November 19, 1855, Lascelles Hall, Huddersfield, Yorkshire
January 08, 1900, Lepton, Huddersfield, Yorkshire, (aged 44y 50d)
Right hand Bat
Right arm Offbreak
The tragic Willie Bates, whose luminous career was cut short by a freak injury in Australia in 1887-88. Bates was bowling his offspinners in the nets when a straight-drive hit him in the face, damaging his eyesight so badly that he never played first-class cricket again. After that, he became depressed and attempted suicide. Bates took 50 wickets in 15 Tests (all of which he played in Australia) at a startling average of 16.42. His finest hour came at Melbourne in 1882-83, when he took 7 for 28 (including the first Test hat-trick by an Englishman) and 7 for 74 as England hammered Australia by an innings. As a batsman he made ten first-class hundreds, and was good enough to open for England. He died in Yorkshire in 1900, aged only 45.
Wisden Cricinfo staff
Batting & Fielding