Trevor Chappell

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For the radio presenter, see Trevor Chappell (radio presenter).
Trevor Chappell
Personal information
Full name Trevor Martin Chappell
Born (1952-10-12) 12 October 1952 (age 62)
Glenelg, South Australia, Australia
Batting style Right-handed
Bowling style Right arm medium
Relations Ian Chappell (brother)
Greg Chappell (brother)
Vic Richardson (grandfather)
International information
National side
Test debut (cap 311) 18 June 1981 v England
Last Test 21 July 1981 v England
ODI debut (cap 61) 23 November 1980 v New Zealand
Last ODI 20 June 1983 v India
Domestic team information
Years Team
1977–1986 New South Wales
1976–1977 Western Australia
1972–1976 South Australia
Career statistics
Competition Test ODI FC LA
Matches 3 20 88 51
Runs scored 79 229 4,049 828
Batting average 15.80 17.61 29.55 24.35
100s/50s 0/0 1/0 5/21 1/3
Top score 27 110 150 110
Balls bowled 0 736 3,355 2,105
Wickets 19 59 52
Bowling average 28.31 24.77 27.88
5 wickets in innings 0 0 0
10 wickets in match n/a 0 n/a
Best bowling 3/31 4/12 4/35
Catches/stumpings 2/– 8/– 47/– 18/–
Source: Cricinfo, 18 November 2008

Trevor Martin Chappell (born 12 October 1952, Glenelg, South Australia) is a former Australian cricketer, a member of the South Australian Chappell family which excelled at cricket.[1] He played 3 tests and 20 One Day Internationals for Australia, in which his batting was lacklustre but his bowling was strong enough to make him a bowling all-rounder for Australia.

His career was overshadowed, however, by an incident in 1981 in which he bowled an underarm delivery to New Zealand cricketer Brian McKechnie to stop the batsman from hitting a six.

After retiring from first class cricket in 1986, Chappell went on to coach the Bangladesh cricket team and became a fielding coach for the Sri Lankan cricket team. He is currently the national coach of the Singapore Cricket Team.

Early life[edit]

Chappell was the youngest of the Chappell cricketing brothers. He attended Prince Alfred College and was a schoolboy cricketer, meeting the high standards set for him by his brothers Ian Chappell and Greg Chappell, and their grandfather, former Australian test captain of the 1930s Victor Richardson.[1] His childhood hero was Keith Miller.[2] Chappell grew up playing cricket in the backyard with his brothers and like them was coached by Lynn Foster.[3]

Over the summer of 1969/70 he toured the West Indies with the Australian Schoolboys XI, a team that also included Gary Gilmour, Gary Cosier and Ian Davis.[4] At this stage Chappell was a batsman, although his excellent fielding at cover also brought him attention. "I figured the cover region was the area where the ball went more often than not, so I thought it was a good spot to field," he later said. "It keeps you occupied and always in the game."[3]

First Class Career[edit]

Chappell debuted for South Australia in the 1972–73 season. He later recalled:

When I first got picked for South Australia, Ian said, "You got to decide what sort of a player you want to be – whether you want to be an aggressive, attacking player, or more like a grafting sort of player." I had to think about that and that I'm not really a free hitter of the ball, so the choice I made was I was going to be more of a grafter.[3]

His career began well, scoring 67 on debut.[5] He made half centuries in his next two games, but struggled thereafter and was eventually dropped from the South Australian side. Chappell:

When I first played for South Australia, I did all right. Then I got injured right at the start of the second season – I broke my nose and cheekbone in a fielding accident. I damaged my shoulder as well. I couldn't throw very well. Fielding has always been one of my main skills and I lost confidence in the fielding. I wasn't getting any runs, I wasn't bowling much in those days, and I wasn't fielding terribly well either. I ended up playing all of the first-class season and had a bad season. I still couldn't get runs in South Australia the following season but I'd go to England and get runs. I got dropped from the South Australian team. [3]

Over the 1975–76 summer Chappell toured South Africa as part of DH Robins XI ("I... did all right," says Chappell.[3]) When he returned he continued to play club cricket in Adelaide.

