A profile of Wilfred Rhodes
by Dave Liverman
Greatest all-rounder of all time? Slow left arm bowler of great accuracy, spun the ball sharply on bad wickets, but on hard wickets relied mainly on accurate length and subtle variations in flight. As a batsman started as a number 11, but became an opener for England as partner for Hobbs. Strong defense, dour style, never known to cut. Safe pair of hands in slips or anywhere else. Imperturbable temperament. Right handed bat. Wilfred Rhodes had a long and varied career, playing for England until he was over 50. He was first picked for his slow left arm bowling. He bowled from the shortest of runs, and kept immaculate length and line, commanding variation in flight. Early in his career he was not noted for his batting, going in number 11 for England (notably in the final Test against Australia in 1905 where he and Hirst won the game by scoring 14 runs for the last wicket). His batting improved so much that he later opened the innings for England.
(Article: Copyright © 1998 Dave Liverman)