Kent Cricket is sad to report that former wicketkeeper-batsman Anthony Catt has died at the age of 84.
Born in Edenbridge in October 1933, he made his first-class debut against Oxford University in 1954 – the first of 138 matches in his career.
Catt had played for the Army cricket team in 1952 and began appearing for Kent’s Second XI in 1954. He won his Second XI cap in 1955, and played occasionally in the First XI until 1958, deputising along with Derek Ufton when Godfrey Evans was playing for England.
On Evans’ retirement in 1959 Catt and Ufton shared the wicket-keeping duties until Ufton’s retirement in 1962 allowed Catt to play more games, appearing 21 times in 1962, 30 in 1963 and 20 in 1964.
Catt emigrated to South Africa after the 1964 season to play for Western Province and was replaced as Kent’s main wicket-keeper by Alan Knott who had begun to establish himself.
In August 1955, when Northamptonshire made 374 in their first innings against Kent the total included 73 extras and Catt conceded 48 byes. In mitigation he was suffering from the effects of sunburn keeping to the leg spin of Doug Wright.
Catt’s highest score in first-class cricket came when he was used as a nightwatchman against Leicestershire in 1962. Having survived until stumps, the following day he scored 121 in the morning session, finishing with a score of 162, his only first-class century.
In total Catt played 118 matches in the County Championship, nine in the Currie Cup and played twice for Kent in the Gillette Cup as one-day cricket became established in the early 1960s.
He will be sadly missed by his family, wife Jenny, children Chris, Leslie, Susan and his loving grandchildren.
Everyone at the club offers their condolences to Anthony’s family, friends and former teammates.