West Australia[edit]

Chappell then received an offer to play for the Scarborough Cricket Club in Perth and moved to Western Australia. He played four first class games for West Australia in 1976–77, scoring two fifties at an average of 40. In 1976 and 1977 he played for East Lancashire in the Lancashire League.[6]

World Series Cricket[edit]

In 1977 Chappell signed to play for World Series Cricket along with his brothers. He had failed to make the first team for WA for the 1977–78 season when Dennis Lillee approached him. Chappell later recalled, "Lillee said to me, "Bad luck about not making it in the WA team. Don't worry, something better might come along." I had no idea what he meant. And a few days later [Austin] Robinson, Dennis' manager, rang and said, "Do you want to join World Series Cricket" and I said, "Yeah, where do I sign?""[3]

In 1977–78 Chappell played ten games for WSC Australia in the Country Cup, scoring 339 runs, more than any other Australian batsman, although his average was only 26.[7] A highlight was a 110 he scored against the West Indies.[8]

1978–79 Summer[edit]

Over the 1978–79 season Chappell mostly played for the WSC Cavaliers, a team of players of various nationalities, who were not selected for the top three WSC teams, competing in the Cavaliers Cup.

"We had a whole mixture and nobody probably really wanted to be there," recalled Chappell. "They would rather be in the main games. We had some surprising results. We won a few games we probably weren't expected to."[3]

Chappell enjoyed good form that summer, which he partly attributed to the captaincy of Eddie Barlow. "Eddie once said to me early on in the series, "You gotta stop trying to play like Ian or Greg and play like you. Just be Trevor." That definitely helped me through World Series."[3]

Chappell's highlights that summer included 93 against the West Indies[9] and 126,[10] 96[11] and 72[12] against the World XI. Chappell led the aggregates out of all players in the Country Tour, making 629 runs at an average of 33.1, including one century and four half centuries.[13]

Australian XI Selection and the West Indies[edit]

This form helped earn Chappell selection in the Australian XI one day team for the International Cup that summer (he played in three games with a top score of 14) and also on the Australian XI in the West Indies in 1979.[14] Chappell was picked in the first four of the Supertests but was unable to reprise his Australian form in the Caribbean, his highest score in the test matches and one day internationals being 28.

Move to New South Wales[edit]

When World Series Cricket ended in 1979 Chappell moved to Sydney started playing for New South Wales.[1] He started brilliantly for his new state, scoring 150 against West Australia.;[15] he later scored 144 against Tasmania.[16] Chappell's bowling began to be increasingly used as a change option and his fielding came be regarded amongst the best in the country; he began to be discussed as an international prospect.

International career[edit]

In 1980/81 Chappell was selected in the Australian one day side.[17]

He was also picked in the team to tour England in 1981. Early success on the tour saw Chappell selected in the first three tests however his lack of solid performance led to his eventual dropping. He scored a total of 79 runs without once passing 30, and did not bowl.[1] He never played another test. "Being on a tour that is not very successful probably damns your chances to get another go," he later reflected.[3]

In his One-Day International debut against New Zealand, Chappell managed only 12 runs and went wicketless.[17] For the remainder of his ODI career, his batting would remain the same, he passing 20 only twice and passing 30 only once.[17] That particular innings against India, however, ended on 110 – becoming his first and only century in international cricket.[17] However, his bowling eventually improved and he ended his One-Day International career with a bowling average of 28.31.[17] He took three wickets in a match twice, both in the World Cup.[17] Chappell later recalled:

I preferred to open the batting or bat in the top order somewhere. But I probably wasn't good enough to bat at No. 3 or No. 4, which is why I was where I was – down at the bottom. It just depended if we had couple of good openers so I wasn't going to get a go there and at No. 3 or No. 4 or even at 5, 6, so 7 is where I got a go in the international side.[3]

Underarm incident[edit]

Chappell became infamous after bowling an underarm delivery when playing for Australia during a match against New Zealand in 1981, an incident still often described[by whom?] as the lowest point in the history of cricket.[who?] The teams were contesting the third final of the Benson and Hedges World Series Cup. New Zealand needed to score six runs to tie the match. Not wanting to risk this, Greg Chappell, Australia's captain and Chappell's brother, asked Trevor Chappell how his underarm bowling was. When Trevor Chappell replied that he didn't know because he had never bowled underarm, Greg Chappell said, "well there is only one way to find out"[18] and then Trevor Chappell rolled the ball along the ground to batsman Brian McKechnie.

Underarm bowling, allowed at the time by the rules of the series, but already outlawed at the time in England's domestic competition, is no longer permitted in games under the playing regulations directly controlled by the ICC. In terms of The Laws of Cricket (Law 24.1b), underarm bowling is permitted in other matches provided that the captains agree to it prior to the start of the match.

