Yorskshire born - his father had played for Yorkshire, Willis Cuttell plied his trade in the Lancashire Leagues as an all-rounder. He played a couple of times for Yorkshire but became a regular in the Lancashire side in 1896, after he had qualified through residence. He prospered under the captaincy of A.C.MacLaren, and in 1898 became the first Lancashire player to achieve the double. He bowled slowish spin, able to turn the ball both ways, and maintained an excellent length. He was a strong field, and a solid defensive bat, capable of hitting hard when required. He played just two Tests, when he toured South Africa in 1898/99 under Lord Hawke and performed well with the ball. On retirement he spent 20 years as coach at Rugby, and subsequently was a first-class umpire for two seasons.
(Article: Copyright © 2003 Dave Liverman)