young cricketer on an adjoining pitch caught his eye. `'There's a boy out there who looks as if he can play a bit,'' the great man is alleged to have said. On finding out that the teenager in question was Hill's son, he wrote to Colonel JG Greig, Hampshire's secretary, to arrange a trial at the start of a career spanning World War II from 1932 to 1954. Despite an ordinary set of figures as batsman and an offspinner, Hill had his moments. With David `Hooky' Walker Hill put on 235 for the fifth wicket against Sussex at Portsmouth in 1937, which remains a county record. Two years earlier at Cardiff he was hit for 32 in an over by Glamorgan's Cyril Smart (664664), then the most expensive in first-class cricket. Hill was born in Totton, Southampton and lived most of his life in Lyndhurst. It was at Totton Drill Hall one February that he was shot in the leg by Creese. `'Creese was as mad as a hatter. He had this gun and whether it went off accidentally, I don't know,'' said Hill. `'I was running into bowl and it knocked me off my feet.'' The incident was hushed up but a doctor decided the bullet was too close to the bone to take it out. Hill went to a masseur and was fit enough to play in the first match of the season. `'I went through the whole war and never got shot at.'' Pat Symes, The Wisden Cricketer
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