It was a winter to remember for Matt Critchley and the Derbyshire all-rounder has already showed he is ready to play a full part in what could be a special summer for the county.
Critchley’s batting pyrotechnics in the North-South series in Barbados made a big impression on ECB Director of Cricket Andrew Strauss who described his 64 off 37 balls as “brilliant.”
The 21-year-old Lancastrian worked on his leg-spin in Australia on the ECB’s International Pathway with former Test player Stuart MacGill and the signs in the opening two County Championship matches have been encouraging.
“I’ve spent two years working with Stuey now and we get on pretty well,” said Critchley.
“I send him videos of my bowling to see what he’s got to say and it’s lovely to have someone of that pedigree checking everything that you’re doing.
“It’s been brilliant working with him and he’s probably the one that’s got my bowling back on track.”
Critchley played an important role in last week’s victory over Middlesex at Derby and, despite bitterly cold conditions at Leicester on Sunday and Monday, again bowled well. “In four-day cricket, I’m more of a batter who can complement the seamers and bowl 10 or 15 overs a day but I see myself as a an all-rounder and for the Lions in Antigua I played as a bowler and batted at seven or eight,” added Critchley.