Darren Stevens was run out in his last innings in both Vitality Blast and Royal London One-Day Cup cricket but two years after those setbacks, he is desperate to get another chance in white-ball cricket.
The evergreen all-rounder may be pushing 45 – in fact he will have reached the landmark well before this year’s competitions get under way – but he says he still has much to give in both formats.
The Kent cricketer hasn’t played in the 20-over format since being run out for a duck while on loan at Derbyshire in August 2019 and fared little better when caught short of his ground when scoring four for Kent in a 50-over game four months earlier.
And although, in an interview in the latest issue of County Cricket Matters magazine, he tells editor and Guerilla Cricket commentator Annie Chave that his county have informed him that youth is their priority, he says there is something he can offer that the youngsters can’t.
“I love white-ball cricket and the challenges that it brings,” he says. “But they’ve pigeon-holed me now and tell me I’m too old to play.
“It kills me because T20 is my game and it always has been. If I look back over the last three years, we’ve got to quarter-finals and last stages, and if I look at where we’ve crumbled it’s been in the middle, and that’s been my role for 15 years.”
In a wide-ranging interview, the man who has had spells with Dhaka Gladiators and Comilla Victorians in the T20 Bangladesh Premier League also reveals what Jason Gillespie thought of him when temporary coach at Kent and the debt he owes to Neil Burns, who helped him at his first county, Leicestershire.
The interview with Stevens, who has scored almost 16,000 first-class runs and is only four wickets short of 550, is just one of many interesting and informative articles in the sixth edition of CCM.
Fellow Guerilla Gary Naylor talks about his love for – and the connections and contrasts between – covering cricket and theatre, while Derek Payne hilariously envisions the future of the Hundred. There is an interview with the recently-retired Ollie Rayner, a moving tribute to the West Indies fast bowler Ezra Moseley, who died in a car accident in his native Barbados last month, and in a publication strong on women’s cricket, a look ahead to the women’s domestic season from author Richard Clark and Abbie Slade’s experience of a year in the life of a female supporter of “the gentleman’s game”. And, as they say, a helluva lot more!