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Evans, Thomas Godfrey
Date of Birth:
Place of Birth:
Finchley, London
Test: 1946 - 1959
First Class: 1939 - 1959
England (Country)
Kent Spitfires (Regional)

1957 2nd Test: Cowdrey and Evans deliver win (Newlands)

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Theatrical wicketkeeper, slowest off the mark 

Evans, Thomas Godfrey

Godfrey Evans was born on August 18, 1920 in Finchley, Middlesex. He died aged 78 on May 3, 1999 in Northampton.

He was the outstanding keeper of his time. Evans was of stocky build, gregarious and outgoing in personality.

He introduced spectacular diving and other theatrics to the art of keeping. In his autobiography, The Gloves Are Off (1960), Evans wrote candidly that when young, he wanted to "impress people and catch the eye".

He began his career at the age of 16 on the Kent groundstaff, and first played for his county in 1939. After the second world war, he was picked in England's team against India at the Oval in 1946 and then made his first Ashes tour in 1946/47.

His keeping upto the wicket when taking the swing of Alec Bedser was testimony to his quality glovework. When he retired in 1959, Evans held the Test record for the most dismissals by a keeper. He was surpassed by Alan Knott.

Evans was a steady batsman who entered the Test arena during a crisis in the Adelaide Test in 1947. He took 95 minutes to get off the mark as he supported Denis Compton in a rescue act. This was the slowest start to a Test innings. This record stood until 1999 when Kiwi tail-ender, Geoff Allott batted for 101 minutes and faced 77 balls before being out for a duck against South Africa in Auckland.

He made 7 Test centuries and scored 2439 runs.

In his first-class career, he held 811 catches and stumped 250. In 91 Tests, he held 173 catches and had 46 stumpings.

In his retirement, Evans worked for Ladbrokes, advising on cricketing odds. He was awarded a CBE and was an entertaining after dinner speaker.

Source: CricketCrowd Staff Reporter 

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