Although it was not universally illegal to bowl underarm at the time, it was widely accepted to be contrary to the spirit of the game. A visibly agitated McKechnie could do little but block the ball to avoid being dismissed and so Australia won the game. It was described as "the most disgusting incident I can recall in the history of cricket" by then Prime Minister of New Zealand, Rob Muldoon.[19]

Later career[edit]

In 1982–83 Chappell was an integral part of the NSW side which won the Sheffield Shield. His efforts earned him selection in the Australian side for the 1983 World Cup.

Later life[edit]

Chappell retired from first-class cricket in 1986, however he continued to play grade cricket with the North Sydney cricket club and went on to coach the Gordon Women's cricket club. He was also engaged with the Sri Lankan cricket team and Bangladesh cricket team in coaching. He was a fielding coach for Sri Lanka and had a short stint as national coach for Bangladesh.

In 2003, Chappell, along with his brothers, were honoured by the South Australian Cricket Association when a new stand in the Adelaide Oval was named the Chappell Stand after the cricketing brothers.[20]

Chappell now coaches the 1st XI cricket team at The King's School, Parramatta and the Singapore National Cricket Team. From July to September 2009, he undertook a 50-day stint as coach of Singapore for its ICC World Cricket League Division 6 tournament, held in Singapore.


  1. ^ a b c d "Trevor Chappel Cricinfo Profile". Cricinfo. Retrieved 2006-12-29. 
  2. ^ "Lost at Lord's, pasted by Viv: Trevor Chappell on being hit through the sightscreen and other delights", Interview by Vishal Dikshit Cricinfo 9 November 2013 accessed 10 November 2013
  3. ^ a b c d e f g h i j "'People probably wouldn't remember me if not for the underarm incident'The youngest of the Chappell brothers talks about growing up in a cricketing household, how baseball and football helped his fielding, and coaching youngsters" Interview by Vishal Dikshit Cricinfo June 6, 2014 accessed 7 June 2014
  4. ^ Australian Schoolboys in West Indies 1969–70 at Cricket Archive
  5. ^ "Queensland v South Australia, Sheffield Shield 1972/73, Brisbane Cricket Ground, Woolloongabba, Brisbane on 17th, 18th, 19th November 1972 (4-day match)" at Cricket Archive
  6. ^ Trevor Chappell Lancashire League matches at Cricket Archive
  7. ^ WSC Australia Batting Avergages Cricket Country Cup 1977–78 at Cricket Australia
  8. ^ "WSC Australia v WSC West Indies World Series Cricket Country Cup 1977/78 Venue Lavington Sports Oval, Albury on 12th, 13th December 1977" at Cricket Archive
  9. ^ "WSC Cavaliers v WSC West Indies World Series Cricket Cavaliers Country Tour 1978/79 Venue Sir Richard Moore Sports Centre, Kalgoorlie on 23 November 1978" at Cricket Archive
  10. ^ "WSC Cavaliers v WSC World XI World Series Cricket Cavaliers Country Tour 1978/79 Venue Queen Elizabeth II Oval, Bendigo on 10th, 11th January 1979" accessed 10 November 2013
  11. ^ "WSC Cavaliers v WSC World XI World Series Cricket Cavaliers Country Tour 1978/79 Venue Wade Park, Orange on 20th, 21st January 1979 (2-day match)" at Cricket Archive
  12. ^ "WSC Cavaliers v WSC World XI World Series Cricket Cavaliers Country Tour 1978/79 Venue Robertson Oval, Wagga Wagga on 24th January 1979 (50-over match)" at Cricket Archive
  13. ^ "Complete Country Tour Statistics", Cricket Alight! World Series Cricket, Golden Press 1979 p 51
  14. ^ WSC in West Indies 1978–79 at Cricket Archive
  15. ^ "New South Wales v Western Australia Sheffield Shield 1979/80 Venue Sydney Cricket Ground, Sydney on 27th, 28th, 29th, 30th October 1979" at Cricket Archive
  16. ^ "Queensland v New South Wales Sheffield Shield 1979/80 Venue Brisbane Cricket Ground, Woolloongabba, Brisbane on 19th, 20th, 21st, 22nd January 1980 (4-day match)" at Cricket Archive.
  17. ^ a b c d e f "Stats Guru – Trevor Chappel Innings by Innings list ODIs". Cricinfo. Retrieved 2006-12-29. 
  18. ^ 'Interview with Trevor Chappell:It wasn’t easy bowling that over', 2013-08-26
  19. ^ The Underarm incident
  20. ^ "Chappell brothers and Clem Hill honoured at Adelaide Oval". Cricinfo. Retrieved 2006-12-29. 

External links[edit]