Murray Ernest Chapple
July 25, 1930, Christchurch, Canterbury
July 31, 1985, Hamilton, Waikato, (aged 55y 6d)
Right hand Bat
Left arm Medium
Murray Ernest Chapple, who died at Hamilton on July 31, 1985, and 55, had already been appointed to manage the New Zealand team to England in 1986. A burly cricketer and able administrator, he possessed a sharp sense of humour and warm personality, and his death was an untimely blow to New Zealand cricket. Making his début for Canterbury when he was nineteen, as a right-hand batsman and left-arm swing bowler, he went on to play fourteen times for New Zealand between 1952-53 and 1956-66, first as an opening batsman and then lower in the order, scoring 497 test runs at an average of 19.11 with a top score of 76 against South Africa at Cape Town in 1953-54. After a season ( 1950-51) with Central Districts he forced his way into New Zealand's Test side by making an aggressive 165 for Canterbury against the touring South Africans at Christchurch in 1952-53, followed by 88 in the second innings. Of his fourteen Tests, eleven were in fact against South Africa, a country which he toured twice, the second time, in 1961-62, as vice-captain to John Reid. He was a member of the first New Zealand side to win a Test match, against West Indies at Auckland in 1955-56, and in his last Test match, against England at Christchurch in 1965-66, he was New Zealand's captain. Injury then precipitated his retirement, whereupon he became a New Zealand selector until 1970. He also managed the New Zealanders in West Indies in 1971-72 and in India and Pakistan in 1976-77. In first-class cricket he scored 5,344 runs (28.88) and hit four centuries. Switching from seam to orthodox left-arm spin, he also took 142 wickets, one of them in a Test match.
Wisden Cricketers' Almanack
Batting & Fielding