Arthur Bates earned his place in the Nottinghamshire First XI with some useful performances for Nottingham Commercial in the early part of the 1878 season. Unfortunately, he was not able to capitalise on the opportunity that presented, making 0 and 5 in his debut match against Derbyshire and a ‘pair’ versus Yorkshire; in neither game did he bowl and no catches came his way.
He was, according to contemporary accounts a fair bat and slow right-arm bowler whose preferred fielding position was at mid-on. In club cricket he represented Trinity United and Nottingham Castle, as well as Commercial. In his final recorded game, for Nottingham Castle v Birmingham in June 1881, he took one wicket for 25 runs but did not get to bat before the match was drawn. Later that summer, he appeared against Alfred Shaw’s XI and fared little better – scoring one and 0, in the second innings being victim of his namesake Wille Bates, who had also been in the opposing Yorkshire side in 1878.
Arthur John Bates, born in New Radford on 18 June 1852, was a talented footballer, who in 1879 played on the right wing for Nottingham Forest. A tailor by trade, he died in Old Lenton on 13 February 1925, aged 72 years.
Nottinghamshire First-Class Number: 158