Josh Philippe was one of three uncapped players in Australia’s 21-man squad for their recent limited-overs tour of England. Here’s our lowdown on the 23-year-old.
Josh Philippe: The background
A right-handed wicketkeeper batsman, Josh Philippe plies his trade with Western Australia in first-class and 50-over cricket in Australia, but turns out for Sydney Sixers in the Big Bash League.
The hard-hitting batter made his first-class debut in February 2018 for WA against Tasmania, but he’d already impressed against some big names just months earlier. Opening the batting against the touring England side in November 2017, Philippe hit 88 from 92 balls – 64 runs came off boundaries. The attack included James Anderson, Stuart Broad and Chris Woakes.
Nineteen first-class appearances so far have returned one century and seven half-centuries, but it’s Philippe’s white-ball prowess that has landed him a maiden international call-up, with his excellence in the Big Bash the key selling point.
The Big Bash breakout
Despite making his BBL debut for Perth Scorchers in 2017, Philippe moved to the Sixers for the 2018/19 season, with his hero Steve Smith speaking to him personally to help orchestrate the move.
After impressing as a finisher lower down the order, Philippe eventually moved up to open, and his free-wheeling game thrived even more, with an unbeaten 86 from 49 balls in a nine-wicket win over Hobart Hurricanes his highest score of the season. He ended that season with a half-century in the Sixers’ losing semi-final effort against Melbourne Renegades, but plenty of more success arrived in the 2019/20 campaign.
Philippe came good earlier this year to deliver the Sixers the BBL title, hitting 52 from 29 balls in the final against Melbourne Stars, earning him the Player of the Final award. It capped a 487-run season, with only Alex Hales and Marcus Stoinis hitting more runs in the tournament.
Philippe could make his Australia debut on the upcoming tour, and he’s also got an IPL gig in the bag to showcase his rise. He was picked up by Royal Challengers Bangalore at last December’s auction for a base price of INR 20 lakhs.
The final word on Josh Philippe
“There’s no reason why he can’t play all three forms for Australia” – Steve Smith