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Biography
HT Chapman
  • Born Unknown
  • Died Unknown
  • Educated
  • Occupation Civil servant
  • Debut 11 May 1865 v United South Of England XI at Rathmines
  • Cap Number 74
  • Style Middle order batsman - Hand Unknown; Wicket-Keeper
  • Teams Leinster, Civil Service

Unfortunately HT CHapman is another early Irish cricketer whose biographical have proved impossible to trace, although full details are known for his brother Dr JH CHapman who also played for Ireland and was a generally better known cricketer. HTC, as a wicketkeeper/batsman played for a Civil Service XX against Vice Regal XII on the Civil Service ground in Phoenix Park on 25 April 1863 It was the first match ever to be played on the Civil Service ground, it having been donated to them by the Lord Lieutenant the Earl of Carlisle, a cricket enthusiast and an early supporter of votes for women.

HTC kept wicket tidily, allowing only 3 byes and making a stumping as Viceregal were dismissed for 122. The hosts finished just short on 112-11.

HTC's only match for Ireland came against the visiting United South of England at Rathmines in May 1865. He played as a batsman with R Hudson keeping wicket. This was the first match which the USE played having broken away from the United England XI following a dispute over finances. The match was ruined by rain but began with the visitors being bowled out by W Ashton the Phoenix all rounder and Paul Smith an English professional for 58. However the hosts collapsed for 86 against the two great bowlers Edgar Willsher and James Lillywhite, jnr, the two prime movers in setting up the USE. HTC made only 7 being bowled by Lillywhite. USE finished the match in a commanding position but rain ensured a draw.

HTC's last major match was also at Rathmines being for Leinster CC against Yorkshire United, a very strong side full of well known names. The wicket was less than perfect and the visitors were bowled out by professional Paul Smith and the paceman Arthur Carter for 65, only Ephraim "Mary Ann" Lockwood with 33 making a score. Batting again, the Yorkies did slightly better reaching with George Ulyett showing the form that was to make him a Test cricketer. Batting again the hosts were dismissed for 88, with HTC, one of two double figure scores making 13. Leinster had engaged the great William "Terrible Billy" Caffyn but, now nearing his 50th birthday, he failed making 6 and as well as failing to take a wicket.

HTC is not to be found in major Irish cricket again. A player of this name, also an upper order batsman, was prlominent in club cricket in Hampshire a few years later, but I have been unable to trace any further details about him.

Edward Liddle, April 2019

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